If you thought the rebirth of classic Nokia handsets was a short-term fad, think again. HMD Global, the business vehicle established specifically to create and market Nokia-branded mobile devices, has announced a new 3G version of the class Nokia 3310 feature phone.
The news comes seven months after VentureBeat reported that the age-old classic was being brought back from the dead with a face-lift and some new features fit for the modern era, such as Bluetooth. The phone packed just a 2.5G connection — which you would think would suffice for a phone that’s not built for heavy streaming or internetting.
The retro phone proved popular as it sold out in many markets, and this demand is seemingly behind the company’s decision to launch an upgraded Nokia 3310 replete with 3G connectivity.
HMD Global has now revealed that a 3G incarnation will be landing from mid-October, though it has only provided pricing in euros — it will retail at a “global average” price of €69, which is roughly $80 USD. The 2.5G Nokia 3310 never made it to the U.S, because it wouldn’t work on U.S. networks, but a 3G version had been rumored after HMD Global filed an application with the FCC for a 3G device that resembled the 3310’s model number. Now we know for sure that a 3G unit is on the way, this could finally pave the way for the thrifty throwback to make its way Stateside.
“Our reimagining of the Nokia 3310 has been a global and cultural phenomenon,” said HMD Global’s chief product officer Juho Sarvikas. “In a world dominated by smartphones, the mix of nostalgia and a beautiful phone that just keeps going has captured people’s imagination. Our fans around the world have been asking for this iconic phone to support 3G. Fans asked, we listened, and today welcome the Nokia 3310 3G.”
Support for 3G will also future-proof the phone in other markets that may phase out 2G connectivity at a later point. However, bumping up the connectivity also has some trade-offs, as it means it now promises just 6.5 hours of talk time now compared to the more than 22 hours on the 2.5G version.
In addition to 3G, the new Nokia 3310 also sports new features including a customizable interface that lets you change the icon colors and positions on the screen. There is no word yet on whether HMD Global will be pre-installing surveys on the device as it has done with other Nokia phones this year.
The Nokia brand has been brought back to a number of mobile phones over the past year, from cheap feature phones and mid-range smartphones all the way up to its Nokia 8 flagship last month.
VentureBeat has reached out to HMD Global to ask what markets the Nokia 3310 3G will be available in, and will update here if or when we hear back.