• Andy Rubinís Essential Phone



    Andy Rubin finally unveiled his Essential Phone yesterday, with The Verge getting the scoop a little early. You're looking at what I think is the phone's standout feature, a screen that seems to wrap around the front camera and sensor assembly. It's visually striking and also smartówith notifications on the left and indicators on the right the centre of your typical Android status bar is usually empty anyway, so why not put the selfie cam there?

    The phone also features a titanium and ceramic housing, and proprietary connectors for first-party accessories that at present include a 360-degree camera and a docking station. Specs are as follows:

    Display
    5.71 inch Quad-HD
    2560 x 1312 pixels @ 504 ppi
    Corning Gorilla Glass 5

    Processor
    Qualcomm Snapdragon 835

    RAM / Storage
    4 GB / 128 GB

    Rear-Facing Camera
    13-megapixel, f/1.85
    Dual RBG + Mono

    Front-Facing Camera
    8-megapixel, f/2.2
    16:9 aspect ratio

    Battery
    3,040 mAh
    Fast charging via USB

    Colours
    Black Moon
    Ocean Depths
    Pure White
    Stellar Grey

    Now the bad news: There's no headphone jack and no mention of dust or water resistance. The phone will only ship within the U.S. and is priced at $699 USD. Also, for a phone from the father of Android there's been surprisingly few details about the software running it, only a promise from Rubin that there will be nothing on this device that the user doesn't want.

    Do you think this premium smartphone has a chance in an already-saturated Android market, or is it essentially a cash grab?

    Sources: Essential, The Verge

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    This article was originally published in forum thread: Andy Rubinís Essential Phone started by acurrie View original post
    Comments 11 Comments
    1. zapjb's Avatar
      zapjb -
      Money grab? Depends if Andy is financing this with his own money. Whoever's financing this what's the break even unit number 1k, 10k or more units? Without 10s of millions in adverts I don't see this selling 10k units not even close.
    1. veriztd's Avatar
      veriztd -
      Hardly seems to be a viable phone in the US and merely a novelty for a very limited amount of users. Time will tell......
    1. frail's Avatar
      frail -
      At that price point and without carrier support it's going to need a pretty large niche to survive. Others like this have gotten by on offering a good bang for the buck. I'm not seeing anything particularly compelling about its price/features combo that would attract a large group of buyers.
    1. schultzter's Avatar
      schultzter -
      I think the smart phone has pretty much been figured out. Now it's just just novelty features vs. Samsung/Apple juggernaut.

      So I don't see what's so great about Andy's new phone.

      Where's the ear-piece on this bezel-less phone anyways? And don't get me started on effin' dongles!!!

      I like the idea of detachable modules, but one that I would really like to see is a real camera module. Even if it needs it's own dedicated camera app, but leverages the phone for storage and then I can use those high-quality photos like any other photo I take with my phone.
    1. NotABiot's Avatar
      NotABiot -
      The design blunder of the missing headphone jack kills it for me.

      If I were deaf, I wouldn't mind at all.
    1. jb82's Avatar
      jb82 -
      Quote Originally Posted by schultzter View Post
      I like the idea of detachable modules, but one that I would really like to see is a real camera module. Even if it needs it's own dedicated camera app, but leverages the phone for storage and then I can use those high-quality photos like any other photo I take with my phone.
      The market is screaming for someone to improve the smartphone camera beyond software trickery and camera gimmickry. Someone needs to figure out how to put in a decent sized sensor into a phone - otherwise all the progress we will see is the leading phones trying to edge each other off the dxomark throne with tiny improvements. It doesn't have to be a 1" sensor. How about something in-between? Like the Nokia 808 used a 1/1.2" sensor. Nokia were on to something before they screwed it up and sold to microsoft. It is not as if phones are getting any lighter. The essentials phone is a good 185g. The pixel XL is a big phone. People want more battery and don't care if it means a thicker/heavier phone. So it isn't as if super small size and weight matter that much to users. Come one someone get a decent sensor into a decent phone.
    1. zapjb's Avatar
      zapjb -
      Quote Originally Posted by jb82 View Post
      The market is screaming for someone to improve the smartphone camera beyond software trickery and camera gimmickry....
      Amen! Most of the phones from flagships down to bargain phones their cameras suck. Whenever I see a new phone I want it's got 8MP or less & 1/2.4 fps or higher. So I'm keeping my 3.5 yr old LG G Flex D950. If the camera has good specs & at least 80% don't I go to GSMArena to compare cameras. And I'm still rocking my LG G Flex.
    1. jb82's Avatar
      jb82 -
      The nexus 5x/6P and pixel cameras are really good. Worth buying those phones for the camera. A google phone with a larger sensor would just wipe out the competition.
    1. Tsepz_GP's Avatar
      Tsepz_GP -
      Quote Originally Posted by zapjb View Post
      Money grab? Depends if Andy is financing this with his own money. Whoever's financing this what's the break even unit number 1k, 10k or more units? Without 10s of millions in adverts I don't see this selling 10k units not even close.
      It's a money grab to finance Playground, Andy 's new start-up.

      Sent from my SM-G935F using Tapatalk
    1. Greenmule's Avatar
      Greenmule -
      It does have carrier support: Sprint.

      A match made in...somewhere...any port in a storm.
    1. frail's Avatar
      frail -
      Quote Originally Posted by Greenmule View Post
      It does have carrier support: Sprint.

      A match made in...somewhere...any port in a storm.
      Andy should ask Jon Rubinstein how well that worked out... At least it'll be unlocked, though.