SAN FRANCISCO — The new Nokia feature phone is all about the past.
The iconic Nokia 3310 was a global hit when it launched in the pre-smartphone days of September 2000. And now the classic is back: HMD rolled out a suite of new Nokia phones at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on Sunday, including a relaunch of the 3310 that capitalizes on “dumb phone” nostalgia.
Back in 2000, the brick-like device did little more than text friends and take phone calls. The relaunched 3310 gets a bit of a makeover, but the $50 feature phone is still dead simple.
The modern handset is lighter and more colorful, with options in red, yellow, blue and gray. (I wouldn’t need my old duct-taped Superman case this time around.) It also features a color screen, 2-megapixel camera, microSD slot and the Opera Mini browser for basic web surfing.
Battery life is the biggest selling point: Unlike battery-sucking smartphones, the Nokia 3310 features 22 hours of talk time and a full month on standby. And in a fun throwback feature, the new 3310 features a revamped version of the game Snake.
The Nokia 3310, which will be available for €49 ($52) in the second quarter of the year, is not meant to compete with modern smartphones. The handset is designed to appeal to people who can’t afford modern smartphones. It could also be an attractive first phone for kids, a second phone to use while traveling, or a temporary “burner” phone.
The nostalgia of the 3310 grabbed a large share of the Nokia attention at Mobile World Congress. But HMD, which licenses the Nokia brand name and creates mobile devices, also unveiled three Android smartphones on Sunday.