Nokia 3310 hands-on: retro fun at MWC 2017

Remember the Nokia 3310? It’s one of Nokia’s most successful phones of all time, and it’s back here at MWC 2017! Obviously, it’s not a smartphone, but it features several welcome upgrades over the original. And at just €49 ($52), it’s not going to break the bank. Read on…

Nokia’s managed to keep the 3310’s iconic design mostly intact. The edges have been rounded off, it’s 10mm thinner (just 12.8mm), and the keyboard layout is more symmetric. After all these years handling large rectangular slabs of glass, this small, basic handset just feels incredibly good in hand. It’s available in four colors, two glossy (yellow and red), and two matte (blue and grey).

Some things are much improved with the new 3310. Nokia outfitted the phone with a 2.4-inch 240 x 320-pixel TFT color screen, Bluetooth, and a 2-megapixel camera with LED flash. The latter won’t win any awards, but gets the job done in a pinch. A micro-USB port handles charging and data transfers, and there’s now a standard headphone jack, too. This, together with the built-in FM radio and micro SD slot (which supports cards up to 32GB), means the handset handles music duties with aplomb.

Snake, the classic game, is back on the new 3310. Purists will note, however, that this is a complete rethink of the original concept. Still, it’s a fun retro touch. Nokia also bundles the opera web browser with the new phone, in case you need basic Internet access. But since the handset only support 2.5G (EDGE) data speeds, don’t expect to use this for anything serious.

Speaking of 2.5G, the new 3310 only supports 900 and 1800MHz bands, so unfortunately, it’s not going to work in North America. Let’s hope Nokia makes US-compatible 3G (HSPA+) model in the future that allows Bluetooth (DUN) tethering. On the plus side, though, the 1200mAh battery under the removable back cover provides up to 22 hours of talk time and one month standy — impressive.

Ultimately, this is a nice second phone that’s cheap enough to be an impulse buy and sure to bring a smile only everyone’s face. There’s no word yet on when the new 3310 is shipping, but we’ll definitely keep you posted.