There’s always a buzz around the latest smartphone releases. What new gadgets, upgraded and cutting-edge tech might they have in store for us this time? Yet, for the most part, this new smartphone love-in can be pretty short lived; a hit for a year or two and then we’re over them. They become obsolete. This isn’t the case for all phones though – there are a chosen few that really hit the mark and become a cult classic. Even though they’re retro they’re built to last and we love’em!
Take a look at our top 5 blasts from the past and find out what makes them rock even now!
1. Nokia 3120
The Nokia 3120 is a great phone if you’re not looking for bells and whistles. It does what it sets out to do and it does it brilliantly! It’s been around since 2008 and remains a popular choice.
It’s lightweight yet really sturdy, with owners reporting having dropped it multiple times without so much as a scratch – not something we hear about a lot of phones! It’s also easy to use (partly because it just doesn’t bother with all the extras) and offers long talk time and excellent battery life. If you’re in the market for a basic phone and want to simplify your life you can’t go far wrong with a Nokia 3120.
2. Sony Xperia E3
The Sony Xperia E3 was a great mid-range phone when it was released and it still holds its own today.
The design is modern with curved edges (to help with those inevitable drops) and it beats out many other phones with its 2-day battery life – easily its best-selling point. It’s a sleek little number made to slip into your pocket and to be used easily with one hand making it well… handy.
The E3 has a decent-sized screen and an ok camera and visuals, and impressive connectivity making everything you need to do both quick and easy.
The only thing people don’t like is the small 4GB storage, but that’s a problem easily solved with the addition of an SD card. Much like the Nokia 3120, it does what it should and it does it well, making it a hit with anyone looking for something streamline and affordable.
3. Motorola V3
The Motorola V3 is one of the bestselling flip phones of all time; selling over 130 million units, partly due to the sleek stylish design and thin profile.
It’s only 53mm wide and 13.9mm thick and even after 16 years still has a futuristic air about (very “beam me up Scotty!”). In addition, it offers a fairly impressive 7 hours of talk time and 17 hours of standby time. The keyboard is made from single sheet of aluminium and is easy to use if you’re a fan of predictive text. It does come with a few classic games can actually get online to boot. But that wasn’t really what old school phones were about was it? This phone’s all about style and usability; an uncomplicated phone with a classy design, perfect for getting back to basics in style.
4. BlackBerry Bold 9790
Whatever happened to the BlackBerry? There was a time when they were the phone everyone owned or wanted to own. The 9790 was released as a smaller, friendlier and slightly easier on the wallet version of the BlackBerry. It features a touchscreen and their standard Qwerty Keyboard – which a lot of phones didn’t have at the time. It also has a 5mp camera, not great by today’s standards but good enough for the odd random selfie of you aren’t an Insta addict. People often find the curved keys of the BlackBerry keyboard easier to use than the standard touchscreen keyboard that we’re more used to today and the BlackBerry 9790 is a great example of a classic phone that still has a certain class and panache.
5. Doro 5516
The Doro 5516 is another example of a well-made, classic phone that’s easy to use. It has great battery life with 8 hours of talk time and 20 hours of standby and Which? rates it among the best basic phones you can buy. It takes good pictures and is neat and easy to carry around without looking too old fashioned. It even has an assistance button for anyone who wants a bit of extra security when they’re out and about. The ring tones and sounds are easy to hear and there are direct buttons to basic functions like a torch, email access and more. A great little all-rounder for anyone looking for a user-friendly phone that’s a blast from the past.
So, there you have it. If the time has come in your life to simplify things and step away from Instagram, TikTok and Snapchat then maybe it’s time to take a look at an old school phone. They do everything you really need on a day to day basis and are often sturdier and more reliable than your latest uber-expensive smartphone!