This Sunday, between filling out your ballots for your Oscar party and giving up on actually watching the Oscars because they’ve only presented like three awards in the first hour and forty-five minutes, plan to check in on HMD Global’s big device launch event. HMD Global is the parent company of Nokia, better known as probably the company that made your first cell phone. The devices in question are mostly par for the course for these types of manufacturers; amongst them, three new, Nokia-branded Android smartphones. It’s the fourth phone on HMD’s launch slate that’s catching people’s attention, however—a refreshed Nokia 3310, a.k.a. the invincible brick that was, in fact, probably your first cell phone.
A Modern Classic, Classically Remodernized
News that the 3310 was making a comeback began to circulate about two weeks ago, followed by much speculation as to just what would be different about the ol’ beast this time around. Plenty of folks were hoping that it would be a totally rethought smart phone in the iconic 3310 case style, filled with whatever stupid and ultimately unnecessary features people who get worked up about that kind of $#!t get worked up about.
Fortunately, it appears as though that won’t be the case. In fact, if the prevailing rumors are true, the new 3310 won’t be much different than the old 3310. It will still be merely a “feature phone,” not a smart phone, and the only significant upgrade is that the 2017 version will sport a full color screen, instead of the classic monochrome version of yore. The device will have a slightly revised exterior and a thinner overall profile, as well as a slightly larger keyboard. Other than that, it’s pretty much the same phone.
One additional feature that people are hoping will be included, but that has not yet been commented on by Nokia, is a removable battery. In the original 3310s, that sucker might as well have been welded in there—if your battery got out of whack, that’s all she wrote—it was new phone time. But, as battery technology has advance almost as much as phone technology in the decade-plus since the 3310’s first run, it seems all but inevitable that the new version will feature a removable battery.
None of these new or old features, whatever they may ultimately be revealed to be come February 26, are dealbreakers for me. As long as I can still play snake on that sucker, I’m in.