Do you remember the Nokia 3310? Of course you do, if you’re of a certain age, at least. All of us digital settlers and immigrants likely owned one of these phones or known someone who did. They might have been somewhat ugly, but they were compact and sturdy, and could make a dent in a car bonnet without getting a scratch on them. They were one of the best selling phone models ever—126 million handsets has to be a ringing recommendation. The 3310 is still available, but if you’re a sucker for nostalgia, note that it was updated and spruced up for the times with a colour display, a camera and a microSD card slot.
Which brings us to the burning question: What is a Rs 3,599 feature phone doing in a luxury tech space? The answer: Gresso, makers of luxury phones and grand hi-tech gadgets, decided to give the iconic handset a lavish upgrade just about a year ago. They replaced the original plastic body with aircraft-grade titanium, taking it from a budget piece to a luxury product in one fell swoop. Other features of the rebranded 3310, such as dual-SIM capabilities, 2 MP camera and 22-hour talk time, along with 32GB storage, remain intact.
Rebranded as the Gresso 3310, the lavish makeover for this retro phone is centres around the aforementioned titanium outer body. Grade-five titanium, as used in the aerospace industry, is half the weight of stainless steel but far more durable. Gresso is also known for its minimalistic design sensibilities, and thus, the 3310 has been crafted to give it their classic style. Each piece is individually made from a solid titanium plate, and the process is said to take five hours. In addition, the keypad is made of titanium as well, each key “hand polished by a single master craftsman, with meticulous attention to detail”.
The Gresso 3310 is available in two colours, titanium grey and black, the latter a result of DLC (diamond-like carbon) coating that is common in the luxury Swiss watch industry. The grey version features hand-polished borders. Whichever version you order, your piece will come in a Gresso signature black leather box, with a certificate of authenticity, user manual and a charger.
First revealed at the 2017 Mobile World Congress, the Gresso 3310 is a limited-edition product; only 3,310 pieces are available. Moreover, each piece has its individual number engraved on the back plate—heck, you can even choose your own special number, and if it’s available, it will be immortalised in titanium for you. Gresso also offers personalised engraving services.
At $4,500, this luxed-up version of the Nokia 3310 has been cheekily referred to by some reviewers as the phone you buy if you have more money than sense. On the bright side, the Gresso 3310 will remain unharmed if dropped from 10 metres and will take 250 kg of weight without a groan. What’s more, Gresso will express-ship your product to you anywhere in the world for free. Reason enough to go retro in style?