THE Nokia, which led the cell phone market for many years, started its activities in another branch. Making tires, boots and cables, however, it was with portable telephones that this Finnish giant, founded in 1865, immortalized its brand.
Today we are going to remember the story of an iconic Nokia cell phone, the best-selling model of all time. The legendary Nokia 1100.
Nokia, the overwhelming
It took a long time for Nokia to change the course of its business and move into producing phones. However, the involvement with telecommunications had been active since the 1960s, when the company started producing radio broadcasts.
The company’s first portable phone arrived in 1981, time when mobile phone networks were still first generation (1G). The first model, called Mobira Senatorit was one of those phones designed for use in the car (some people also used it on the boat). The “little monster” weighed 9.8 kg.
However, the first Nokia model with that cell phone look that we are used to associating appeared only in 1987: Mobira Citymanreleased 4 years after the arrival of what is considered the first truly mobile phone, the Motorola DynaTac 8000X.
The Mobira Cityman is considered to be the first “compact” phone ever produced (183mm x 43mm x 79mm).
A photo involving the Cityman became very famous. The last president of the Soviet Union, Mikhail Gorbachev, made a call from Helsinki to Moscow using this Nokia device.
The 90s were decisive for mobile telephony. During this period, competition was narrowing. While Motorola and Nokia gained strength, NEC, Toshiba, Mitsubishi and Oki lagged behind.
Out of curiosity, it was in the 90s that Nokia launched its first device with its unforgettable ringtone. The first model with this touch was the Nokia 2110, from 1994.
With the end of the decade, the Nokia gained even more traction and achieved the great feat of taking the lead from Motorola.
Definitely the person responsible for this had a name: Nokia 3210, released in 1999. sabsolute success, more than 160 million units were sold.
In 1999 Nokia placed its name at the top of the brands that sold the most cell phones. It only left in 2012. So far, Nokia remains the company that has led the cell phone segment for the longest time.
Between the late 90’s and mid-2000’s Nokia had several successes that follow still in the list of the best selling models in history. One of them is the Nokia 1100.
Launched on August 23, 2003, the model reached, in a period of approximately 5 years, the mark of 250 million units sold.
Brand which places it in the first position among the best-selling cell phones of all time, as it was the first model to reach this number of units sold.
Definitely, if Nokia had managed to make just one cell phone reach such expressive numbers, it would already be emblematic, but the feat was repeated 2 years later, with the Nokia 1110.
According to Carl-Gustav Linden, in the book Kingdom of Nokia: How a Nation Served the Needs of One Company, in the 5-year period since the launch, the time it took for the Nokia 1100 to reach 250 million units sold, the iPod managed to sell 174 million units; PS2 sold 125 million units; Motorola RAZR recorded 50 million units sold and the Nintendo Wii 45 million.
The numbers place the Nokia 1100 as the most successful electronics in such a short period of time.
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The highly competitive price (US$100) contributed to the overall success.
Several elements that are already dated, when we talk about the most sought-after cell phones, were the ingredients that transformed the Nokia 1100 in a classic:
- polyphonic ringtones;
- Flashlight on top of the device (the device even received the nickname “lanterninha” in Brazil);
- Colored front and back cover, which could be exchanged;
- The famous games Snake II and Space Impact;
- Silicone keyboard.
As the Mobile Phone Museum highlights, the Nokia 1100 was aimed at growing markets such as India, but the device had global appeal. Nokia 1100 was discontinued in September 2009.
In a pre-iPhone and Galaxy S era, Nokia managed to bring a style that many revered as “cool” among cell phones, associated with durability and competitive price. Besides, of course, keeping the Nokia 1100 and so many other models in the pantheon of great successes in the history of mobile telephony.