$1.3 million handset: the world's priciest phone

. Thursday, September 27, 2007
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Guinness World Records certifies this GoldVish phone as the most expensive in the world--1 million euros, or about $1.3 million. The odd-shaped device is made out of 18-carat white gold and features 1,800 diamonds totaling 120 carats. A Russian businessman bought Le Million for his wife last September at a luxury goods fair in Cannes, France. Don't have a spare million for this made-by-request gadget? Geneva-based GoldVish has plenty of expensive phones in its lineup, including models with gold plating and diamond-studded cases.

Last year, Vertu teamed up with French jeweler Boucheron to make the second-most-expensive phone on our list, a limited-edition series of eight $310,000 handsets sporting red, jewel-encrusted snakes. The Signature Cobra includes two diamonds, two emerald eyes and 439 rubies snaking around an 18-carat rose gold case.

Like most of the phones on our list, Vertu's devices are fairly standard, "unlocked" handsets compatible with any wireless carrier whose networks use a calling technology called GSM--in the U.S., that's AT&T, formerly Cingular Wireless, and T-Mobile, a division of Deutsche.

Wireless both use a competing technology that's not compatible.) Vertu phones also include a direct-dial button to a concierge service, which can help with travel information, restaurant tips and events.

While some manufacturers flaunt diamonds, others are showcasing phone cases made from rare, antique wood. The pitch is that the varying grain patterns make each handset truly unique. Russia's Gresso boasts that its Black Aura handsets are 200 years old--the age of the African Blackwood on each phone's case. Canada's Mobiado says it has sold through its 200-unit run of the $2,200 jet-black Professional EM, made from ebony wood and hard-anodized aluminum with titanium buttons.

Source : fine-diamond