Nokia Unveils 'Tin Can and String' Network
Taking a cue from the success of Motorola's "2-Way", a "walkie-talkie for the 21st century", competitor Nokia has announced its immediate release of a hip throwback to childhood: "Tin Can and String". Nokia hopes to move the network outside its test area of Waucoma, Iowa, to the rest of the nation by the end of the year.
Though that goal may seem ambitious given the product's youth, Nokia spokesman Ulrich Thornton seemed confident the company could meet the date, especially given the device's "impressive functions".
"This new form of communication allows you to communicate with anyone, any time," Thornton boasted in press conference on Friday. "Provided they live next door to you, and never, ever leave their bedroom."
Thornton also said that the company is receiving "incredible feedback" for the product.
"So far, we've seen a lot of positive responses, especially from the 5-12 year old demographic," he said. "That group has been particularly hard to reach, especially since many of them have little to no grasp on the art of communication."
The Tin Can and String model is unique compared to "every other communication device on the market", continued Thornton.
"Each receiver is made from a particularly durable Columbian coffee can spray-painted in your choice of blue, red, green, or silver. The label has been removed for the user's convenience," he said. "The string that connects each receiver is made from waterproof twine, and comes in lengths ranging from 5 feet to 10 yards."
Nokia's Tin Can and String offers many features not available with other products, including the "inability to hear clearly", and relative stability of receiver location. Like the 2 Way, Tin Can and String offers the desirable feature of only being able to talk to one person, so you never make the mistake of confusing the identity of the caller.
"With many cell phones these days, almost anyone can call you, making answering the phone something only suited for private eyes and high-class detectives," Thornton explained. "When you answer the Tin Can and String, you can be confident that it's only your best friend on the other end, unless girls with cooties somehow infiltrated the treehouse where the other receiver is housed."
A typical plan offers free weekend and night minutes, with a flat rate during the weekdays, starting at $28 per line, per month.
"We here at Nokia feel that this new form of communication has something to offer everyone, from people who like the sound of their voice echoing, to people who want to talk to their best friend when it's past their eight-o'clock bedtime and Mom says 'Lights out!'," finished Thornton. "It's time to usher in a new age of communication - an age of string, an age of tin cans, an age of interaction from people all over the globe."
Judging from initial test market reaction, this "new age" may indeed be just around the corner.
"Jerry Contrell is a stupid, dumb face," Richie Harding, a local fourth-grader, told us. "And now I can tell my friend Mikey that every day over the Tin Can."
"It's so much harder to hear than the regular phone!" shouted third-grader Stephanie Barke with glee.
"Mine still smells like coffee," complained a friend of Barke's. Nokia discourages smelling the cans.
If the Tin Can and String network is as successful as Nokia anticipates, the company plans to introduce a new form of global communication, "Yelling Really Loudly".