In May, the Essential Phone aroused a lot of interest. Made by Android’s co-founder Andy Rubin, the promise was to deliver the device come June. But a whole month has passed since that and we are still stuck at the pre-order stage.
If you have forgotten, Essential isn’t your typical smartphone. It’s an ambitious project that looks to challenge major flagship manufacturers and push the modular concept.
It features an edge-to-edge screen to make for a bezel-less and futuristic look. You will find Gorilla Glass 5 on top of the 5.71-inch display for the added protection making for a 1,312 x 2,560 resolution and a 19:10 aspect ratio.
We know the handset is set to run the latest Android software upon launch alongside a new virtual assistant. But under the hood, the phone impresses further. An octa-core Snapdragon 835 processor clocked at 2.45GHz is said to be the heart of the device alongside the Adreno 540 GPU and 4GB RAM.
Although there is no microSD expansion to the 128GB of on-board storage, expansion of features elsewhere is possible. Out of the box, you will find monochrome and RGB 13MP sensors making for a dual camera primary setup, with an 8MP camera for selfies. But a modular attachment sold for $50 (Dh184) can also turn the primary camera into a 360-degree panoramic one.
Combined with the fingerprint scanner at the back and the 3,040mAh battery, the Essential PH-1 is definitely flagship worthy. And especially at $699, the pricing is very reasonable. We just hope the delay is not too long.
With Essential trying to make an impact on the market, this is an inauspicious start. But you cannot dismiss a company entirely for a delay. Rubin deserves the benefit of the doubt. And we’re sure he will overcome this to deliver the much-anticipated handset. It just means it will take a bit more time for the phone to hit our sandy shores, as my colleague put it.