What’s old is definitely new again.
The most hyped phone (no, not the iPhone 8) of the year, the new Nokia 3310 feature phone, is finally almost here (possibly launching in June, according to one UK listing). It got us thinking: What other phones should be revived and re-released?
Today’s phones are, honestly, boring. They’re just prettier, faster, longer-lasting versions of the original iPhone with larger screens.
But phones weren’t always so drab. The 90s until the mid-aughts were filled with quirky and bizarre designs that don’t stand the test of time, but were special nonetheless. I did a quick poll of my Mashable colleagues and on Twitter to see which phones people loved and want to see rebooted. Here are our top picks.
1. Motorola RAZR
Just as iconic as Nokia 3310, the Motorola RAZR was a game changer for flip phones. It went on to sell over 130 million units, making it the best-selling flip phone ever. It was thinner than almost every cellphone, had a futuristic metal keypad that became a signature Motorola design on many more cellphones like the SLVR, and a then revolutionary 1.3-megapixel camera. More than just a high tech phone, the RAZR was the first real “premium” phone for the masses before the iPhone landed on scene.
Motorola revived the RAZR branding, using it for the Droid RAZR in 2011, but aside from the name it didn’t have any of the RAZR’s stylish looks or features that made it so memorable.
With its unique screen that rotated with a flick and roomy QWERTY keyboard, the Sidekick (originally called Danger Hiptop) was the the cool alternative to the BlackBerry. All the kids had one — especially for AIM — and the trackball was to die for (remember, this was before touchscreens were ubiquitous).
The first Android phone, the G1 (T-Mobile Dream) and Motorola Droid were sorta like a modern Sidekicks, but they didn’t have the flickable screen. We’d love to see a thinner and sleeker Sidekick with a high-res touchscreen running the latest Android.
3. LG Chocolate
One of the most popular slider-style phones of the mid-aughts, the LG Chocolate and its delicious-sounding name was arguable the phone that helped put LG on the map globally and cement the company as a mobile powerhouse. When closed, it resembled an iPod, only the playback controls weren’t a Clickwheel. Ahh, when all phones wanted be as successful as the iPod. What a time!
4. Nokia N95
The Nokia N95 was the phone that had it all … until the iPhone launched and killed it pretty much overnight. Its 2.6-inch screen was large at the time, battery life long, and the 5-megapixel Carl Zeiss camera was lightyears better than the original iPhone. Not to mention, it had a front-facing camera way before Apple.
5. Motorola StarTAC
Before the RAZR catapulted Motorola to the top, there was the StarTAC. Released in 1996, the StarTAC was the first very first clamshell-style flip phone. It was a phone, used for making phone calls and not texting or Snapchatting. Its “compact” design is considerably bulky today, but its barebones features are just what we need to unplug from the constant bombardment of GIFs and notifications.