Essential Phone PH-2 cancelled, Rubin looks to sell firm

Essential Phone 2: Did Android founder Andy Rubin just cancel his next phone?

Essential Phone 2: Did Android founder Andy Rubin just cancel his next phone?

The President of Essential refuted the report by stating that the smartphone sold "in the six figures" in 2017 but did not provide an exact figure. Among the legitimate concerns are that, if Essential is sold off, it's unclear whether the company will continue to deliver software updates.

The company launched its first-ever smartphone, the Essential PH-1, back in August of a year ago with a build-up of hype and fanfare. Their first commercial product, the Essential PH-1, was announced almost 1 year ago. At the same time Essential are shifting their focus to the smart home products that they launched aside their phone past year. Faced with early software bugs and bad camera performance, Essential eventually dropped the phone's price to just $500 in October 2017.

Bloomberg reports that the company has sold about 150,000 Essential Phones to date.

All the above problems could not affect the sales of Essential Phone.

The promise of the phone was the modularity-it featured a magnetic connector at the back where add-ons could be attached, but the company only developed one, a $50 360-degree camera. The camera was low resolution, bulky, and hot.

The failed modular system can be added to a long list of planned Essential products that never (at least, at the time of writing) made it to market. Samsung and Google own the mobile OS and everyone else has quickly become a second-rate competitor.

Even if Essential stays afloat, it looks like we can kiss the dream of an Essential Phone 2 goodbye. Its sources have revealed the firm is now workin on a smart home device. "Think of it as an orchestra conductor for your digital instruments", Mara Segal, then head of product for home devices at Essential, said at the reveal, "something that can get them to start to work together in new, exciting ways". The Essential Home is "on track for release by next year", according to the report.

Essential was always setting itself up for a David/Goliath battle, but it seems that nine months after showing off their flagship smartphone they've realized they weren't quite ready to go up against the giants.

On Twitter, Rubin emphasized that Essential has additional products in development, but did not deny the details of Bloomberg's report.

Essential first phone, also called the PH-1, came highly touted due to the pedigree of Rubin, and backing from the likes of the Amazon Alexa Fund, Tencent Holdings and Rubin's Playground Global startup incubator, of Palo Alto.

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