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Old Nokia 3310 vs new Nokia 3310: What’s changed in 17 years?

Wondering if picking up a new Nokia 3310 is worth it when you’ve still got your old one kicking about? Here’s what’s changed

The Nokia 3310 is, for many, THE mobile phone. Screw your smartphones and Gorilla Glass, Nokia’s 17-year-old 3310 was the first truly indestructible device on the planet. Not only could it survive being dropped, it’d probably make a crack in the pavement rather than on its bulletproof plastic casing.

Nokia is now back into the mobile phone space via a licensing deal with HMD Global, and the newly announced Nokia 3310 is an homage to an age where Nokia ruled the roost – not Samsung or Apple. But what has actually changed in those intervening 17 years? Worry not, we’ll break down the differences between old and new for you.

Nokia 3310 vs Nokia 3310 (2017): Display

The original Nokia 3310 was built in an age where colour displays just weren’t a thing on mobiles – especially affordable ones. This meant the Nokia 3310 of yore featured an 84 x 84-pixel monochrome screen capable of displaying five lines of text at a time. For comparison, the iPhone 7 Plus has 514 times more pixels as part of its Retina display.

The new Nokia 3310 doesn’t opt for monochrome originality, however, instead using a 2.4in 240 x 320-pixel colour QVGA screen. This mean it’s great for use in daylight thanks to its backlit pixels (as opposed to the original 3310’s front-illuminated screen), and still looks firmly like a modern phone.

Nokia 3310 vs Nokia 3310 (2017): Design

Now, you may be surprised to know that the new Nokia 3310 doesn’t actually look all that similar to the original 3310. HMD Global calls this an “homage” to the original, but that doesn’t mean it has to really look like one. This year’s 3310 sports a multi-way floating directional pad and a slightly more bulbous design than the original’s blocky aesthetic. There’s still an illuminated keypad, but to look at the two phones side by side you’d be hard pressed to say they were both 3310s.

Unsurprisingly, the new 3310 is also slightly smaller and lighter than its predecessor. Weighing just 79.6g, it’s almost half as heavy as the 133g original. In size terms it’s roughly the same, although by being just that little bit slimmer than 2000’s model, it works out to be a little smaller in the hand overall, measuring just 51 x 12.8 x 115.6mm (WDH) to the original’s 44W x 22D x 113mm.

One key design feature that’s been removed from this year’s Nokia 3310 revival is, quite possibly, the one thing everyone remembers the 3310 so well for – removable faceplates. Yes, that’s right, no more heading down to the weekend market to pick up a glossy The Simpsons or Spongebob Squarepants mobile case from a dodgy wheeler-dealer. This year’s 3310 only comes in a glossy “warm red” and “yellow, or the matte-finished “dark blue” and “grey” colours more reminiscent of the original.

Nokia 3310 vs Nokia 3310 (2017): Battery life

Everyone remembers the 3310 having a fantastic battery life, outlasting modern smartphones by a factor that doesn’t even bear thinking about. Of course, when you’re only powering an 84 x 84-pixel monochrome screen and not worrying about Wi-Fi signal hunting or background processes, the battery will last forever.

For the new Nokia 3310, Nokia has attempted to keep the killer battery life by promising a solid day of talk time (22 hours) and a standby time of up to a month between charges. It’s unlikely it will last anywhere near the unfathomable number of days you remember your original 3310 giving you, but it’s certainly enough to forgo the charger for a day or two.

Nokia 3310 vs Nokia 3310 (2017): Features

At the time, the original 3310 was packed with features most phones didn’t have. By today’s standards, it’s a rather meek offering, but back in the year 2000 you’d be talk of the town thanks to the 3310’s calculator, stopwatch and reminder functions alongside voice dialling and SMS texts. The 3310 also came with four games, one of which was the immensely popular Snake II – which many remember simply as Snake despite it being a wholly different game.

The new Nokia 3310 can boast all the same features, albeit with a new version of Snake bundled in. You’ll also get a FM radio tuner and an MP3 player with this year’s 3310, allowing you to really make the most of its generous 16MB internal storage – although it does have a microSD slot for up to 32GB too.

If that wasn’t enough, the new 3310 is also equipped with a 2-megapixel, rear-facing camera complete with LED flash. Don’t expect it to be the most fantastic camera in the world, but as you won’t be sharing them to the likes of Facebook or Instagram, that probably doesn’t matter too much.

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