Friday, October 2, 2009

Premium mobile maker Vertu launches first clamshell phone

Vertu isn’t a name that the average Joe carries around on his cell phone. In fact, it isn’t a name that some of the richer Joes carry around. The mobile phone is the premium of premium phones; the Rolls Royce of the handset industry. And for the first time in its illustrious history, the company has rolled out a flip-phone: the Constellation Ayxta.

It’s a bit surprising that Vertu has taken so long to come out with a clamshell phone, especially given the style points such handsets have. But it looks like the company has taken its time to come out with a model that’s so perfect, it’s hard not to be amazed.

As with all Vertu models, the Constellation Ayxta comes with a stainless steel chassis with aluminium detailing, as well as leather and ceramic accents. The trademark crystal sapphire screen is intact, with a 1.3-inch external display (128x160 pixels) and a 2.4-inch internal display (320x480 pixels).

The new device comes with a 3-megapixel camera with LED Flash, a microSD slot for cards up to 8GB, 3G connectivity and GPS.

But the real sellers are the two Vertu services it comes with. As with all its phones, the Constellation Ayxta avails the user of the Vertu Concierge – a button to contact a 24-hour concierge service, which connects the user to a "lifestyle manager" who can book plane tickets, order gifts or sort out a plumber at short notice.

The second service is the newly-introduced Vertu City Brief. When a customer arrives in a new country, the handset uses the GPS to automatically alter the clock to the local timezone and inform the user of the best new restaurants, plays, concerts and events happening in that city that week. Businessmen will also be informed of the local business etiquette.

Of course, as usual, all this comes at a hefty price. To be able to afford the Vertu Constellation Ayxta, you better have a credit card with no limits: this one will set you back by an incredible 4,900 euros, which comes to roughly Rs. 3.45 lakhs!


Monday, September 28, 2009

Winning Designs in China: Standing Out to Fit In

The Chinese consumer is becoming increasingly modern and internationalized. However, while "egos" and ambitions are huge, the "new generation" is not becoming "individualistic" in the Western sense -- i.e., the peoples never define themselves independent of society. The middle class, those who can afford non-essential items, is torn between two impulses. The first is projection of status which leads to a desire to be noticed (in public contexts), aggressive self-expression and experimentation with new modes of style and design. The second, in vivid contrast to the projection, is protection, a fear of sticking out too obviously or challenging existing hierarchies and social restrictions. The Chinese saying -- "the leading goose gets shot down" -- is as true today as it was yesterday. People want to "advance," be acknowledged by society as "special" but they can not afford to be too ahead of the crowd. Western-style individualism is like Eve's apple -- succulent, enticing, desired. Biting into it, however, risks banishment to the Land of Outcasts. 

Across a broad swathe of categories, the conflict between standing out and fitting in manifests itself in design and product preference. As a result, there are a few basic rules that should be followed. But we must recognize two caveats. First, willingness to accept less conservative expression of identity is greater: a) within younger age groups who are more accepting of "Western" style (e.g., tattoos, piercing, "business casual") than older cohorts and b) across primary cities (Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou and Shenzhen) than second, third and forth-tier cities. Second, it is possible to "push the curve," to encourage Chinese to experiment with more audacious new fashion. However, this must be done gingerly, incrementally, without crossing an invisible line of overt "rebellion." Brashly grabbing attention -- a la American Idol's Adam Lambert -- is a no-no, irrespective of age, education or economic background.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Vertu Constellation F spotted

Vertu is the brand associated with the style icons, and the ones with a huge pocket as well. Well, it seems that the luxury phone manufacturer is planning to unveil an elegant handset to its Constellation series. A few hazy images of the premium handset were spotted by, reports Engadget iMobile.

Reportedly, the Constellation F sports a 2.4-inch HVGA primary display. It features global GSM / EDGE and HSPA along with 8GB of storage. Apparently, this magnificent handset is the first clamshell model from Vertu. The luxury mobile phone incorporates a 3 megapixel camera with dual LED flash.

It seems that the Vertu handset is made up of stainless steel, leather and some versions of gold. The stylish handset is not only the first flip phone from Vertu, but it may be the only one in the Vertu lineup to offer GPS functionality. Probably, the exclusive phone also connects to the internet via Wi-Fi.

There is no official word on the release date or the pricing details. However, the Vertu Constellation F1 may show up in this autumn and will carry a heavy price tag of around $10,000.


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Yeah, this Vertu concept looks better than most of the ‘real’ phones out there

Apparently this phone is getting ready for a big Muay Thai match. It’s a Vertu—“vertu” is “virture” in French!—designed by one Norihiko Inoue. No, you cannot buy it, I just thought it looked neat.

If you look closely, you’ll notice that the phone is mostly air, like a building. Says the designer:

Thanks to the advances in technology mobile phones are getting smaller and thinner each year, however phones have to be a certain size for us to hold them and look at the screen properly. In my concept most of the electronic components are incorporated into the phone’s outer shell, but the size of the vertu phone remains the same size as it is now with empty space inside.

I think it’s safe to say that I’d much rather use this than a now-boring iPhone.


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Nokia starts offering VERTU mobile phone services in Japan

Japan is a tough market to crack for many non-Japanese cell phone makers, and even the world’s leading cell phone maker, Nokia, had to give up its Japan operations after having failed to gain a foothold in this country (in November last year). But they’re trying again, this time with their luxury brand Vertu.

Being a Japanese VERTU CLUB subscriber includes a number of perks. Users can call up a concierge who takes care of things like restaurant or hotel reservations 24 hours a day, for example (in either English or Japanese). Another service, dubbed Fortress, makes it possible to store data like phone numbers or addresses on servers operated in an underground bunker in the UK.

The price for this nonsense: $560 monthly, but you can make 20 hours of domestic calls for free. I can’t see Nokia going anywhere with this, especially not in this economy, but I could be wrong.


Friday, September 4, 2009

Vertu Signature Cobra Boucheron Limited Silver Edition gets cheaper

Vertu has always been the brand that is associated with the rich and famous. Surprisingly, the Vertu Signature Cobra Boucheron Limited Silver Edition is now available on Lux Replica for an unbelievable price of $700.

According to Ubergizmo, the luxury phone misses out on a diamond, a ruby and several other precious stones at strategic parts of the phone. It features a 1.8″ 262k color TFT display with 176 × 220 resolution. Reportedly, the limited edition handset does not even offer a camera.

Apparently, the dimensions of the opulent handset are 123mm x 46mm x 17mm and it weighs around 200 grams. The Vertu phone is seemingly equipped with 1MB internal memory and offers external microSD card support to up to 2GB. Supposedly, the handset presents 5 hours of talktime and up to 400 hours of standby time. It seems that the silver edition mobile phone is equipped with BL-5CV, Li-Ion, 1050 mAh battery.

The Signature Cobra Boucheron may support English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Turkish, Arabic, Vietnamese and Russian languages. Apparently, the phone supports MP3, MP4, MID audio formats and 3GP, MP4 video formats. Moreover, the magnificent device is probably inclusive of dual-bass loudspeakers, FM radio and stereo Bluetooth support.

It appears that this is the right time to grab the luxurious masterpiece.


Thursday, September 3, 2009

Vertu Club Japan Launched

Vertu Club Japan launches today w/membership at $500 month, also opens new shop in Nihonbashi Mitsukoshi dept. store [J]

Machine Translation:

It was announced that high-level cellular phone brand “Vertu” began membership program VERTU Club for the VERTU hand set buyer on September 1. This is a telephone call that becomes MVNO (Mobile Virtual Network Operator) Vertu and is offered and a communication service.

The mail address of mail domain “” domain that becomes a status symbol is obtained besides a domestic call charge and domestic packet transmission considerably can be used for 1200 minutes when becoming a member.

The “VERTU Fortress” service to which the data preserved in the VERTU hand set is backed up with a certain server during the cover trench for strong old military affairs in Britain adheres, too. Besides this, concierge service “VERTU concierge” in which original Vertu can be used for the pictograph and 24 hours and 365 days can be used.

For the VERTU concierge, it widely supports it to the entertainments of the travel, shopping, the sumo wrestling, and the opera, etc.It is said that the situation that can be supported is straightened when there is a user.

“Cannot a private jet from Haneda be prepared because there is a meeting with the customer in Shanghai next week?”, for the wife who likes jewelry on the marriage anniversary want of rent a store for several hours “Choose the favorite one”, It choose”, and “It wants you to arrange the gallery seat of the final stage by all means because it was heard that customer’s foreigner president was a favorite sumo wrestling the other day” It is assumed that it satisfies the demand.

Each service is assumed to be “Luxury communications service designed to answer needs of the well-to-do population that succeeds in the business that is the target” according to Vertu by what Vertu originally developed for a Japanese market.

The membership expense can be chosen according to two types of monthly membership (52,500 yen in the monthly sum) or the annual membership (577,500 yen in the annual sum).

Nihonbashi Mitsukoshi shop that became the first department store store in Japan on September 1 was opened to the first floor in the main building of the Nihonbashi Mitsukoshi headquarters. Via CNET Japan .