A surprising little gem from Nokia.
I remember when mobile phones used to be simple little devices that we would just use to make phone calls and send the occasional text message. Now our phones talk to us, give us directions, keep track of our appointments, and feed us a constant stream of information. After all, who wants a phone that does anything less? Well, Nokia seems to think that there’s a market for people who want simpler, affordable phones that do a bit more than just phone calls. While the company has been going on about its new Lumia range, it’s found time to also launch the Asha range of smartphones, with the Asha 311 being the latest.
Build quality & design
The Nokia Asha 311 at first glance looks almost enticing, but after the initial curiosity wears off, you’ll find that it’s a pretty ordinary looking phone, build mostly of very glossy plastic. It does however come in a few different colors, mine being in the ‘Rose Red’ option. Despite being built of plastic, the phone has a bit of weight to it and certainly feels like it could take a few knocks – at least most of my Nokia phones have gone through various stages of abuse and lived to tell the tale, long before screen-protectors and phone cases came about.
The front of the phone has just two buttons, which you’ll use for placing or disconnecting a call. The button to disconnect calls also functions as a ‘back’ button when you’re navigating through the phone, which is quite nifty. On the right side of the phone you’ll find a lock button and volume rocker, while at the top you have a headphone jack, micro-USB port, and a small socket for a power connector. Nokia have kept the number of buttons down to a minimum, and given the small size of this phone, that’s worked out in their favor.
Nokia have designed the Asha 311 to be an affordable handset, and as such it won’t be packing a lot of hardware under the hood. The specs are enough to run the phone’s Series 40 OS, but you’ll see some apps lag slightly when using them.