New details on the Essential Phone emerge — and they look positive.
Essential is getting a whole lot of attention after it finally announced the Essential Phone with its pretty excellent-looking hardware and unique features. The only issue for those excited about it is that it still isn’t actually for sale — there’s a “reserve” system in which you can drop the required $699 to get on the list for one when it ships, with no actual guarantee of when that’ll be. We also have a limited number of details on how the software works.
Thankfully for us, the company’s founder Andy Rubin gave some great hints as to how Essential plans to sell phones in the near future, and what his vision is for the Phone’s software in his interview at the Code Conference on May 30 (embedded below).
First off, Rubin says that the plan is to ship out reservations “within 30 days” — now he didn’t put his foot down in saying that they will ship out by the end of June, but that’s the goal at least. If he is able to accomplish this, that’d be a pretty good sign that Essential can actually make and ship its first hardware in short order. Many phone startups have run into issues with shipping at scale, though, so we won’t jump for joy until boxes are actually hitting doorsteps.
‘I’m going to try as hard as I can to have a pro-consumer product where you get to decide what’s on your phone.’
After being pressed by the interviewer Walt Mossberg, Rubin also expanded on his plans for Essential to move beyond online-only sales and into the typical carrier and retail channels by which roughly two-thirds of smartphones are sold in the U.S. The goal, Rubin says, is to move into carrier