Boeing, primarily known as an aerospace company, unveiled its first Android smartphone on Wednesday. The Boeing Black is a security-focused phone with the ability to self-destruct if tampered with.
According to the company, “The Boeing Black smartphone was designed with security and modularity in mind to ensure our customers can use the same smartphone across a range of missions and configurations.” To that end, the phone can be modified via an expansion port on its back, which could allow agencies to integrate additional sensors or provide the device with satellite connectivity, for instance.
“The Boeing Black phone is manufactured as a sealed device both with epoxy around the casing and with screws, the heads of which are covered with tamper proof covering to identify attempted disassembly. Any attempt to break open the casing of the device would trigger functions that would delete the data and software contained within the device and make the device inoperable.”
Essentially, this means the Boeing Black could erase itself if tampered with, which is pretty awesome, in a James Bond sort of way. However, I would be worried about the phone accidentally mistaking a really hard drop for someone trying to crack open its case. Boeing has built in a number of other security features as well, such as encrypted storage and a hardware root of trust.
Aside from all of that, it looks like a relatively normal, albeit lower-end, Android handset. It has a 4.3-inch, 960 x 540 screen and a 1.2GHz dual-core ARM Cortex A9 CPU. And it can operate on CDMA, GSM and LTE frequency bands, which means it can be used on many different networks around the world.
Boeing hasn’t announced a price or release date yet, but unless you work for a U.S. Intelligence agency or star in Homeland, you probably won’t be able to get your hands on one.