All you die-hard Nokia lovers who are still living in nostalgia – rejoice! Nokia is bringing back its iconic Nokia 3310 feature phone in a new avatar – colourful, contemporary and still very affordable.
Announcing the launch at the Mobile World Congress 2017, Juho Sarvikas, Chief Product Officer of HMD Global, the Finnish company that holds the rights to market the ‘Nokia’ brand of phones, said that the company took the decision to re-launch the iconic phone based on demand from fans.
- Expected launch in India: Late April (or early May) 2017
- Expected price: Around Rs 4,000
So how does the new Nokia 3310 compare with the old one and will it elicit the same response as the original? For that, we need to go back to the time when original Nokia 3310 was first launched.
The Birth of Nokia 3310
Nokia 3310 was launched in the fourth quarter of 2000 and went on to sell a whopping 126 million phones worldwide. The phone pretty much dominated the GSM feature-based phone market at the time and was loaded with features that made it stand apart from the rest. That was before Apple, and later Samsung, entered the market with smartphones with features that simply crushed Nokia out of the market.
Nokia 3310 was designed at Nokia’s Copenhagen Design Centre in Denmark and quickly established its reputation as the most compact and sturdy feature phone, a position that was once held by the likes of Motorola. At the time, Nokia was in competition with Motorola and Ericsson, amongst others.
The model 3310 stood out for its user-friendly candy bar design with a 84 x 48 pixel monochrome screen. Besides an excellent battery, it also offered ‘voice-dialling’ of select numbers and users could send long text messages upto 459 characters by SMS – a feature that beat competition by almost 10 times.
It also featured utilities like calculator, stopwatch and a Nokia Network monitor. The phone came with four games – the very popular Snake II, Space Impact, Pairs II and Bantumi.
- Dimensions: 113 mm x 48 mm x 22 mm
- Display: Monochrome; five-line 84 x 48 pixel screen
- Weight: 113 gm
- Memory: Built-in
- CPU: MAD2WD1
- Battery: 900 mAh; 1000 mAh
- Sound: Monophonic ringtones.
Let’s Compare This With the New Version of 3310
The current phone comes in four colours: Yellow (gloss finish), Warm Red (gloss finish), Dark Blue (matte finish) and Grey (matte finish).
The most outstanding feature is the long battery life which will be a boon in India, where electricity can still be very erratic. It is expected to get a good response from semi-urban and rural areas, where this phone can do a record number of sales. The 3310 comes with single SIM and dual SIM options, and its compact and sturdy features will help withstand the rough and tumble of everyday life in India.
The major limitation with the new phone is that users will have to stick to the pre-loaded apps that come with the phone and they will not be able to install any other apps. It remains to be seen how this survives the Indian market, where smartphones and now, feature phones will have to include apps like government sponsored Bharat Interface for Money (BHIM) – to enable digital payments.
- Dimensions: 115.6 mm x 51 mm x 12.8 mm
- Display: 2.4 inch QVGA
- Weight: 113 gms
- Memory: 16 MB in-built ; expandable to 32 GB with microSD card
- Network: 2G; GSM 900/ 1800 MHz
- OS: Nokia Series 30+
- Camera: 2MP rear with LED flash
- Battery: Removable 1200 mAh with talk time of 22 hours and standby time upto 25.3 days
- Connectivity: Micro USB 2.0; Bluetooth 3.0 (SLAM); 3.5 mm headphone jack
- Apps: Internet access with web browsing through Opera web browser; FM Radio; Snake Game; MP3 player.
Will Nokia’s Gamble Payoff in India?
That’s a tough one. Nokia is banking on nostalgia to regain market share but a large part of the feature phone buyers have graduated to smartphones. Feature phones continue to remain popular in India within certain segments but here again, Chinese firms are offering feature-rich phones at extremely competitive prices. Let’s see if Nokia’s new avatar, the 3310 can win back market share with its ‘extended battery’ and other features.