One of the more ambitious and interesting hardware projects on a crowdfunding platform recently has to be the Quasar IV, a smartphone designed entirely around security, encryption and identity protection. QSAlpha’s Quasar IV uses authentication tech called Quatrix, and a hybrid Android/Linux and Quatrix mobile OS called QuaOS to make sure communications in and out of the phone are protected.
The Quasar IV is going to be made, despite the fact that there are only nine days remaining in its Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign, and only $48,796 raised out of $3.2 million sought on a fixed funding goal (meaning they don’t get anything if they haven’t got the whole amount committed). While the Quasar IV won’t raise that much money in the next 9 days, it apparently will get made regardless thanks to help from outside investors.
On the Quasar IV Indiegogo page, an update posted a few hours ago says that production with “one of the world’s largest consumer electronics OEMS manufacturers” has already begun, as a result of support from “various vendors and companies” who share the founding team’s passion for a vision of an ultra-secure mobile device. Early backers will be added to the pre-order list for the Quasar IV automatically, and will be notified about how to buy one when the time comes, which QSAlpha CEO and founder Steve Chao says will happen sometime in Q2 2014.
There’s very little in the way of information about who has picked up the tab for the initial production run, but Quasar’s appeal, while niche, applies very specifically to firms that require incredibly high levels of security and encryption, which are resistant to outside attempts (*cough* NSA *cough*) to read said data. QSAlpha has said it was inspired by the stealthy ways of the ninja in designing the phone and its operating system, and there are, conceivably, clients who would pay well for a phone that stays truly off-grid.
Indiegogo has sort of become a place for ambitious new smartphone concepts to go to attract a lot of attention before falling well short of their funding goal (see the Canonical Ubuntu Edge), but it looks like the Quasar IV might become real with a little help from some potentially high-powered friends. Or, it could always disappear in a puff of smoke, ninja-style.