Hold the phone – Nokia has announced its return to the mobile (cell) market. The Finnish telecoms giant, which was once the biggest producer of mobile handsets in the world, has agreed with Microsoft to begin designing phones again in 2016.
Microsoft bought the company’s faltering mobile phone unit for €5.44bn (£4.6bn) in 2013, after declining sales in the face of competition from Apple. But now that Nokia’s chief executive Rajeev Suri has said Nokia is to return, we can’t help harking back to its pièce de résistance: the Nokia 3210. Here’s why we loved it.
The battery never died
The iPhone 6 has an average battery life of less than a day, the Samsung Galaxy S6 isn’t much better. The 3210? Would last for, like, a week. Possibly two weeks, depending on how often Snake was played.
There’s a reason why this joke has done the rounds on the internet:
Just put on a jacket I last wore at a wedding in 2001 and found a Nokia 3210 in the pocket. It still has 2 bars of battery left
It literally did not break. Ever
We all know that the phone shops in the middle of inner city shopping malls are making a killing from smashed smartphone screens. It would never happen with the sturdy 3210, weighing 153g. The 3210 could survive an atom bomb, an earthquake and possibly the two combined.
Drop it on the floor and the cover would pop off, the battery spit out, but it’d be the equivalent of a chipped fingernail. Polish it off, snap it back together, and everything would be ok. No wonder people now joke that dropping the handset would damage the floor, and not the other way around.
All the colours!
Never has the word “fascia” been so popular as in the era of the 3210. We were all about the fasciae. The number of colours! The glitter ones! The decals! The stickers! The knock-off ones breaching numerous different film and music copyright! The coloured rubber keyboard panels! The fluffy covers! There was nothing that was off-limits when it came to decorating the 3210. Porn-inspired fasciae, covers with, randomly, brands of chocolate on them.
None of this shit with an iPhone. “Space grey” and “slate”? Could anything be more boring?
Sure, now the greatest Electronic Arts and Rockstar games are available at the tap of an app, gobbling up phone space and hours of time. You can raise a whole family on The Sims or win the Premier League on Fifa, but nothing can beat the pure, and purist, adrenaline rush of Snake.
Pause and you were screwed. Everyone knew that, a rookie error. Apparently, someone once conquered Snake, and the proof is in this 13 minute gif. The game was still available to play as a YouTube easter egg until 2014, when Google took it away. Don’t be evil? Indeed.
Feeling all nostalgic now? Never fear – the 3210 is still available to buy on eBay. Not only that, but so are the accessories. Smartphones? Meh.
• This article was amended on 22 June 2015. Rajeev Suri is the chief executive of Nokia, not Microsoft as an earlier article said.
guardian.co.uk © Guardian News & Media Limited 2010