Nokia’s new phone is like a 3310 with earbuds built into the back – and I love it

Nokia 5710 Xpress Audio with earbuds pictured on the screen
(Image credit: Future)

At TechRadar, we pride ourselves on comparing, critiquing and testing some of the best small smartphones in the world – 5G mini-beasts with ever impressive snapper lenses, video resolutions, audio chops and ecosystem enhancements to make our collective lives that little bit easier (and hopefully more sociable) with every new iteration. 

And this phone is nothing like those. 

To some, the Nokia 5710 XpressAudio is little more than a novelty burner with free true wireless earbuds squirrelled into the back. But through slightly older eyes (read: mine) it's a beautiful and inexpensive joy, serving up not only a slice of pure nostalgia with added 4G, but also a lesson in how far we've come in two decades. 

Remember what getting your phone up and running used to be like, back in the day? Even if you weren't alive in 2000, you get that experience here. 

Nokia 5710 back with earbuds in their slot

Having the case built into the phone means one less thing to lose, right?  (Image credit: Future)

I relished the chance to take a fresh 1,450mAh battery from its little plastic wallet, whip the back off my new device, line up the three battery contacts, slide it into the handset, squeeze the whole thing back together again with a wish and a prayer, turn the handset back around and fire up the power button like it's 1999. It's like riding a bike… 

But now, there's new stuff to do! With the 5710 XpressAudio, you also get to slot the bundled, color-matched earbuds into the back of the phone to power them up (there's a sliding door which oddly, covers the camera lens when open) then follow on-screen prompts to pair them to the 5710 and lo – you can listen to MP3s! Or, do as I did and head straight over to the FM radio tab in the menu and listen to your chosen station's pick. 

It's an oddly futuristic retro experience – original "wireless" meets new-school wireless connectivity, but in a device whose most recent relative is the XpressMusic line of Nokia mobiles that was discontinued in 2010.

In truth, the Nokia 5710 XpressAudio feels older, despite its 4G capability. In my hand, it harks back to the Nokia 5310 launched in 2007, or even my beloved 3210, when playing a "hidden" game or composing my own ringtone was to enter a cutting-edge, expert-only realm.

Opinion: I yearn for weeks-long battery life

Nokia 5710 XpressAudio with battery pack open, at the back

Remember 1999, when you had to fit the battery in your phone?  (Image credit: Future)

Yes, there's Snake Xenia onboard (still just as addictive) and yes, the earbuds fit OK – although they are basic affairs and if you're after something that sounds good and doesn't need to come with its own phone, head to our best budget wireless earbuds roundup. 

But the real reason I think people will love this dual-sim Nokia has nothing to do with the bundled earbuds, fun though they are. 

Its features are humble, and in an era of wildly expensive flagship foldable smartphones, the Nokia 5710 XpressAudio's 48MB of RAM and 128MB of internal storage (that can be extended by up to 32GB with a MicroSD card, where the little SIM slots are) presents a reassuring proposition with known, wallet-friendly boundaries – there's a cost of living crisis on, people. 

The phone comes with a 2.4-inch QVGA display and a 0.3 MP rear camera with an LED flash module, which is very little to write home about. It is powered by a Unisoc T107 processor and comes with the Nokia’s S30+ operating system

But here's the thing: it's 138.9 mm long, 47.7 mm thick and 16.2 mm thick and the display is nice and big. It weighs 129.1g and there's two big volume buttons on the left side, as you look at the screen – but you can, of course, lock those. 

Nokia 5710 XpressAudio with Snake Xenia playing, on beige background

Snake Xenia, 2022 style.  (Image credit: Future)

For me, the big draw is this: Nokia claims the 5710 can "last weeks on standby". Now, this truly is Nokia of old! Imagine a phone that you could rely on for days… and days. My iPhone is all out by 5pm, and that's on a good day! I crave this kind of stamina. 

Perhaps, in these uncertain times, I'm yearning for a little piece of the past but with added 4G and earbuds – I still love my 'dumb' 2006 iPod Classic because it does fewer things than any smartphone, after all. I believe the desire for a handset that just does its dedicated job of communication well enough and little else, for a low-end fee, is growing. 

The Nokia 5710 XpressAudio will cost just $76 / £75 (around AU$129) and is already available at Nokia, but it will hit other retail outlets and online platforms on September 19. 

Will it become one of the best Nokia phones of 2022? It feels unlikely. But that doesn't mean there's no place for it. Quite the opposite in fact – and I'll beat anyone who says otherwise at Snake Xenia… 

Becky Scarrott
Audio Editor

Becky became Audio Editor at TechRadar in 2024, but joined the team in 2022 as Senior Staff Writer, focusing on all things hi-fi. Before this, she spent three years at What Hi-Fi? testing and reviewing everything from wallet-friendly wireless earbuds to huge high-end sound systems. Prior to gaining her MA in Journalism in 2018, Becky freelanced as an arts critic alongside a 22-year career as a professional dancer and aerialist – any love of dance starts with a love of music. Becky has previously contributed to Stuff, FourFourTwo and The Stage. When not writing, she can still be found throwing shapes in a dance studio, these days with varying degrees of success.