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Versace prepares launch of $5,000 mobile phone; competes with luxury watch market

Italian fashion house Versace plans to introduce a luxury mobile phone in May to compete with rival brands and the premium watch market.
Written by Andrew Nusca, Contributor

And you thought an Apple iPhone cost a ton of money.

Italian fashion house Versace plans to introduce its first mobile phone in May, to the tune of some $5,000.

The company is partnering with French manufacturer ModeLabs Group for the device, which also makes phones for French fashion house Christian Dior and watchmaker Tag Heuer, reports the Wall Street Journal.

Introduced in 2008, the Dior phone retails for about $5,000. The new Versace device is said to retail for even more than that, and will be officially unveiled next week in Paris.

The Versace phone joins the Dior handset as well as Dolce & Gabbana, Prada and Armani handsets as phones become, well, pricey (disposable) fashion accessories.

The rub: The high-end mobile phone may be the next luxury watch.

Such devices are in demand the most in Asia, Russia and the Middle East, according to the WSJ report.

True to Versace style, the bespoke phone -- yes, it can be customized for the individual customer -- will feature premium materials such as leather.

The operating system? Your guess is as good as mine.

Illustration: Motorola's Korea-only Motoroi Android phone. No, it's not the Versace phone.

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