The Vertu "Ascent" is in a class of its own... "yes, but it's four times the price of any other high-end phone!", you might say. And you are right, but contrary to the others this one feels in your hand like a million bucks!!! Why is the Vertu better than the others? Simple, it works. The software does nothing fancy. What it does, it does very well. Actually the insides is nothing else than a two year old Nokia, but a Nokia that they had the time to properly progam, contrary to all others. The Bluetooth is impeccable, actually the only Bluetooth that I have ever owned that actually works! (I recommend you use the SonyEricsson headsets, they work with all Phones and are much more reliable than any others out there). The outsides are symply built to last, and last. Ceramic, leather, sapphire crystal and liquid metal make it much more durable than anything in the market today. The buttons have rubies under them to reduce wear, and it works! The touch on the buttons is simply magic and smooth. I have been test-driving the Vertu for 8 months now (actually I test-drive many phones) and it looks and feels like the first day. Furthermore, it is extremely stable, the software has not "bugged" once in all this time! This is not so with the other Nokia, Samsung and SonyEricsson phones that I have tested.
POSITIVE: It's built like a Tank! The software is properly written, finished and tested. First time Bluetooth works on a phone, ever. The sound quality inside and outside is great. Should there be a new Ascent next year with more options and features (maybe 3G, quad-band or Bluetooth 2.0) you can send it in and they will overhaul and upgrade the insides. At your cost of course, but your Vertu will be up to date. After having one of these, looking for phones is a thing of the past. Ah, and the absolute best thing... it does NOT have a camera! Yes, this means that you will not need to leave your phone at the desk in Government Buildings and paranoid Multinationals. Hurray, you have a phone that will not be the wet dream of adolescent MMS pros'...!
NEGATIVE: The weight. A bit too heavy for most, and way too heavy for the Ladies. Personally I love the weigh but I understand that most people prefer something light. The "Concierge Button" is completely useless if you don't live in the UK or US. If you are not a big traveler don't bother. Chances are that if you can afford a Vertu you will have a personal secretary and better connections than the Concierge Service to begin with. Conclusion; the Concierge Service is redundant. Truly disappointing are the accessories; There is no deskstand, and at that price point it should be expected. The charger and headset are substandard, even for a midrange priced phone.