November 14, 2014
Vertu started in the late 1990s as an indulgence for Nokia’s designers. It eventually became its own division, name logo and brand identity synonymous with wealth. Led by Frank Nuovo, the group set out to explore what a phone could look and feel like if its design was free from budget constraints. What kind of phone could you design and build if money was no object?
Vertu means “object of excellence” in latin and being a luxury mobile-phone brand presents some unique challenges for Vertu. Whereas the luxury industry moves at a very slow and considered pace, the exact opposite is true of smartphone manufacturing. By the time you’re fully up to date with both components and software, there’s already a new model coming out. As a luxury company, Vertu doesn’t plan to ever actively compete in this race, but it recognizes the need to match the basic building blocks of its contemporary competition.
While other phones are mass-produce in their millions, a Vertu is hand built by craftsmen one at a time. There are no conveyor belts at Vertu. One worker is responsible for building each phone from start to finish, and each handset is engraved with his or her signature upon completion. That personal touch is appreciated by customers, who will occasionally request a particular person to build their next phone. Training to become a Vertu technician can take anywhere from three months to a year, depending on the level of expertise. Vertu has only one single manufacturing facility located on the outskirts of London. The entire team, engineers, assemblers and designers work under the same roof.
With their exclusive personalization, they can ensure that the Vertu is a true reflection of your individuality. You can choose from your own selection of colors, leathers and design and add your initials. You can even personalize your Aster.
While each Vertu is a pleasure to hold and use, it is far more than a phone, giving you access to extraordinary services as well. It has
- A Concierge service that provides personalized assistance for almost anything you desire, day or night, no matter where you are
- Worldwide assistance
- Priority bookings
- Finding perfect gift
- ‘Money-can’t-buy’ experiences
- VIP packages to major international sporting events such as UEFA Champions League, Formula 1, The Ashes Cricket, Royal Ascot, Wimbledon and more
- Exclusive access to unique exhibitions at high-profile exhibitions, red carpet events and performances
- Access to private members’ clubs
- Invitations to exclusive preview events, fashion shows, after parties, boutique happenings and personal shopping and exclusive styling services
- Provided with a dedicated lifestyle manager (Vertu Dedicated Concierge) or team of experts (Vertu Classic Concierge) who will tailor every aspect of your request to suit your preferences
Vertu’s basic phones current range is from $6,658 to $23,100. Its platform of choice is Android and the phone has a state-of-the-art encrypted communication service as well as global WiFi connectivity. They even partnered with Ferrari and Bentley to create customized luxury car phones.
The more personalized phones range from as high as $88,000 for a Vertu Ruby customized phones with Ruby bearings, the finest platinum material and small diamonds, 8K diamond key pads and casing made of ceramic. It has so far been sold to only 200 people.
The Vertu Signature Cobra made my Boucheron, a famous french jeweler, featured a round diamond, 2 karat pear cut diamond, 2 emeralds, and 439 rubies studded to the Cobra signature. Covered with 21k diamond and rubies, the phone is priced at a whopping $310,000.