Smartphones are quite expensive these days, especially the fully-featured, high-end premium models, but that might still be enough for a few “well-funded” people. Limited Editions are not uncommon in this industry, but nothing says “limited edition” more than an extremely limited number of devices being made with extremely extravagant materials and designs. Luxury brand Caviar has for years been making these kinds of exquisite variations of already pricey smartphones, and Samsung’s latest flagship is unsurprisingly getting the same treatment. With the launch of the Galaxy S24 series so close to the Chinese New Year, the marque took the opportunity to welcome the Year of the Dragon with a special edition that’s laden not just with gold and jewels but with references to the union of East and West that Samsung’s smartphones embody.
Just one look at this Caviar interpretation of the Galaxy S24 Ultra and you can already tell it’s far from being ordinary. That golden Korean dragon is no mere painting or sticker but is a highly-detailed bas-relief covered with 24-karat gold. That dragon is seen descending from the top of the phone, in other words, the heavens, and wraps around the analog watch that is at the center of this design.
Yes, there is an honest-to-goodness mechanical watch on this phone’s back, one that boasts a CVR ELT3350A Tourbillon with a manual winding mechanism and 19 stones. This element does add quite a bit of thickness to the phone’s otherwise slim profile, but its novelty and beauty could very well be worth that price. Curiously, the watch is encircled by the 12 signs of the “Western” Zodiac, not the Chinese roster you would expect from a phone that commemorates the Chinese New Year. These symbols, made of enamel on PVD-coated titanium, represent that mix of European and Eastern culture that is representative of Samsung’s own business.
Every inch of this rather elaborate design was made with meticulous attention to detail and symbolism. The three diamonds in the corner not only mimic a constellation but is actually a homage to Samsung’s original logo, the “three stars” from which the company takes its name. The green color of the watch dial might seem like an odd mix to the prevalent gold and black motif, but it symbolizes rebirth and prosperity, which also happens to be the color and theme of the Year of the Wood Dragon.
If the $15,070 price tag isn’t enough to mark this design as something only the elite can afford, the fact that there will only be 24 such devices made will definitely cement that image. The chances of meeting another VIP holding the same phone would be as low as meeting a mythical Korean dragon, but the prestige of owning a rare and enchanting piece of craftsmanship is all that matters to those who will be scrambling to fall in that very short queue.