The most in-demand pieces of retro tech set to make a comeback in 2024

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At musicMagpie, we have delved into the world of retro tech to discover the devices that have seen the biggest increase in demand over the last 12 months. The Y2K trend has taken the fashion world by storm, and has now entered the tech industry.

By using Google Search Trends data, we’ve found that digital cameras have skyrocketed as the device making the biggest comeback in 2024. Digital cameras are back, with celebrity sisters Bella and Gigi Hadid both regularly posting 00s style pictures, and TikTok star Charli D’Amelio is known to love the vintage devices too. After becoming a must-have accessory on nights out and holidays throughout the 2000s, the popularity of smartphones meant sales declined by the end of the 2010s.

The trend is now spreading quickly once again. On TikTok, searches for ‘Nikon Coolpix’ have increased 713% over the last 12 months. However, eBay searches for Nikon Coolpix have also skyrocketed 700% in the last year, showing that perhaps their increasing popularity translates to buying intent.

Flip Phones, MP3 Players And Nintendo DS' Are Back With a Bang

Demand for the Nikon Coolpix, a popular digital camera first released in 2005, has soared by 8,507% over the last 12 months. New interest in the Nikon Coolpix has also caused TikTok searches to jump 713% and searches on eBay to increase 700%. Videos with the hashtag #nikoncoolpix have been viewed 47 million times on TikTok.

As part of what could be a retro tech revival, flip phones have also experienced a surge in demand. TikTok searches for the Motorola Razr phone have increased 180% in 12 months and videos with this hashtag have 46 million views, in line with a jump in eBay searches (148%) and Google searches (127%). Searches for Samsung flip phones have also increased across all three platforms - TikTok (57%), eBay (63%), and Google (94%) over the past year.

The trend can be spotted in MP3 players too - TikTok searches for Apple’s iPod Nano are up by 49%, while eBay searches have also jumped 42% in 12 months. The traditional rival of the iPod, the Sony Walkman, has seen searches increase even more in the past year - 60% on TikTok and 79% on Ebay.

The handheld gaming console the Nintendo DS has also seen an increase in searches of 33% on TikTok and 19% on eBay.

The Pink Nikon Coolpix Is Officially The Most In-Demand Piece Of Retro Tech

The colour pink is leading the retro-tech revival - becoming the most popular trending colour for two of the five models in terms of searches.

The Nikon Coolpix saw TikTok searches for the colour pink rise by 488% and eBay searches shoot up 525%. Orange proved to be the second most popular colour - searches went up 200% on TikTok. The Samsung flip phone saw the most searches for pink out of any colour - Google searches shot up by 175%.

The Sony Walkman’s most popular trending colourway is blue, with a search increase of 27% on TikTok, while the Motorola Razr’s trending colourway is silver (100% search increase on eBay and 40% on TikTok). The iPod Nano’s trending colourway is black - an 89% search increase on TikTok and a 100% search increase on eBay.

Search Increases For Retro Tech Inspire Modern ‘Foldable Phone’ Design Trend

Searches related to ‘modern flip phones’ increased by 23,073% in the last year, and this demand may have inspired the modern-day foldable phones trend. The hashtag #modernflipphone has over 191 million views on TikTok and companies are looking to meet this new demand.

Google, Samsung, Motorola, Nokia and Oppo have all fused modern smartphone technology with retro designs. Samsung has tapped into the ‘folding’ phone concept, with their high-powered Galaxy Z Fold 5 retailing at £1,424 and offering all the capabilities expected of a smartphone.

Google is also one of the main players in the foldable phone market - its Pixel Fold retails at the same price as Samsung’s, making both phones two of the most expensive on the market. Google searches for ‘Google Pixel Fold’ have increased by 22% in the last month.

After Flip Phones And Cameras, Could Typewriters Be Next To Have a Resurgence?

Google searches related to ‘typewriter keyboard for iPad’ have soared by 163% over the last 12 months, signalling that more and more people are looking for a retro tech set-up when working from home.

There is a particular increase in searches for ‘pink typewriter keyboards’ - the term is up 223% in the last year. Typewriter keyboards vary in price - some of the cheapest sit at around £30, while higher-end models such as the Qwerkywriter sell for £420.

Modern connectivity and convenience are still essential, but consumers also seem to be looking towards vintage style and a device that helps with productivity - a typewriter’s sole focus is to write copy.

With more and more devices making a comeback in 2024, the growing trend of retro tech doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. Interestingly, we are also seeing modern devices influenced by older ones in the form of foldable phones and typewriter keyboards, and it could lead to other gadgets receiving a vintage design makeover.

Trends work in cycles, which means that one day 2024’s tech will be viewed as ‘retro’ too - so keeping your devices in good condition could pay off in the future when demand for today’s tech inevitably soars.


musicMagpie used Keyword Tool to analyse the global year-on-year search trend increases across Google, TikTok and eBay.