Vertu's Constellation isn't the complete package worth the price

Evan Selleck
Contributing Editor from Arizona
Published: October 2, 2013

Phones are expensive. More often than not, phones are just as expensive as some of the computers we have in our houses. Trying to justify what makes a device, no matter how big or small, the price it is can be a tricky game to play. We can see prices range, from high to small, based entirely on a manufacturer's name, and apparently have no bearing on the device itself.

We can try to compare models, too. There are many people out there who would say something like Apple's iPhone doesn't "deserve" the high price tag that it has, especially compare to other models. The same could be said for Samsung, or even LG's latest flagship device.

You could look at Motorola and make a case there, too.

Prices are all over the place, and we're usually just at their whim. We wait, on pins and needles and on the edge of our seats for the manufacturers to announce how much a particular device will cost. We can expect a high price tag, and then sometimes we get surprised, like with Nokia's Lumia 925.

As usual, there are many, many different examples we could give that sit on both sides of the spectrum, and even right there in the middle. There's no denying that phones are expensive, and as our technology gets better, that price tag is probably going to stay right where it is. If not get higher.

I think right around $1,000 is probably way, way too expensive. You won't see many devices that near that particular price tag, but some of them can get pretty close. For instance, Apple's iPhone 5s, the 64GB model, rests "comfortably" at a $849.00 price point. That's a hefty tag, if you ask me. But there are obviously people out there who buy it, even without the two-year contract or monthly installment plans.

I'd never spend $1,000 on a phone, and I'd actively try to stay as far below that as possible at any particular moment. Yes, there are people who would pay around that price for a phone, but I can't help but be completely blown away by the idea that someone would spend more than that. A lot more than that.

And that's where the Vertu Constellation comes in. Vertu isn't a stranger to expensive devices, not by any means, and that trend continues with the Constellation. It was officially announced yesterday, late at night, and with it a slew of mid-range specifications tucked inside a ridiculously high-end shell.

Just in case you missed it, the Constellation features a 4.3-inch 720p display, with a 1.7GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor under the hood. It has 32GB of built-in storage, the standard Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and GPS, and a 1.3MP camera on the front. On the back, there's a 13-megapixel shooter. The battery is measured at 1,800mAh.

It's running Android 4.2 Jelly Bean out of the box, and has plenty of software features tucked inside, like Kaspersky anti-virus software, and even additional security software features to support encrypted VoIP calling. But, while all that software and mid-range specs may not be worth a double-take, for Vertu (and for anyone buying this thing) it's all about the hardware on the outside.

That 4.3-inch display is sapphire glass (the same glass you'll find in the iPhone 5s's TouchID hardware), and it has a forged grade-5 titanium case. Add that to the fact it's wrapped in calf leather, and you've got a pretty clear picture why the internals, or what version of Android the device is running, just doesn't matter.

But, does it warrant a price tag around $6,600? I'm sure it does, just based on that hardware. But, you know what? I still think it's about the total package, and I'm sorry, but the fact that every other high-end device on the market -- like the Galaxy S 4, One, G2, and Galaxy Note III -- all have better specifications just means the Vertu Constellation is just a waste of hard-earned money. To me, anyway.

What do you make of the Constellation? Do you think it's priced way too high? Or does the price tag reflect the sort of high-end device you'd expect to be buying? Let me know what you think.