Close your eyes and picture your first phone.
Chances are you’re picturing the introduced many a phone fan to the mobile world. With its swappable and customisable plastic case, hidden antenna, T9 text input and the legendary game Snake, the 3310 is rightly remembered as one of the greatest phones ever., a midnight blue and grey marvel that launched in September 2000 and
And now it’s back.
Nokia has had a few lean years after completing the sale of its phone business to Microsoft in 2014, but a handful of former employees have banded together to resurrect the Nokia name with a range of new Android phones. And to show they haven’t forgotten what made the Finnish brand so popular, they’re rebooting the 3310 as a colourful modern feature phone.
HMD Global’s newly revitalised Nokia phone business went back to the future on Sunday, re-introducing a brightly coloured version of the classic 3310 talk and text phone, the world’s most popular device in the year 2000.
The new model resembles a slimmer, larger-screened version of the original and is priced at just 49 euros ($67). Its 22 hours of talk time and up to one month of standby time potentially heighten the phone’s appeal as a backup for smartphone users. Unfortunately, it might not be much use to Australians.
While the new 3310 is a significant upgrade in many areas — with a colour screen, a camera, a microSD card slot, the ability to play MP3s and even a new version of the classic game Snake — it sticks with old 2G GSM network standards for calling and texting, according to the Nokia website.
In Australia these networks are currently being phased out, with Telstra having already turned its 2G service off and other telcos to soon follow suit. HMD, which has exclusive rights to make phones with the Nokia brand, told Fairfax Media the new 3310 was a “2.5G device”, which is a term generally used to mean it uses GSM for call and text but can also access rudimentary internet over GPRS or EDGE.
Industry analysts say the revived Nokia 3310 has the makings of one of the hit devices of 2017, appealing to older Nokia fans in developed markets looking for an antidote to smartphone overload, while also appealing to younger crowds in emerging markets.
And the big question: Does it have Snake?
Yes. But in an example of trying too hard to modernise things, it’s a weird colour version with updated graphics that involves travelling diagonally. The old version was better.