I don’t know about you, but lately, I’m in a need of a digital detox. The main reason for that is the constant availability of me or mostly insignificant internet stuff for me thanks to the smartphone. I dealt with the notifications by turning most of them off and for years now I receive calls and SMS messages over the watch, so the phone is always muted. I also scheduled the DND option to start after 22:00 both for smartphone and watch, and this is all going OK for now. However, sometimes I wish I could be less distracted by apps (mostly bloody 9gag) and that could be easily solved by going to featurephone. But, the transition would be hard since I would miss the convenience of chatting with friends over WhatsApp and I’m used to mobile banking, Google pay and other stuff.
Now, since I’m not that big smartphone user, but I am used to some apps, the best solution would be to go for an affordable entry smartphone or switch to some interesting feature phone. Let’s explore the latest options that Nokia Mobile is offering. Nokia 2660 Flip seems like a nice device with an interesting design and basic features. On the other hand, there is Nokia C31 with not such a great camera but a big screen, BT 4.2, and Android OS which supports most of the popular apps although there is no NFC so Google Pay won’t work.
Let’s start with the basics. Nokia 2660 Flip and it’s the most recent addition to Nokia Originals feature phone line-up that should set you back around 70 USD depending on where you live. Its key selling points are a large display and easy to press buttons which means that Nokia Mobile is also targeting the elderly population.
The box holds the handset obviously but there is also a micro-USB charging brick some product brochures and 1450 milliamps replaceable battery
The build quality looks affordable. The phone is made of polycarbonate plastic, and it feels well put together. However, it is quite light, but it should withstand an accidental drop or two without any issues. The phone has two displays, a smaller 1.77-inch display on the outside so you can check time and notifications and inner and larger 2.8-inch display for all the rest that phone is offering. Nokia 2660 Flip has a headphone jack and an emergency key which can be reprogrammed to call your loved one. It supports two SIM cards with 4G LTE both cards simultaneously, a wireless and wired FM radio, and you can expand the internal memory up to a 32 gigabyte SD card which is something that you’ll need to do if you plan on adding any mp3 files. You can buy an additional cradle charging accessory for it so you can easily charge it by just inserting it into the cradle.
The phone also has hearing aid compatibility and bluetooth so you can connect your earbuds to this for example¸. VGA camera is enough for pasing basic info. Don’t expect much from 0.3 megapixels. There is a led flash but you’ll be using it mostly asa a torch.
The keypad is comfortable and the buttons are quite large with excellent tactile feedback. Nokia’s s30 plus operating system is running inside so don’t expect WhatsApp, Instagram, twitter, facebook or Telegram support. This OS is designed not to be very smart but rather very power efficient and to do the basics quite well so you’ll mainly be using this to make phone calls listening to music if you manually add mp3 files on it send the occasional SMS here and there. Web browser is just for the absolute necessities. You can expect to find basic utility apps such as an alarm clock, a calendar, a calculator, a converter, and stuff like that.
In case you are gamer the phone comes with some classic games such as Snake and Tetris. There are some other games that come pre-installed but they’re only trials, so you need to pay in order to access their full versions.
The battery life should be OK for up to 20 days of standby time if you have dual sim cards both with 4g but that’s assuming you’re not using the device. However, the reality is between 5 and 10 days of usage but it depends on how often you do calls. The is only one decently loud loudspeaker which should make you hear calls even in a noisy environment. This phone might be the right choice for somebody who’s just trying to unwind and avoid all the social media distractions of the world, or it can be used as a nice secondary phone just to make phone calls and to get the additional benefit of the extra battery life on top of your smartphone. Or it can also be used by a loved one who doesn’t want to bother themselves with all the smart features either because they don’t understand it or they don’t care about it at all.
In the end, there is still over a billion people that will be using feature phones in 2022, and some analysts are saying that the market for these phones should be stable till 2026. By then, the entry models should be as good as some god midrange phones.
Nokia C31 for those of you who don’t know the C Series is Nokia’s entry-level series that’s aimed at first-time smartphone buyers so it’s for somebody who’s transitioning from a feature phone to a smartphone and doesn’t want to spend a lot of money.
The C31 is priced at 130 USD approximately worldwide and it comes with plenty of smartphone features but with a bit of compromises in order to achieve that price point. The compromises are, for example, a micro-USB port is there, also a rear-firing speaker underneath the camera which is not the best one out there, mediocre at best. There’s also a fingerprint scanner on the back of the device which is a simpler solution than having it mounted on the power button. Still, you can expand the memory of the device using a Micro SD card unlike X30, and you can use two SIM cards at the same time. There is also a 3.5 millimetre audio port, and C31 is available in 4/128GB memory arrangement which is convenient.
The build quality is of its best aspects. It is nicely built it is for its price point, with the whole device being made from polycarbonate plastic with a textured back. It also has an ip52 dust and splash resistance rating so if it’s accidentally sprayed by water, it shouldn’t have any problems. It feels nice and solid in the hand and is no less than a device that costs about twice as much.
Nokia C31 uses a Unisoc SC 9000, an Octa Core processor built on a 28-nanometre architecture which is pretty ancient but will save up your battery by sacrificing performance. This phone does look like a pimped-up feature phone.
Four key selling points of C31 should be a pretty large 6.7 7-inch HD Plus display, a 5050 milliamps battery, stock Android 12 out of the box and rear 13 MP camera followed by the 2-megapixel macro camera and the 2-megapixel depth sensor.