Next generation communications in India are poised to take a strange turn, as word emerged about HMD Global's plans for the Nokia (News - Alert) 3310, a device that might look familiar, but has a whole new set of horses under its metaphorical hood. Though the Nokia 3310 has been effectively phased out for better than 10 years, HMD Global is set to bring it back in a big way.
The 3310 was expected to hit the market in India sometime in May, but new reports suggest that date has been bumped back a little bit, and the devices will be on hand by the end of June. HMD Global has been actively considering building an offline presence in India to go along with this device, with reports suggesting the company—who has the rights to market the Nokia brand—is looking to pull in over 400 individual distributors along with establishing 300 separate service centers.
Meanwhile, the 3310 itself is packing quite a tech package for a feature phone, though in an odd way, it almost eschews next generation communications altogether. The device won't connect to 4G, or even to 3G, but instead turns to 2.5G connectivity for its browsing and similar operations. It's running the S30+ operating system, which does support Web browsing, and displays the results of said browsing on a 2.4 inch display.
The device can also yield a month of stand-by on a single charge, though that drops to just 22 hours of actual talk time. That's up substantially over previous models, which yielded closer to two hours. It further includes a two megapixel rear-mounted camera, and even includes an updated version of the ultimate in Nokia-based classic games, “Snake.”
It's not immediately clear why HMD Global is releasing such a lower-tier device, unless it's going after some kind of penetration market strategy. The device is certainly inexpensive—that much is almost breathtakingly clear—but it's so far behind by even the most basic standards of next generation communications that it's akin to a step backward in the technology continuum. Given that we're seeing this largely come out in India, it could be a way to get more users into the fold overall, which is a reasonable enough market strategy. Though why it's also targeting more first-world countries like Germany is unclear as well.
HMD Global's plan doesn't make a lot of sense on the surface, but at least it's taking a run at it. It's also bringing out a functional device at rock-bottom prices, which could end up with some value of its own.
Edited by Alicia Young