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The Essential Phone is official: a bezel-less handset for the future by the creator of Android

Posted: , by Victor H.

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The Essential Phone is official: a bezel-less handset for the future by the creator of Android

The Essential Phone has just broken cover. It's the first phone by the namesake company, conceived by Andy Rubin, the person who created Android and showing his idea of what the Android phone of the future should look like.

And it's a daring new device: it's a true bezel-less phone with a full-screen display that takes even more of the front than the Galaxy S8, and it's a modular phone at its core. 

A new rival to iPhones and Samsung Galaxies emerges

Plus, it's an all-out flagship phone that is launching first in the United States. It's got all flagship bells and whistles: the top-end Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 system chip with 4 gigs of RAM, and a whopping 128GB of on-board storage. 

But it's also different than many flagships in its philosophy: it ships with no junk bloatware, and it does not even have a logo, a welcome change from popular flagships where you often have overwhelming stamps and logos all over the place. The Essential Phone is also a philosophy, one that Andy Rubin himself outlined in these three key principles:

  • Devices are your personal property. We won’t force you to have anything on them you don’t want to have.
  • We will always play well with others. Closed ecosystems are divisive and outdated.
  • Devices shouldn’t become outdated every year. They should evolve with you.

No dent on the Essential Phone after a drop

No dent on the Essential Phone after a drop

The phone is also made to last. Since it's a bezel-less design, it's especially important that the Essential Phone is durable. 

To ensure this, the company uses titanium for the body of the device, a material so hard that when you drop the phone on its edge, it does not dent or scratch like aluminum. The back is made of ceramic, a material that is very hard to scratch. In terms of colors, the Essential Phone will be available in black, grey, white and a dual-tone model. Of course, it has gone through drop tests to ensure that it will withstand the damage of an average drop as much as possible.

Essential Phone
PlatformAndroid 7 Nougat
Display5.71" LTPS LCD with 19:10 ratio
2560 x 1312 pixel Quad HD
Dimensions
Weight
141.5 x 71.1 x 7.8mm
185 grams
SoC
RAM
Snapdragon 835 (10nm)
4GB RAM
CamerasDual rear camera (13MP Dual RGB + Mono fusion system)
8MP front cam with 4K video
Storage128GB UFS 2.0
- no microSD card slot
Battery3,040 mAh
with USB-C fast charging
Special featuresTitanium body, Ceramic back, Gorilla Glass 5
Magnetic dock, 6Gbps Wireless Accessory Connector
4x microphones with noise cancellation support
Bluetooth 5.0 LE

But the real magic, the special sauce of the Essential Phone is that it is trying to create something new: a system of accessories and modules. For this, the phone has a magnetic connector in the form of two dots located on the back of the phone, where you can snap additional modules. The handset also comes with a dedicated wireless data transfer connector that supports speeds of up to 6Gbps. The first accessory coming with it is a 360-degree camera that you can magnetically snap to the back of the phone. It comes as a bundle with the phone for just $50 on top of the Essential Phone's price.


On the back, the Essential has got a dual-camera system. It's not like the one on the iPhone, though. Here, the secondary camera is monochrome one, that captures much more light, and the output from the regular camera combined with the monochrome picture is combined for a superior end result. Up front, there is an 8-megapixel camera for selfies that shoots 4K videos.

It should also be noted: the Essential Phone does not have a 3.5mm headset jack, just like the iPhone 7.

Essential Phone price and release date


You can reserve your Essential Phone starting today, May 30th, but this does not mean that you will get it soon and a reservation is not a pre-order. In fact, Essential is clearly saying that it is not yet ready to provide a specific release date for the phone. We know the price: it's $700 for the phone, slightly above the price of a modern flagship like the iPhone, but on par with the Samsung Galaxy S8, and $750 for a bundle with the magnetically connecting 360-degree camera. 

We also know that the Essential Phone has the proper 4G LTE support and CDMA support to run on all four major U.S. carriers including Verizon, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile, but we do not yet know when it will be available. It's also not clear when or whether the phone will be available outside the United States, but chances are that this will happen at a further time in the future.

Sure, the Essential Phone will have a hard time competing against the iPhones and Galaxies in the world, but it provides something else: a breath of fresh air for those who want something new and something different in a flagship. We for once, can't wait to try it.


source: Essential

82 Comments
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posted on 30 May 2017, 05:36 1

1. surethom (Posts: 967; Member since: 04 Mar 2009)


Full screen NICE, any news on the screen size? Any News on Price? & if releasing outside america like here in the UK. Im not a fan of the monochrome second cameras i prefer a zoomed in second camera But will wait for photo samples.

posted on 30 May 2017, 05:48 7

6. Bankz (Posts: 2023; Member since: 08 Apr 2016)


Its a beautiful phone indeed and it has no curved edges with in turn makes it all the more useful that being said, theres no headphone jack and its attempts at modujarity are mediocre at best. Here, motorola still schools everyone and then some. Anyway congrats @essential at a terrific first attempt.

posted on 30 May 2017, 06:00

15. Bankz (Posts: 2023; Member since: 08 Apr 2016)


The screen size is 5.71"

posted on 30 May 2017, 06:00 2

16. yann (Posts: 381; Member since: 15 Jul 2010)


Dude, it's written: 5.71' display size

posted on 30 May 2017, 06:09 4

20. Myphoneisonfire (Posts: 355; Member since: 05 Sep 2016)


Wasnt there earlier , they updated the page.

posted on 30 May 2017, 06:31

27. trojan_horse (Posts: 5018; Member since: 06 May 2016)


And... with 19:10 aspect ratio! WTF

posted on 30 May 2017, 10:34 1

62. southernzombie (Posts: 150; Member since: 17 Jan 2017)


lol and everybody thought the 18:9 was odd. personally I like the more narrow screens.

posted on 30 May 2017, 06:12

22. surethom (Posts: 967; Member since: 04 Mar 2009)


Not when the article was written it too Phonearena 15 minutes to update with the Details of the phone. & I can not edit the post.

posted on 30 May 2017, 08:02 1

49. SYSTEM_LORD (Posts: 1023; Member since: 05 Oct 2015)


That phone screen is about as big as I am tall. Do you mean 5.71" by chance?

posted on 30 May 2017, 06:48

32. Mreveryphone (Posts: 1340; Member since: 22 Apr 2014)


Looks like a iPhone 4 or 5... Wonder what other accessories they'll make for the magnetic connector??

posted on 30 May 2017, 07:12

42. Bankz (Posts: 2023; Member since: 08 Apr 2016)


Yeah, Iphone 5 methinks.

posted on 30 May 2017, 05:38 3

2. Sammy_DEVIL737 (Posts: 95; Member since: 28 Nov 2016)


Wow that's something different.

posted on 30 May 2017, 05:54 1

10. Bankz (Posts: 2023; Member since: 08 Apr 2016)


Well, i dont think its all that different tbh. Thats not a bad thing though as this might well be the most beautiful and exciting flagship of 2017 (so far).

posted on 30 May 2017, 05:40 5

3. DoggyDangerous (Posts: 1010; Member since: 28 Aug 2015)


Finally no cheap aluminum. Hail to titanium.

posted on 30 May 2017, 06:51 9

34. Lyngdoh (Posts: 298; Member since: 06 Sep 2012)


When the phone is dropped
Aluminum : OMG I hope the phone is okay
Titanium : OMG I hope the floor is okay

posted on 30 May 2017, 08:36 1

57. combatmedic870 (Posts: 933; Member since: 02 Sep 2015)


Titanium it's really a very hard metal. I have a titanium Tissot. It scratches plenty.

posted on 30 May 2017, 11:34

67. ph00ny (Posts: 1518; Member since: 26 May 2011)


Hell yeah. Never understood the whole aluminum swoon by everyone

posted on 30 May 2017, 05:43 1

4. cmdacos (Posts: 710; Member since: 01 Nov 2016)


Looks great except the hole in the screen. I know the status bar will black it out in some applications but in others it's a design nightmare.

posted on 30 May 2017, 05:50

7. Bankz (Posts: 2023; Member since: 08 Apr 2016)


It would even be worse with the rumored iphone 8.

posted on 30 May 2017, 05:56

11. cmdacos (Posts: 710; Member since: 01 Nov 2016)


Don't disagree if the concept renders hit the mark.

posted on 30 May 2017, 05:43

5. Alter (Posts: 133; Member since: 25 Mar 2016)


Sounds expensive.

posted on 30 May 2017, 14:57

73. AmashAziz (Posts: 1507; Member since: 30 Jun 2014)


It is if 700$ is what you consider as expensive.

posted on 30 May 2017, 05:50 1

8. surethom (Posts: 967; Member since: 04 Mar 2009)


With a Full screen display does that mean this is lacking the Number one feature, LED Notification light????

posted on 30 May 2017, 05:58

13. Bankz (Posts: 2023; Member since: 08 Apr 2016)


How will fullscreen apps look with that camera hole on the screen?

posted on 30 May 2017, 08:48

59. juandante (banned) (Posts: 679; Member since: 23 Apr 2013)


I can perfectly understand not everyone wants this sh!t of notification lights. It wakes you up in the night, informs everyone that you have a message from XXX application pending, and probably doesn't consume much battery but gives the impression it is.
But I agree also that options are important and that anyone can disable it, but still, not a big loss.

posted on 30 May 2017, 05:51 3

9. ancellim (Posts: 38; Member since: 24 Mar 2014)


It has no headphone jack, no buy no matter how good it is.

Please no debate about jacks and adapters, got enough of that.

posted on 30 May 2017, 06:27 5

25. jellmoo (Posts: 2040; Member since: 31 Oct 2011)


If you don't want a debate on the matter, why bother posting your opinion?

posted on 30 May 2017, 06:34 6

28. trojan_horse (Posts: 5018; Member since: 06 May 2016)


The v
comment section is meant for users to post their opinion... That doesn't necessarily mean they want to debate or argue when they post!

posted on 30 May 2017, 06:51 2

33. jellmoo (Posts: 2040; Member since: 31 Oct 2011)


That's what it's for though. Stating an opinion and closing the discussion on it straight away is pointless. Why even post the initial thought? At that point it's just thread clutter.

posted on 30 May 2017, 06:53

35. Bankz (Posts: 2023; Member since: 08 Apr 2016)


^This

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