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Guide for the filthy rich

18
Les Uniques

In this category, we have the phones made by companies devoted to luxury handset production. By default, their price is similar to the price tag of an exotic vehicle or a small condo, and in some cases, it could be a six figure . If you are even able to spot any of these phones in a store, they will most likely lack a price label.

Vertu:

This is the most popular brand in this class and is a division of Nokia, using its interface (Series 40) as well. Its popularity, unusual for such an expensive brand, has made it a knock off target, but luckily, the fake copies (mainly originating in China)are quite easy to tell apart.

The Vertu phones are handcrafted in „the leafy English countryside”. So far, the following collections have been presented:

  • Signature
  • Signature Diamonds
  • Constellation
  • Monogram Constellation
  • Ascent
  • Ascent Ti
  • Limited: Racetrack Legends
  • Limited: Ferrari 1947
  • Special: Summer Colours

The overall design of the brand has been inspired by exotic sport cars. This becomes apparent when you take a look at the production materials; if no precious metals or gems are integrated, high quality, modern alloys are used.


By purchasing one of these jewels, you get a unique 24/7 concierge service. All you need to do, is press a single button! Unfortunately, we didn’t get a chance to ask “Where in Shanghai can we have the best Sichuan Duck?” or „What’s the best hotel on the North Pole?” As an additional service, you can trust Vertu to store all your personal info. The option Vertu Fortress lets you wirelessly send all your priceless contacts and calendar events to a server, secured in an ex-military bunker in Kent, England.

Until last year, all phones of the manufacturer had no high-tech elements built-in. In contrast, the last Vertu model, Ascent Ti, is definitely not just another pretty face. It is quad-band, with a 3-megapixel camera, including flash and autofocus, Bluetooth support and 4GB internal memory. The people who can afford to buy this phone are usually the subject of the paparazzi themselves, as opposed to the ones taking the pictures, but that’s a different story.The price of that piece of art is about $ 7,000.

Mobiado:

The mobile division of Bonac Innovation Corp. uses the Nokia (Series 40) interface as well. The application of high-tech alloys (employed in the aircraft industry). The collections currently announced are as follows:

  • Stealth
  • Luminoso
  • Professional
  • Professional Executive Model with Limited Edition

The design is definitely inspired by military machines. That is the reason for the clean and “Spartan” appearance, which would not be considered luxurious by the mass consumer. The carrying case included in the set, is made out of carbon, which, thanks to its great strength and lightweight, is becoming more and more popular.

Luminoso is the model with the most capabilities; it is tri-band (900/1800/1900 MHz), with 3G support (WCDMA 2100), 2-megapixel camera, Bluetooth, mircoSD slot (up to 2GB). If we had to compare its specs with all other regular phones, the Luminoso would fall in the middle class. The illuminated sapphire buttons, in combination with the high-tech materials, mentioned above, are the ones making the handset unique and bumping the price up to $ 2,200. The Stealth, inspired by the legendary tactical bomber F-117, is also a modified version of the Luminoso.


If you are a war vet, with romantic memories from your service or a military wannabe, the Mobiado phones are just for you.

(Currently, Mobiado mobile phones are not available for sale to the United States of America.)

Gresso:

In nature, no two trees are identical. In order to offer unique phones only, the Russian company Gresso, counts on imported African Blackwood. The bodies of their devices are made of the exotic material and if what the company says is true, you have the unique chance of purchasing a product with a 200-year history. All Gresso handsets are slim, but still are Windows Mobile 6.0 Standard based, i.e., they are smartphones. Aside from being extremely expensive fashion accessories, these devices can help you organize your day/office.

That’s not enough? Well, then order the Royal Black Diamonds model. Each one of its 23 buttons are made of gold and decorated with a 2.53 ct. black diamond. On top of that, the phone is equipped with a 2-megapixel camera, Bluetooth, Memory card slot (up to 2GB). For the moment the Russians have not announced a fully operational U.S. version and their “wooden” jewel is only tri-band (900/1800/1900 MHz), but it's still pricey at $ 46,000.

These are the collections offered:

  • Avantgarde (Sol & Luna)
  • Avantgarde Black Diamonds (Classic & Royal)
  • Black Aura

Base price is about $ 8,000.

Bellperre:

That is another manufacturer targeting the “filthy rich” audience and offering cell phones handcrafted from expensive materials. Similar to Gresso, the company has decided that their products should run on Windows Mobile, but here we have the older, 5.0 version, which is a bit disappointing. The design of the various models includes a wide range of differently colored, exotic skins, including shark and crocodile, to choose from. The overall vision of the Bellperre phones is extremely simple and clean, resembling a rectangular leather kit-bag, but is customizable, upon customer's request.

So far, there is only one model announced and it has many variants, depending on the choice of materials . The phone has a 1.3-megapixel camera, stereo Bluetooth and a miniUSB jack for charging and connecting to a PC. Unfortunately, the device is tri-band and it has limited U.S. coverage.

Since the phone is expected to hit the European market in June 2008, there is no additional detailed information at present.



GoldVish:

What happens if you combine Swiss quality, 100ct. diamonds, and high-tech technology? You get Le Million. This is a jewel that is priced at
$ 1,200,000, and is currently considered the most expensive phone ever created. Only three units were made and one of them has already been purchased by a Russian millionaire. The phone is a creation of the Geneva based company GoldVish, which specializes in the production of extremely luxurious mobile devices. “The best possible” materials (18ct. gold, VVS1 diamonds etc.) are used by “skilled artisans” to handcraft Le Million.

If you can think of a better way to spend a million dollars (like buying a family home on Hawaii for example), but still would like to own one of GoldVish’s masterpieces, the Illusion collection is a solution for you. The devices of the line include phones equipped with 2-megapixel camera, Bluetooth, microSD slot (up to 2 GB) and a unique Vivaldi ringtone played by Domenico Nordio, exclusively for GoldVish. Twelve different color variants are offered, each one with a romantic name such as Creamy Crème, Blue Heaven, Lollypop Pink, Red Red Wine and our favorite Roses are Red. The base price is a little over $ 20,000, but it can increase considerably, depending on the customer’s choice of materials (additional rubies, higher quality gold or diamonds). In contrast to all previously mentioned phones, every GoldVish model is a global phone.



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