How much would you be willing to pay to make fully encrypted phone calls?

3 min read

How much is your privacy worth to you? If you’re part of a big corporate that deals with high level security or a government official, probably quite a lot. In this age where anything can hacked and leaked, its probably even more valuable. Even Barack Obama gave up his smart phone while he was president of the US to prevent it from being hacked and any vital calls or messages getting leaked out to their enemies.

So, it should come as no surprise that a phone company is finally looking to tackle that problem with the ability to make completely encrypted phone calls. Luxury phone maker Vertu has made an Android phone that can do just that, called Constellation. However, Vertu is to phones what Lamborghini is to cars – for the ridiculously rich. The phone is made from anodized aluminium and wrapped in Italian soft leather and looks like a fashion statement and not just a phone.

The vital part of the phone that is of interest though is the way it uses tech called Silent Circle which can fully encrypt calls and messages that cannot be hacked, not even by the government. It also has full support for all 34 international bands and features dual-sim support, so all those international drug smugglers who will find a phone like this handy can also use the other line to keep up the ruse.

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However, what will really matter to everyone is the price for this kind of top security and although Vertu has yet to reveal its fully price for this device, the price of their last signature phone came in at $8140 (about R100 000), so this won’t be cheap.

So that life of complete privacy could finally be a reality for you, if you have the cash and are willing to pay that kind of money for just a cellphone. As for the rest of us, if you want to be completely secure, you’ll have to just stay offline.

The full specs of the phone are below. Nothing amazing, but fairly standard with what you would expect of a top of the range cellphone these days:

Vertu Constellation specs, as reported by CNET:

  • 5-inch display with a resolution of 2,560 by 1,440 pixels
  • 12-megapixel rear camera (with larger pixels for better low light shots, apparently)
  • Wireless charging
  • Fingerprint reader and NFC for Android Pay
  • 128GB of internal storage, expandable with microSD cards
  • Android 6.0 Marshmallow
  • USB Type-C charging
  • 3,220mAh battery

Last Updated: January 24, 2017

Craig Risi

A man of many talents, but no sense how to use them. I could be discovering the cure for aids or finding ways to achieve world peace, but I’d rather be watching movies and writing here instead.

  • justlikemo

    wow, thats a price tag, ill pay R50 if there’s an app :0

  • Admiral Chief

    I PAY FIVE DORRAR for unlimited calls

  • Hammersteyn

    They can listen to my calls, just not Friday nights between 9 and 10

    • MonsterCheddar


    • miaau

      So early, heh?

      • Hammersteyn

        I like to go to bed early sometimes

  • MonsterCheddar
  • Magoo


  • miaau

    Where is the value proposition? I fail to see why this phone should be purchased, i.e. what do the company offer. Very vague on this encryption story..

    Why can it not be run as a service on other Android devices? Why is theirs special? I imagine this is somewhat like the Balckberry thing, all internet traffic went to their servers first, compressed and stuff, then to your phone. BIS.

  • I’d probably be up for paying R500-R1000 for an app that encrypted all my phone calls… however the problem is that the person you are calling needs the same app installed else it can’t work.

    With the way the political world is going I’m becoming more and more paranoid…

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