Ever since Nokia introduced the new iteration of its classic 3310 there’s been an intense debate going on in my head.
“It’s really cheap!” shouts Nostalgia.
“Why the hell would you want a phone that doesn’t have apps?” replies Logic.
Maybe that same debate has been going on in your head too. Don’t worry, I went hands-on with the device and now have enough facts to settle things.
All Images: Carlos Zahumenszky/Gizmodo en Español
Note: Nokia has refused to confirm whether the 3310 will make it to the Australian market – but with the 2G switch-off just months away, it doesn’t seem likely. Regardless, if you’re keen to get one while we still have access to 2G networks, buying it online shouldn’t be an issue.
What you CAN do with the new Nokia 3310
- Phone calls: Sometimes we forget that smartphones are also phones and you can use them to call people and talk to them. HMD claims the battery of the new 3310 offers about 22 hours of active use and about 744 hours (nearly a month) on stand-by.
- Send and receive SMS.
- Photos and videos: Admittedly with an awful quality camera (2 MP with a LED flash). Don’t expect to use the 3310 as a camera replacement like you can with smartphones.
- Listen to radio FM.
- Listen to your own music: The 33110 has a built-in MP3 player, so you can buy a cheap microSD card and add your music library it. The 3310 also supports regular headphones with a 3.5mm jack and wireless via Bluetooth 3.0, and the battery is supposed to last 51 hours while playing music.
- Check your calendar.
- Set up an alarm to wake you up.
- Make voice notes and written notes: That involves using its keyboard… which I don’t recommend.
- Use a calculator.
- Learn about the weather in your city.
- Play games: There are a few games installed on the phone, including a new version of Snake.
- Browse the web: The 3310 comes with a version of Opera browser and it is REALLY slow, because it only has support for 2.5G mobile networks. (We’re currently on 4G and hopefully moving onto 5G next year.) In some cases you might use the browser to consult something, but then you will remember how slow it is and reconsider. Besides, the only way to scroll is using the directional pad — which is just as awful as you’d think it would be.
What you CAN’T do with the new Nokia 3310
- Write messages in a fast and comfortable way: Prepare yourself to go back to that “u rote ur txt in teh 90s”, because you’re going to need it. Writing in an alphanumeric keyboard feels weird after a decade break.
- Navigate with GPS: Or use anything that has something to do with GPS, because it is not included in this phone.
- Social networks: If you’re trying to give up social media this is a perfect phone, because there are zero apps for accessing Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and others.
- Chat: You can’t install any modern messaging app. So forget about WhatsApp, Telegram, Snapchat, Facebook Messenger and anything like them.
Who would want to use a Nokia 3310? If you go travelling it would keep you accessible (as long there’s a mobile network available) for days without the need of a charger, and it is really lightweight, so you won’t notice it taking up space in your bag. The new Nokia 3310 could also be really useful for those grandparents that always seem to hate smartphones and only want a phone to call grandkids. Finally, the 3310 would be a real success in prisons. Besides it’s purportedly great battery life, it’s small and has nice round sides that suggest it would be easy to hide it in really tight places.
What I really want to know is if it’s as resistant as its predecessor. We know it isn’t water resistant, but could it survive a massive fall like Nokia’s old phones? It kinda looks like it could, and it feels like it too, but we won’t know until we review it when it’s available later this year.
This story originally appeared on Gizmodo.