After 22 years since its first launch, Nokia has again surprised us with this retro classic 8110 “banana phone” rebooted into a feature phone with 4G. This is not the exact replica of this classic phone, but it certainly feels like one.
Since an early age, I have always been in favour of sliding phones as I think they look smart and stylish. Just imagine by only using one hand to slide, you are always ready to answer or make a call in style. This is why I am so thrilled to get this Nokia 8110 4G black from AO.com for review. The other option was to have the striking yellow banana phone which is a definite ‘no’ from me! I do not want to draw unnecessary attention to myself from passers-by!
This is a simple budget phone with a small selection of good apps. The user experience is very easy to grasp and takes me back to my teenage years of using Nokia phones. It would be unfair to compare it to high-end smartphones but this phone targets a different market. This is suitable for anyone looking for a simple-to-use, pared-back phone without the distraction of having thousands of apps through the app store. Its strengths are that it makes and receives calls with 4G, allows you to browse the internet, use Google Maps and listen to the radio. The KaiOS operating system does have an app store, but it’s a very limited choice, which is great for my children for example.
First, let’s take a look at the appearance of this phone. It looks simple and very smart. The curved shape and the length of the phone sits well in my pocket. As a budget phone, this is not going to be on the wish list for thieves which gives some peace of mind for children. It is not a touchscreen phone, but you may still want to place a screen protector to avoid any scratches from key etc. The buttons on the phone feel quite small for my use but my young children are able to use it with ease.
This is a dual-SIM phone that can take a micro-SIM and a nano-SIM in the other SIM slot. I did struggle to take off the phone cover to place the battery and SIM as it is very secure. After very carefully using a couple of screwdrivers, my husband and I managed to lift it off without damaging the cover.
This phone only comes with a very small 4GB internal storage but does allow you to expand the storage with a micro-SD card of up to 32 GB. Once I placed the battery in, I immediately charged the phone. During charging, I’ve not found a way to know whether the phone is fully charged without having to go into the battery menu and it would be nice if it showed the percentage on the home screen in addition to just the battery icon.
It has a 2MP rear camera and the photos and videos and this low resolution is reflected in the picture quality. The sound quality of the video is not too bad though. Whether it’s landscape or portrait image or video taken, it won’t rotate in the gallery. This is definitely not a phone for you, if you like to take lots of photos, videos or selfies as it doesn’t have a front facing camera!
However, this phone is pretty smart thanks to Google. There are Google Maps and Google Assistant. It is not a great experience accessing maps through a 2.4-inch screen but it could be enough for you to get by. Since the Google Assistant is in the cloud, all you really need is a fast data connection and she is ready!
By plugging in the included headset which acts as the antenna, this phone allows you to access radio. As this is a simple FM tuner, it doesn’t display radio station names, only the frequencies. I do find it hard as I can never remember my favourite radio station frequencies! The sound quality is acceptable.
As mentioned earlier, the app store has limited games, but it comes pre-loaded with the ‘classic’ Snake game. It is not so classic as they have modernised it with colours and challenging levels. This is not what I used to play and I do feel like they’ve spoilt a classic, unfortunately. The store has a range of games available for download, like Puzzle Pets Memory, 2048, Gems, Real Football Runner and Whackamole etc. Currently, there is only one social media app which is Twitter and there is also a weather app too. As the phone comes with such a small internal storage, it is best to install the micro-SD before you try to download all the apps!
This Nokia 8110 comes with the basic apps like calendar, alarm, calculator, note, recorder and unit converter. It also comes with email, YouTube and music player. Watching videos on YouTube is pretty straightforward and depends on your data connection. You can download MP3 music files to listen to music, which is something I have not explored.
Overall it is an easy-to-use budget phone which is great for younger children or older folks wanting a phone with physical buttons. It is available to buy now in good retailers like AO.
Disclosure: We received the sample for the purposes of writing this review, however, all thoughts and opinions remain our own.