06
Dec
10

This Week’s Object of Lust: Dunhill Biometric Wallet


Rarely will I come across something that immediately jumps out as being incredibly cool.  Without question, Dunhill’s Biometric Wallet falls into that category.  I have a few bad habits, but chief amongst them is my tendency to misplace things.  Whether it be jumping out of a cab after a few pints on a Friday night without my wallet, putting my phone down on the counter at the bank, or table at a restaurant, or seat pocket on a plane, or…. well, you get the picture.  Small accessories and I rarely form a lasting bond.  Which makes this wallet seemingly purpose-built for people like me.  First, it requires a brief swipe of the thumb to open, thereby preventing the theft of cash, credit cards, phone numbers or whatever else you keep in your wallet should it ever go missing.  Second, and even more importantly, it offers bluetooth connectivity to your phone and provides audible warning when the two are separated by more than 5 metres (16 feet).  So, you can leave your wallet in a pair of pants across your bedroom without bother, but, if you hop out of a cab with your BlackBerry remaining quietly tucked away on the seat, it’ll sound the alarm.  And vice versa – if you misplace your wallet, your phone will give you the same courteous notification.

Luckily, these features do not come at the expense of style.  The wallet is constructed from beautiful and ultra-lightweight carbon fibre, so you won’t feel like you’re lugging around a computer in your back pocket.  It features places for your credit cards inside, along with a money clip to keep your banknotes safely organized.  And really, this combination of style and ingenuity should be expected from Alfred Dunhill, a British company that many North Americans may not be familiar with.  Originally started in the late 19th century by its namesake founder, it supplied luxury goods meant to accessorize one’s automobile under the slogan “Everything but the Motor”.  Dunhill also became famous as a high-end producer of tobacciana (including their famed pipes with trademark white dot, their rollagas lighters and even custom tobacco blends that they made on request).  Dunhill has long provided accessories for the James Bond movies (including the cigarette lighter used by Bond in Dr. No) and was also featured in the remake of the movie Alfie with Jude Law given how quintessentially British the company is in terms of quality and style.  The company has, over time, branched out into luxury clothing, watches, leather goods, ties and a host of other products, always with a nod to the company’s British heritage, and sometimes with a nod to their automotive roots.  Quite surprisingly for North Americans, Dunhill is the third most popular luxury brand in China, following only Louis Vuitton (and beating out Gucci, Dior, Armani and Hermès).

The only drawback with the Biometric Wallet is its staggering price tag ($825 or £525) – then again, items at the forefront of technology always cost an arm and a leg.  I’m not suggesting that we should all run out and pay retail, as cool as this particular item is (and, I actually just purchased a new wallet anyway).  However, this won’t stop me from trolling eBay, hoping that one of these slips through the cracks for a reasonable sum.  For more info, check out out Dunhill’s website (www.dunhill.com), or the page specific to this wallet, (www.dunhill.com/en-us/…/wallets/biometricwallet-qgk0169).

 

NOTE:  Speak of the devil, there’s one up on eBay right now: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=320629718008&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:ITOpening bid is £99 (approx $155US), or a £425 reduction from the retail price.  Buy it now is £250 ($395), or more than 50% off retail if anyone is interested.  I’m watching the auction and am very interested how it’ll shake out.

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