Between Apple and Samsung, the smartphone market is, pretty much, locked in, making it difficult even for longtime smartphone-makers like HTC, LG, and Sony to really compete. So when a startup builds itself around a smartphone as their first product, it has to be something special. The Essential Phone is hoping just that.
The brainchild of Android creator Andy Rubin, it’s an Android phone with a stunning and unique 5.7-inch edge-to-edge screen. And it’s not just the left and right bezels that got eliminated either, as they pushed the display all the way to the top of the phone, going so far as to surround the selfie camera.
The Essential Phone has a body cut in a mix of titanium and ceramic, which, the outfit claims, boasts a durability that trumps the aluminum most frequently used in metallic smartphone enclosures. Inside, you’ll find erstwhile familiar components, like a Snapdragon 835 SOC, 4GB of RAM, a 3040mAh battery, and 128GB of internal storage. Out front, it gets an 8 megapixel camera for all your selfie needs, while a dual-camera setup lurks around back (one 13-megapixel sensor and a dedicated 13-megapixel monochrome sensor). Both front and rear cameras can shoot 4K video.
Two holes in the back of the phone allow you to attach compatible accessories. As of now, these include a charging dock and a 360-degree camera, with promise of more to come down the line. It runs Android Nougat 7.1.1.
No word on ship date, but the Essential Phone is priced at $699.