Test: Nokian 8210 4G – simplicity and frustration

If you are somewhere in the younger middle age and above, you probably get a little nostalgic when you see a plastic mobile phone with buttons that say “Nokia” on them. At least that’s how I feel when I unbox the little Nokia 8210 4G which has borrowed its name from that little, little phone that was among the smallest that could be brought up without the buttons becoming unpressable. And it’s probably nostalgic and those who need some kind of digital detox who are the target audience for this phone. Or if you might need a cheaper second phone that you don’t have to worry about as much and that doesn’t have to have all the smart features.

However, the fact that it says “Nokia” on the phone is mostly a logo. Behind the phone is HMD Global, which has bought up Nokia’s phone manufacturing and the right to use the brand. If it were to say “HMD Global” instead of “Nokia”, a large part of the nostalgia points would disappear, if not all. It’s bigger than its older namesake (thank goodness), and has a bigger screen and somehow feels flatter. The screen is 2.8 inches and has a resolution of 240 x 320 pixels, and thus has a “slightly” lower resolution than what we are used to nowadays. 8210 4G is light, but also very plastic. It feels cheap, but the buttons are about as I remember them.


Some of the modernities and novelties that appear in the 8210 4G include the fact that it supports 4G (although it may not be a surfing-friendly phone). It also has bluetooth and a camera with 0.3 megapixels, the latter may not be considered a modernity anyway.

The question is also how useful the bluetooth connection is. Pairing the phone with a pair of headphones isn’t a huge problem, but I can’t for the life of me get the phone to play audio through them, even though I’m told the audio is now going to the paired device when I plug in the headphones. I try several different pairs of headphones and in-ears and redo the bluetooth connection an inordinate number of times, but the sound continues to crackle out of the phone’s speakers. The frustration is even greater when the radio app kindly informs me that the sound experience can be improved if I plug in a pair of headphones, when I’m sitting with the headphones on and they’re connected to the phone.

Also note that I wrote that I had no major problems connecting the headphones to the phone. But it was not entirely obvious how to do with half-hidden menu options and other mess. The easiest is probably to use the 3.5mm input and a pair of decent headphones with a cord.

If you want to listen to something other than the radio, you have to load mp3 files into the phone via the micro-USB socket. The phone’s internal memory fills up quite quickly, but you have the option of inserting a microSD with up to 32GB of memory.


It is quite possible to fiddle around on the phone to get to the various functions. To speed things up a bit you can add shortcuts to the top two buttons on the keypad, but to my dismay you can’t add Snake as a shortcut, instead you can select things like music, radio, messages, camera, photos, calendar, alarms and so on.

No app store

There are no opportunities to load new apps into the phone, so you have to make do with the entertainment and tools that are available. Facebook is available as an alternative and if you want to surf, the browser Opera mini applies. The experience of trying to surf on a Nokia 8210 4G isn’t too frustrating so I manage to read a bit of news before I get fed up and give up because the interface is just too slow and clunky.

However, there are a couple of games where Snake and Tetris are perhaps the crown jewels, if you can put it that way.

For whom and why

Yes, the Nokia 8210 4G is perhaps not something you buy as the only phone unless you are in urgent need of a digital detox or really don’t want to get more out of your phone than calling and texting. And even texting, then using T9 to write words, can be at least as frustrating as it was in 2001. It can also be a fun thing, a little nostalgia trip or just a gaming platform for Snake and Tetris. If it’s worth it for around 900 kroner, well, it probably depends on how strong emotions it evokes in you.

Source: Mobil by www.mobil.se.

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