Boeing's Secure Black Smartphone: 10 Cool Features We All Might Want

1 - Boeing's Secure Black Smartphone: 10 Cool Features We All Might Want
2 - It's Actually Not a Bad Handset
3 - Layer Upon Layer of Security
4 - Modularity Is at Its Core
5 - Calling In a Satellite
6 - Pick a Network, Any Network
7 - It's Android-Based
8 - It's Fully Tamperproof
9 - There's No Way to Fix the Black
10 - The Black Self-Destructs
11 - You Will Never Get Your Hands on It
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Boeing's Secure Black Smartphone: 10 Cool Features We All Might Want

by Don Reisinger

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It's Actually Not a Bad Handset

Although its design might indicate that the Boeing Black is a low-end device, its specifications are actually respectable. The device comes with a 4.3-inch qHD display and has a dual-core 1.2GHz ARM Cortex-A9 processor. The handset is extremely thick by today's standards, measuring 13.25mm, but all in all, it's not a bad design.

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Layer Upon Layer of Security

The amount of security features built into the Boeing Black is astounding. There are literally layers of security built into the Black. Boeing claims that the device has hardware-based encryption and other unidentified security features. It comes with operating system policy controls and is compatible with government-supported device management systems.

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Modularity Is at Its Core

According to a product card Boeing released, the Black has a modular design with expansion ports to accommodate diverse mission needs. It has both built-in sensors and support for additional sensors to suit specialized needs.

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Calling In a Satellite

Not surprisingly, the Boeing Black is capable of connecting to satellites. Boeing, of course, didn't get into too much detail about this feature, but it appears that with some sort of enhancement, users can have full "satellite connectivity," which has been an essential feature in the military and intelligence communities for decades.

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Pick a Network, Any Network

Since the U.S. government has its own cellular networks outside the scope of the commercial carrier mobile networks, the Boeing Black supports both. Moreover, Boeing says that the agent in the field can seamlessly switch between the networks as needed. Boeing hasn't said what commercial networks the Black will support, but chances are it's all of them.

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It's Android-Based

Android has gotten a bad rap when it comes to security. Many researchers and analysts have said that the operating system is a top destination for hackers because of its size and the relative ease with which they can infiltrate the platform. However, Boeing apparently is confident enough in Android that it's using it as the operating system of choice in the Black. Granted, it's a heavily modified version of Android, but it's Google's platform, nonetheless.

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It's Fully Tamperproof

Due to government regulations, Boeing was forced to file more details on the device's functionality with the Federal Communications Commission. It was through that filing that the Web discovered that the Black is completely tamperproof. The filing says that the handset is sealed with epoxy and screws. The heads on those screws, the filing says, "are covered with tamperproof covering to identify attempted disassembly."

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There's No Way to Fix the Black

All of that hardware protection means one thing: There's absolutely no way to fix any hardware issue with the Black. That's partly because the device isn't accessible from the outside, but also because it comes with a "Mission Impossible" feature that excites spy movie fans.

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The Black Self-Destructs

This is obviously the coolest feature of the bunch, right? The Boeing Black self-destructs if it detects any attempt to tamper with it. The device wouldn't self-destruct in the sense of blowing up. But all hardware would be disabled and software and data would be destroyed with an attempt to open the device or change its functionality.

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You Will Never Get Your Hands on It

With of the security issues mobile device users have to deal with these days, we might all wish that we could have a Boeing Black of our own. Unfortunately, at this point it appears that the Black is designed for government employees and not consumers. Let's hope that changes at some point in the future, if not from Boeing, perhaps from another device maker with similar ideas.

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