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WIRED Staffers' Fondest Memories of Our Old Nokia Phones


Microsoft has sent Nokia back across the pond, closer to its birth place, to lend its stature to international phones, probably of the lower-end variety. But don't cry, Nokia is just spending its golden years closer to family and familiar languages. You can still visit Nokia when you travel abroad.

But if you're anything like us, you could also just go out to your garage, find a box of stuff from the late 90s or early aughts that you never threw away, and visit your old pal right now. Remember the glorious era that started in 1996 with the first candybar phone with buttons and Snake? When it seemed like all your friends had the same exact phone—though yours was clearly cooler becuase it had the "cow print" faceplate? Sure, not everyone had a cell phone, and some who did were rebels with Motorola flips that sported superlong antennas, but Nokia, for a moment in time, was everywhere.

Let's travel back to those simpler days for a moment. Here are some of our editors' favorite Nokia-related memories.

Summer Nights

When I was 16, I got my second mobile phone, a Nokia 5190. (My first was a Motorola Microtac). Being a budding designer, I loved the mid-century style and ability to change the covers.

I was living in Lone Wolf, Oklahoma, and I was basically cut off socially from the rest of the world. I had become long-distance friends with a handful of kids I had met at summer camps around the state, and the best way to stay in touch was with an unlimited long-distance mobile plan.

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