Vertu is back with its first ever Android phone, the Ti. As the name implies, it features a titanium case and it is handmade in England. Sadly, this is where the good news ends.
It features a snappy Qualcomm S4 processor, but the rest of the spec is anything but impressive. It has a 3.7-inch sapphire crystal WVGA screen and runs Android 4.0, which wouldn’t be too bad if this was 2011, but it’s not.
As far as the design goes, it appears to be aimed at those less fortunate among us, i.e. people who are not blessed with the gift of sight. Apparently taking its design cue from the Decepticons, It looks ridiculously tacky and pretentious – but then again, the same could be said for the market the Ti caters to.
The Vertu Ti also lacks 4G, which is rather puzzling, as the S4 is available in 4G flavour. This means that somebody actually made a conscious decision to drop LTE support.
Brilliantly named Vertu designer Hutch Hutchinson told the BBC that the company is simply not interested in being a tech pioneer.
“Vertu will never be at the bleeding edge of technology,” he said. “It has to be about relevant technology and craftsmanship – it’s not a disposable product.”
There is a problem with this approach. Imagine walking into a Rolls Royce or Bentley dealership and being told the cars on display don’t have air conditioning, ABS or satnav, because they are not supposed to be at the bleeding edge of technology.
One feature that makes Vertu phones stand out from the rest of the crowd is the unique concierge button that connects the caller with a global team that can provide localised advice and help with events and restaurant bookings. For the rest of us – there’s Google.