My first mobile device was back in 2000… the iconic Nokia 3310. What a phone! What a mighty, mighty, fine phone. To this day, it remains one of the most iconic, acclaimed, and successful additions under the Nokia brand. Why?
It was just a big slice of awesome humble pie that managed to become a ground-breaking part of mobile phone history. So, let’s look at 18 fun facts about the Nokia 3310 to remember our beginnings and pay homage to great tech.
- Mobile devices today have an average battery life of just 11-14 hours. The Nokia 3310 had an astounding 55 hours of talk time. Yep, that’s two entire days, and the standby time was a staggering 245 hours, or 10 days.
- With the Nokia 3310, you were eight seconds from powering up to opening any feature you wanted. Today, you’re looking at at least 20 seconds for your smartphone to boot up and be ready for action from off to on.
- It’s a nation’s emoji! With a rocker and sauna, the Nokia 3310 was chosen as one of three emojis to represent Finland. It was chosen for its unbreakable reputation.
- Speaking of indestructible, the 3310 is the only mobile phone to hold that user claim. There are reports on everything from dropping it from deadly heights to trains running it over without harm.
- When Nokia decided to release a throwback in 2017, the Nokia 3310 was it. Even with more functions, a modernized design, and a reception that had the device selling out in many marketplaces, it ended as lackluster compared to its namesake.
- It had the Snake game, which had so many players that it gained a 2010 Guinness World Record with a billion players. In 2013, a Russian player reportedly finally beat the game, but the claim was backed by little evidence.
- It’s a life saver, or at least according to social media claims and urban legend. The 3310, for example, allegedly saved a soldier shot in Afghanistan when it trapped a bullet that would’ve otherwise entered his chest.
- Businesses adopted it as their go-to tech. Internal antenna, smaller measurements, sleekness… all features that made it the “it” tech that every business wanted.
- Customization was the name of the game. Users loved the case-changing abilities, settings range, and onboard composer app allowing different numbers to make different sounds for users to customized their own musical ringtone.
- Cost was phenomenal. At a mere $166 for the original and $55 for the revamp, the prices were a drop in the bucket compared to the starting price of $1,000 for today’s most popular mobile devices.
- Today’s standard messaging character amount is around 160. The 3310 surpassed all competitors and expectations in offering three times the norm – a 459 messaging character limit.
- It paved the way for predictive autocorrect, whether you view that as good or bad. Luckily, Nokia offered instructions on how to turn the feature off for those in the latter group.
- It outsold Apple. iPhone sold 25 million units when it went on sale. A win by anyone’s standards until you consider the Nokia 3310 sold 126 million units.
- The longevity hasn’t been replicated. My dad is among many others still using the original 3310 they purchased over 20 years ago.
- Simplicity was the goal. The 3310 is actually a minimalist design out of Denmark. It was about suiting the user’s needs not forcing them to adopt to adapt, which ironically became groundbreaking.
- The 3310 was once used as a projectile weapon when it was thrown at police by a protestor in a violent riot over in Indonesia.
- Trailblazer for internet chat. In chat mode, messages in enhanced SMS format could be sent and received.
Awesome, right? So, why isn’t everyone sporting the 3310 today? More has been added as some has been sacrificed in the name of technological advancement, but one thing is for certain. Every dog has his day, and the Nokia 3310 was certainly the top dog of its day.