By Stephen Schenck | March 12, 2012 5:01 PM
Designer smartphones can take all forms, from those that add just a few well-executed lines of color, to gold-adorned facades that push the limits of good taste. Just as we never quite know what to expect from how one will look, we’re always surprised by their prices, which can range from having just a small premium over mass-market smartphones to those stretching into the thousands of dollars. The latest to be announced definitely holds one of the loftier price tags we’ve come across, with Tag Heuer announcing its Racer Android, starting at nearly $3700.
We might be a little more (not much) comfortable with the Racer’s sticker price if we knew some more about its hardware, but for the moment Tag Heuer hasn’t released detailed specs. Honestly, though, for the kind of person who’s buying this phone, looks are going to matter above all else, so how does the Racer fare?
Tag Heuer says the Racer’s design is inspired by touring cars, and we can certainly see that. The heavy use of carbon fiber components, highlighted with a few touches of color, leads to the sort of design that would look right at home on a high-end sports car’s dash. That said, it doesn’t necessarily look like the most comfortable phone to grip and use, with its surfaced covered with all sorts of protrusions and ridges, and is reminiscent of a bulky, ruggedized handset.
Presumably, the Racer will arrive with Ice Cream Sandwich, though likely heavily modified with a custom UI. Tag Heuer mentions a “3D user interface”, but we haven’t seen any pics or video of the system in operation. We should get the details in the coming months, leading up to the phone’s release in July.