Reports say that Silent Circle and Geeksphone have started talking about a project to create a “Blackphone”, a handset dedicated to protecting the user’s privacy. The device is reported to be carrier and vendor independent, have the ability to make and receive phone calls securely, as well as transfer storage files, send and receive test messages, and perform video calls without compromising user privacy, while also having the ability to anonymize activity with the help of VPN.
The handset will be powered by the PrivatOS operating system, an Android custom build that focuses on security. There will be no major difference other than security related to the Android build, and will still have the same experience as a normal Android version. The handset is also said to be factory unlocked, meaning it will not be restricted to any carrier, and will have the tools users need to stay on the move, carry out business, and keep in touch with others while blocking out snoops, pre-installed.
Nothing is truly secure however, even for what Blackphone is trying to achieve. Its communications principle is based on both the sender and recipient of having an encrypted device and client. If a recipient should use an email client to which government spies might have access, for instance, it would render the privacy functions of Blackphone obsolete.
No pricing has been made available up to this point, but Silent Circle and Geeksphone are said to reveal the Blackphone handset at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on February the 24th and will start receiving pre-orders for the handset on the same day.