TCL's first NXTPAPER phones to help reduce eye strain with paper-like displays

TCL 40 NXTPAPER 5G hero render alt
(Image credit: TCL)

What you need to know

  • The TCL 40 NXTPAPER and 40 NXTPAPER 5G have been officially unveiled during a virtual event. 
  • These are the first phones to feature TCL's NXTPAPER technology, aiming to offer a "paper-like visual experience."
  • Both of these phones will be available in Europe first, before coming to more regions "later this year."

In a world dominated by OLED and LCD phone panels, TCL has been looking to buck the trend of harmful screens. The company first unveiled its NXTPAPER display back in 2021, and now TCL is announcing its first smartphones that take advantage of this technology.

As a quick refresher, NXTPAPER is an IPS display that does not include a built-in backlight. This worked well for the various tablets that TCL has released, but the company is taking a different approach. Instead, you'll be able to toggle between "color" and "monochrome" modes, which will give you an experience similar to what's found on the best E Ink tablets. This is said to reduce eye strain while also being "certified by TÜV for low harmful blue light."

TCL 40 NXTPAPER and 40 NXTPAPER 5G hero render

(Image credit: TCL)

Until now, TCL's NXTPAPER displays have only been found on various tablets and a few laptops. But now, TCL is branching out into the smartphone world with the TCL 40 NXTPAPER and 40 NXTPAPER 5G.

The former features a 6.78-inch screen with an FHD+ resolution and is even compatible with TCL's T-pen if you want to jot down notes. Powering the phone is MediaTek's Helio G88 which is paired with 8GB of RAM along with 256GB of expandable storage via the microSD card slot. 

As for cameras, the 40 NXTPAPER features a 32MP fixed-focus selfie lens, nestled in the hole-punch cutout on the front. On the back, you'll find a trio of camera sensors, headlined by the 50MP wide-angle main camera. This is accompanied by a 5MP ultrawide lens and a 2MP macro sensor. 

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Header Cell - Column 0 TCL 40 NXTPAPERTCL 40 NXTPAPER 5G
Display6.78-inch NXTPAPER, FHD+6.6-inch v-notch NXTPAPER, HD+
ProcessorMediaTek Helio G88MediaTek Dimensity 6020
Storage256GB w/ microSD card slot256GB w/ microSD card slot
Front Camera32MP8MP
Rear Cameras50MP (wide), 5MP (ultrawide), 2MP (macro)50MP (wide), 2MP (depth), 2MP (macro)
Battery5,010mAh w/ 33W fast-charging5,000mAh w/ 15W fast-charging
ExtrasSide-mounted fingerprint scanner, NFC, 3.5mm headphone jackSide-mounted fingerprint scanner, NFC, 3.5mm headphone jack

Moving onto the 40 NXTPAPER 5G, this makes use of a 6.6-inch v-notch NXTPAPER screen, with an HD+ resolution. The MediaTek Dimensity 6020is at the helm, paired with 6GB of RAM and 256GB of storage, while also being equipped with a microSD card slot.

TCL 40 NXTPAPER 5G hero render

(Image credit: TCL)

Hidden in the v-notch on the front is a rather pedestrian 8MP fixed-focus selfie camera, capable of recording 1080p video at 30fps. Moving to the back, we again have a triple-lens setup headlined by a 50MP wide-angle camera. However, the 2MP depth sensor and 2MP macro camera will probably leave a bit to be desired.

According to TCL, both of these models will first go on sale in Europe with the 40 NXTPAPER priced at €199 and the 40 NXTPAPER 5G coming in at €249. The former will be available in September with the latter slated to arrive sometime in October before models come to "more countries globally this year."

Andrew Myrick
Senior Editor - Chromebooks and tablets

Andrew Myrick is a Senior Editor at Android Central. He enjoys everything to do with technology, including tablets, smartphones, and everything in between. Perhaps his favorite past-time is collecting different headphones, even if they all end up in the same drawer.

  • Stanley Kubrick
    I'm intrigued. I would like to see one in person. Without a backlight I wonder how well they perform in sunlight?