Amidst a wave of nostalgia, the Nokia 3310 is finally back.
The original Nokia 3310 launched way back in 2000 and was one of the most popular phones in history with 126 million units sold worldwide. One of Nokia’s most iconic devices, it was also popular for being extremely durable.
After being discontinued, Nokia relaunched it in February of this year.
We’ve gotten our hands on the review unit, so let’s see what the 2017 refresh of the original Nokia 3310 has to offer, how it compares to its predecessor and if it is actually worth buying.
Detailed Review (Urdu)
Starting with the design, the new 3310 features the same candybar form factor as the original.
There’s a distinctive border around the display, going all the way around the directional-pad and the 2 keys on either side of it. You get a standard alphanumeric keypad at the front. On the top of the display, you have your earpiece above the Nokia branding. Moving on to the back of the phone, you get the primary camera, an LED flash, a loud speaker and the Nokia branding on the back cover.
At the bottom of the phone you have the 3.5mm headphone jack. Finally on top of the phone, you get a standard microUSB port for charging.
The dimensions measure in at 115.6 x 51 x 12.8 mm, making it a very small phone. The weight is also only just 79.6g which makes it 57.4g lighter than the original 3310. The new one is in fact so light and small that you can fit it in the same jean pocket as your other 5.5-inch smartphone and still be able to forget that you have another phone in your pocket.
Holding it in one hand is a very comfortable experience and it doesn’t feel like the phone will slip out of your grip. Typing can be a bit tough at first, especially if you are coming from a larger smartphone or if you’re just not used to the alphanumeric keypad.
Color options available for the Nokia 3310 include Blue, Warm Red, Yellow and Grey. The one you’ll be seeing in this review will be a Warm Red color.
The display on the Nokia 3310 is nothing to boast about and it won’t be winning any competitions. To put it simply, the 3310 features a 2.4-inch screen with a resolution of 240×320 pixels which results in about 167 pixels per inch.
It’s definitely not the sharpest display around and you can also spot individual pixels on the screen but being a feature phone, it’s likely that you won’t be looking forward to some 1080p video playback. In short, enough to get the job done but nothing spectacular.
Gracing the Nokia 3310 isn’t the latest and greatest version of Android or Windows Mobile, but in fact the Nokia Series 30+ software. However, it is not the same Nokia Series 30 OS that is used by some other feature phones. This software is developed by MediaTek.
Coming to the software itself, the 3310 comes with a wide variety of stock apps and even an application store.
Some of the basic apps include Contacts, Photos, Messaging, Internet, Calendar, Converter and lots of other apps that you expect to come pre-installed with any other OS on the market. That being said, you get nowhere near the number of apps that you are able to install in any modern smartphone.
The OS itself is easy to navigate using the d-pad available. It even has a Opera browser that can open basic websites. I tried opening up Google.com which was painfully slow and I had to give up.
Another thing that I feel is lacking heavily on this software is WhatsApp. It’s the a need of the modern day and even most feature phones released in the past, especially from Nokia, had WhatsApp either pre-installed or available on the application store.
Now, since we are talking about software and the Nokia 3310, how can we forget Snake? Yes, the iconic game is back on the new 3310, although it’s gotten a bit of a makeover. The new Snake is made by Gameloft and let me break the news to you now, it looks nothing like the original.
Firstly it is now in color. The controls are mostly the same as you would expect. You can either control the snake using the d-pad or the 4 and 6 number keys on the keypad.
The standard game mode that you get to play to is a timed one where you have to eat as many apples as you can under a specified amount of time. The levels progresses as you get better high scores and the difficulty increases. Or you can play the survival mode where all you have to do is eat apples and survive for as long as possible from bombs and eating yourself.
It was still fun to play this game once again on Nokia phone and I am happy to say that it did not turn out to be a disappointment.
As mentioned earlier, the Nokia 3310 didn’t come back to join the specs war, nor does want to compete against any flagships Smartphones for its lost glory.
The original 3310 didn’t have a camera at all, but the new one does. It’s nothing to boast about either. The sensor is a fixed focus 2MP along with just an LED flash.
Picture quality is average to say the least. However, most of the shots, when exported to another smartphone, weren’t half as bad as I was expecting them to be.
Quality was not worse than what you would think it would be on paper. Don’t get me wrong, the quality is no way near as a smartphone but if you have used a feature phone in the past and you compare it with the 3310, you will see the difference.
You can take a look at the some of the samples below to judge for yourself. Video recording was noticeably very bad when viewed on another device.
The battery on the new Nokia 3310 also sees a jump from the original’s 900mAh to 1,200mAh. Nokia claims that the 3310 will be able to last for 22 hours talk time and up to 30 days of stand-by time. Although I have not been able to test the battery life for that long, but I do have around 2 hours of talk time clocked in just 7 days and a lot of Snake gameplays.
In these 7 days I haven’t charged the phone once (except on the first day) and as far as I can see from the bars in the battery icon, I have around 50% battery left.
That is not living up to Nokia’s claim but it is still more than enough to give you days and days of backup and definitely has more battery life than any smartphone on the market right now.
The Nokia 3310 follows the modern phones and includes dual-SIM card slots and a microSD card. One disappointing thing about the 3310 is that it uses 2.5G and not 3G or 4G.
That makes web browsing extremely and unbearably slow. Wi-Fi is also not present which makes matters worse. It does have Bluetooth 3.0 so you can transfer songs and photos between your other devices.
Looking at the Nokia 3310 in the age of modern smartphones, you can’t fathom how such a device can exist or is even built in this age. Not only that, but its popularity is soaring through the roof and people are going crazy over it. It’s looks like the new in thing, that everyone should have now. Why is it gaining such massive popularity? Nostalgia is the answer.
We know that the Nokia 3310 doesn’t bring anything new to the table but we all still want one. It’s clear that it won’t replace your smartphone at all. But it can be kept as a backup phone for times when you are travelling and are unsure that you will be able to charge your smartphone once a day, where the Nokia 3310 will last you days.
Looking at the new Nokia 3310 objectively, it is a definite upgrade over its predecessor however that was to be expected since it’s being released 17 years after the original. It does its job as well as it can considering it’s limited by virtue of being a feature phone.
So if you are drawn to the nostalgia that comes alongside the new Nokia 3310 at the price tag of Rs. 6,500, then please by all means buy the phone and you won’t be disappointed.
But if you’re expecting value for money, there are many other phones on the market that can do the job just as well or better.