Is Nokia Making a 'Smart' Move Bringing the Dumb Phone Back?

Is Nokia Making a 'Smart' Move Bringing the Dumb Phone Back?

Tara Bellucci
Feb 19, 2017

Do you miss the days when phones were for calling people, batteries lasted more than four hours, and the only distraction available was playing Snake? Good news, luddites, because Nokia is bringing back their beloved 3310, the dumb phone to end all dumb phones.

"Serial leaker" Evan Blass announced on Twitter that Nokia would be debuting the resurrected 3310 later this month at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, along with a few Android-based smartphones. It's reported that the nostalgic model will cost just €59 ($62), which is especially refreshing after last week's news about the iPhone 8 costing $1,000 (for the record, you could buy 16 Nokia 3310s for that price).

When it was introduced in 2000, the 3310 became the "it" phone to have (for reference, the Motorola RAZR would not go on sale until 2004). Tens of millions were sold, and through the early aughts, Nokia owned roughly half of the mobile phone market. It fit nicely in your hand, there was no unsightly and annoying antenna. Not to mention, it was virtually indestructible—a feature that would give any glass-clad smartphone owner pause. The battery lasted for days. In fact, nostalgia for the phone hasn't waned all that much—you can even purchase a 3310-lookalike case for your iPhone 6.

Really, the biggest downside to the brick-shaped phone today would be T9 texting, an annoyance that's mostly relegated to inputting your Netflix password into your smart TV via remote.

Since we're now solidly into the second half of the decade, it's right about the time that the 2000s are scheduled to come back into fashion.

What other Y2K trends would you want to bring back? Some options: MySpace, AIM, the classic iPod, Dashboard Confessional, Ashanti, trucker hats, Livestrong bracelets, Trading Spaces. Okay, we would definitely be here for a Trading Spaces reboot.

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