Andy Rubin Pulls The Plug On Updates For Essential Smartphone

Alonzo Simpson
February 14, 2020

Essential was founded by Andy Rubin, the creator of Android. I would have loved to have seen the second Essential Phone make its way to the market (or at least into my hands for a review), but I think that Project GEM was always pre-destined to remain as a concept phone.

Back when Essential launched in 2017, we also read of plans for Essential Home with the Ambient OS.

Talking about the specifications, the Essential Phone features a 5.71-inch LTPS IPS (2560×1312, 504PPI) Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protected display, Snapdragon 835 processor, Adreno 540 graphics processor, 4GB RAM, 128GB internal storage loaded with Android 7.1 Nougat. Rubin has consistently denied any wrongdoing.

Essential posted the news on the company's official blog today, noting that the Essential Phone (PH-1) won't get any further updates. "To the Essential and Newton Mail communities, we offer our deepest thanks for your support and passion for our vision". It promised high-end hardware with clean software.

Andy Rubin has shut down his start-up company Essential Phone. The company had raised nearly $330 million in venture capital funding from investors including Inc., Tencent Holdings Ltd. and Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. Ltd. Access Technology Ventures, Redpoint Ventures and Tencent, the Chinese internet giant, were major investors. He is the guy behind Google's Android operating system. The majority of the world's smartphones are using Android software.

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Essential's inability to innovate is even more glaring considering how much money the company had at its disposal. Walmart and Amazon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

But Vital, that was valued at $1 billion, has fought. But interest evaporated, in part because of the risk associated with Rubin's workplace scandals.

Essential announced the Gem in October 2019, MacRumors noted. The company slashed the price of its first phone after disappointing sales. It also laid off a huge number of employees, from 120 to 50.

Essential has announced that it is shutting down. "But a shareholder lawsuit filed in California Superior Court a year ago called into question the circumstances behind Mr. Rubin's exit from the company", Needleman adds.

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