With all of the recent headlines related to privacy and security, it was only a matter of time before companies came out of the woodwork to showcase new products and services to capitalize on the growing interest and increasing demand for secure communications. However, few expected that virtual operator FreedomPop would be the next player in the burgeoning market following Blackphone, as it has announced a heavily modified version of the Samsung Galaxy S II in “The Privacy Phone“.
The phone is a refurbished Samsung Galaxy S II with minor changes from the Samsung Epic 4G on Touch on which its based on, such as featuring Samsung’s Exynos processor and featuring FreedomPop’s own customized Android build designed for end-to-end encryption.The phone features 128-bit encryption to secure voice calls and text messages, provides anonymous internet browsing and prevents online marketers from tracking web activity and also prevents data monitoring from third parties.
The Privacy Phone also bypasses web site restrictions so it can connect to any site while shielding users from viruses, malware, blocks malicious web sites, and prevents phishing attacks. The phone is available now online for $189.99 with 3 months of voice and messaging service included in the cost of the phone, along with 500MB of data per month, after which the service plan will cost $10 monthly.
As an added incentive to push purchases of the phone, FreedomPop is also allowing anonymous purchases of the phone with the Bitcoin cryptocurrency through the BitPay service for both the phone and service plan, provided you live in an area with sufficient coverage for FreedomPop service. FreedomPop COO Steven Sesar released a statement regarding the release of the phone earlier today:
“In light of recent violations in consumer’s privacy across social networks and mobile devices, privacy is becoming increasingly important to many Americans and we all have a right to communicate anonymously. Large carriers don’t have the flexibility, desire or creativity to invest in privacy. We don’t agree with this approach and felt it was up to us to create a truly private mobile phone service at an affordable price.”