You may have not noticed this yet, but the first-gen Blackphone, released in June 2014, paved the way for the creation of a new mobile market niche. Yes, so-called “secure” phones are now a thing, and the GranitePhone joins the likes of the BlackPhone 2 and Turing Phone in vowing to always keep your private data protected.

The first thing you’ll probably notice about the GranitePhone is, well, it looks pretty mundane on the outside. It’s definitely not as flashy as the liquid metal, waterproof Turing Phone, though it sort of resembles the BlackPhone 2, in that it’s black, minimalistic, and it doesn’t attract attention.

Similar to its rivals, the Granite comes from a smaller name in the industry than Samsung, LG or HTC, even if Archos tends to regularly make headlines with decent low-cost Androids for Europe. Developed in cahoots with security specialist Sikur however, the just-unveiled 5-incher is priced at a whopping $850.

For the flagship-level money, you might want to know exactly what you’re getting in the privacy-shielding technology department, but alas, Archos keeps the details to a minimum, merely stating the dashboard, calls, contacts, messages, and chat are encrypted, and various authentication layers block intruders from breaking in. Also, you shouldn’t worry about backdoors, apparently, and the GranitePhone runs a “secure operating system”, with a “friendly interface.”

It’d be wise for the spy-proof handheld’s manufacturers to at least reveal Android and Google app specifics, given the hardware is mediocre at best, normally warranting sub-$400 tags. The display delivers 1,080p content, the Snapdragon 615 processor is reasonably fast… for a mid-ranger, and the 2GB RAM, 16GB ROM, 16 and 8MP cameras, and especially 2,700 mAh battery are nothing to write home about.

Sources: Archos PR, Official website

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