Do you remember the good old days? When people had real values, were the streets safe at night and America was amazing? Me neither. But I remember the happy phone designs of the past.
In the old days, my dear, before every handset was just a huge screen, phones came in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Most of them were ugly and stupid, but at least they had charm.
Many of these cellular gems are in the Mobile Phone Museum. The collection of over 2,000 models has been carefully transferred to an online exhibition, with images dripping with nostalgia and detail on each device.
The website has made the TNW editorial staff long to remember. Here’s how we got our hearts broken by old handsets.
Már “Aggressively Noughties” Másson Maack
As I scrolled through the museum, I was suddenly reminded of my long-forgotten love: the Nokia 3200. Okay fine, I must admit that its buttons are completely ridiculous, but the aggressive noughties design will always have a special place in my heart.
It was the first cell phone I had and it was much cooler than all the other shit on the market because it really allowed me to express Myself. Basically, you could remove the outer case, which was made of transparent plastic, and put any kind of printed background in it.
So, of course, I was by far the coolest kid in school when I rocked a phone with hand-drawn designs (or at least my mom thought so).
Anouk “Groovy Shapes” finger
Most people remember the turn of the millennium for Y2K, or for celebrities wearing lots of denim, but for me it was when I got my first cell phone: the Pocketline Swing.
While the more popular Nokia 3310 was business – rugged but a bit dull – the Pocketline Swing had a groovy shape and came in bright colors.
Mine was turquoise and could store a maximum of three texts. My friend Ellen, who had the same phone and a girlfriend at the time, wanted a little notebook where she wrote down all his texts before deleting them forever.
Abhimanyu “Basic Beeps” Ghoshal
The Sony Ericsson J200 was my first color screen phone back in the early 2000s – and my first with POLYPHONIC RINGTONES (meaning they sounded a bit more complex than basic beeps).
I happily remember that I did everything I could to customize these features, like visiting phone repair shops to get the technicians to load ringtones on it and download 15KB wallpapers via WAP (I speak mobile internet, not Cardi B). It was super plastic-like, but it felt like a completely separate device thanks to these revolutionary features.
Ioanna “Drop and Damage”
People say you never forget your first love, and the same goes with your first phone. To me, the Nokia 3310 is without a doubt the most excellent phone I have ever had. It had everything one could ask for (at least at the time) and a breathtaking durability that I find a crucial element.
Yes, I am one of those people who is constantly losing and damaging their phones. And it goes without saying that I will never forget the hours I spent playing Snake. I still miss it a lot.
Steven “Neo” Kok
My Nokia 8110 was a hand-me-down from my dad who had moved on to cooler things (like a Palm handheld). A ridiculously business-like phone with very little appeal to me and my Limp Bizkit-era sensitivity. Until, of course, the phone appeared in … The Matrix.
It is true. In 1999, 8110 starred in the sci-fi movie as the unit that Morpheus sends Neo to guide him out of his office building while being chased by agents. Then I immediately loved it and apparently pretended I had always done it.
Andrea “Cool Slidey” Hak
When everyone bought their first iPhone, I bought the LG KS360.
Perks: it had a cool slidey keyboard and you could drop it about a billion times (which I did) and it would not break.
Cons: no, I owned another smartphone, so I was not quite aware that you might need a phone for more than just calling and texting.
Thomas “2 Sharp” Macaulay
I was fascinated by the original Motorola Razr. Spins the sharp edges around my fingers I felt like such a badman as I walked down the street – until someone in a hoodie approached and I had to run for safety.
It was London back then and it’s much the same today. Only now that I’ve “upgraded” to a Samsung S20, I no longer worry about anyone robbing my phone.
Yes, I could have bought another Razr when Motorola revived the brand, but the nostalgia is never as good as it used to be.
These are the phones we loved and lost, but what about yours? You can tell us that through the usual channels – but if anyone mentions my beloved Razr, we’ll have to throw up our hands.