Meet the Turing Phone, a futuristic-looking, Android-based smartphone built from the ground up with security in mind. Its creators at Turing Robotic Industries claim to have made a phone that is virtually un-hackable and indestructible, and though these claims are practically begging to be disproved, there's no denying that this device is quite the head-turner.
The shell around its 5.5-inch, 1080p screen is made from a material called "liquidmorphium." Though it sounds like a plot device from Star Trek, liquidmorphium is actually an amorphous alloy that's stronger than both steel and titanium. The liquid metal ensures that the Turing Phone won't bend, break, or chip—even under extreme conditions.
And if your idea of "extreme conditions" includes water, worry not. Thanks to a nano-coating on all of its internal circuitry, the Turing Phone is absurdly waterproof. The phone doesn't even try to seal liquid out; if it happens to get submerged, you can just shake it out and go about your day.
You'll find a fingerprint scanner on the side, but what you won't find is a headphone jack or USB port. Instead, the phone charges via a connector similar to Apple's MagSafe, and if you want to listen to music on headphones, it's Bluetooth or nothing.
The Turing Phone comes in three distinct styles—Beowulf, Cardinal, and Pharaoh—that feature radical color schemes and patterns that fly in the face of current smartphone design trends. While the iPhones and Samsung Galaxies of the world emphasize neutral tones, pastels, and clean lines, the Turing Phone is colorful and busy, looking like something out of a mid-'90s sci-fi movie. The aesthetic is somewhere in between art deco and modernism, with angular lines and clashing colors.
The look and feel is sure to be polarizing, but it's the hacker-proof design that's likely to garner the most chatter. Turing Robotics refers to the end-to-end authentication process it has created as a "circle of trust." Essentially, the phone automatically recognizes other Turing Phones without the use of a third party key management system.
Therein lies the rub: To take advantage of Turing's hyper-secure software, you have to communicate with a fellow Turing Phone user. That might prove difficult, since the company only plans to release 10,000 units for preorder. The Turing Phone's biggest selling point may be undercut by its own exclusivity.
But even if availability weren't so limited, would consumers take the concept? It's easy to sell sci-fi alloys, waterproof nano-coating, and offbeat design, but it's much harder to pull people away from the headphones they've been using for years in the name of security. Still, this is a niche phone, and it will almost certainly find its niche audience.
The Turing Phone is available for preorder today. Unlocked, the phone sells for $610 for the 16GB model, $740 for 64GB, or $870 for 128GB.