Blackphone launches a new phone, tablet and privacy platform

Silent Circle, the outfit behind the security-oriented Blackphone, has just revealed two new handsets and "the world's first enterprise privacy platform." The first Blackphone was unveiled last year for (understandably) paranoid entrepreneurs. It was a response to revelations of mass data collection, and the latest devices build on that. Last year's phone was made by Spanish outfit GeeksPhone, but since then, Silent Circle has wrestled control of the brand, and this is its first homemade device. The Blackphone 2 carries similar privacy features, but actually gives you a better phone, with an octa-core CPU, 3GB of RAM, 32GB of storage, a bigger battery and a 5.5-inch 1080p display. Meanwhile, the Blackphone+ (briefly mentioned by Silent Circle's co-founder earlier) is a privacy-focused tablet coming later in 2015. So far, there are no exact specs on the tablet (it's not ready for prime time), and there's no price on either device. Both are slated to arrive in the second half of this year, though.

The Blackphone 2, even in prototype form, represents a big step up in build quality from the original. It's pretty light, and feels very durable. Unfortunately, all the phones here at MWC are stuck on a demo loop, so there's no way for us to put the new, beefier processor to the test, but the display looks way better than the original's, and the phone will undoubtedly be faster than Blackphone users are used to.

Blackphone 2

The Blackphone gang also announced that it has tied its devices, PrivatOS Android-based operating system, suite of apps and store together into an "enterprise privacy platform." The company described that as a "vision to drive the second stage of growth for Silent Circle," without laying out concrete details of exactly how everything will work together. However, it did reveal one new service: Along with "Silent" encrypted calling and texts, there's now Silent Meeting for secure business conferencing.

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Aaron Souppouris contributed to this report.