JAPAN - FEBRUARY 15: Launched on the 1st September 2000, the Nokia 3310 featured advanced messaging, personalisation with Xpress-on covers and screensavers, vibra feature, time management functions, voice dialling, picture messaging, predictive text input and games. It also introduced ?mobile chat? using the Nokia Friends-Talk service, which allows users to have conversations using SMS (Short Message Service). This is a globally accepted wireless service that enables the transmission of messages between mobile users and external systems such as e-mail, paging, and voice-mail. (Photo by SSPL/Getty Images)
That’s right! One of the most popular mobile phones of its era is finding its way back on the market after a break of 17yrs. The nearly indestructible phone will be re-launched in the upcoming Mobile World Congress in Barcelona alongside three other Nokia brands, the Nokia 3, 5, and 6.
Originally launched in 2000 by the Finnish phone giants Nokia, the 3310 was compact, sturdy, reliable and had a long lasting battery life.
Driven by names like Apple and Samsung, the market for mobiles progressed, and Nokia failed to make a competitive transition into the smartphone market, and were bought out by Microsoft in 2014. Microsoft then rebranded the new phones under the ‘Lumia’ name, and sold the old Nokia rights to a subsidiary of the Taiwanese giants Foxconn, called HMD Global. Foxconn will manufacture the Nokia phones via another subsidiary company, FIH Mobile.
HMD have pledged to spend $500M developing and promoting the ‘old’ Nokia brand and have retained many of the original Nokia staff to assist them in their headquarters in Finland. Nokia will receive a royalty from HMD for every phone sold.
Although we now have more advanced smartphones with sophisticated features, the Nokia 3310, in its day hosted a range of popular cutting edge features such as predictable text input, smart messaging, calculator, voice dial, mobile chat mode for SMS, currency converter, clock, alarm clock, stopwatch and games such as Snake II and Bantumi.
The ‘new’ 3310 phone will be a ‘modern version’ but will maintain its original features so as to offer the market a long battery life and rugged reliability once again as its main selling points. They will be priced at $59, (about Ksh. 6500) and initially will be sold through third-party channels, like Amazon Marketplace and eBay.