We have seen a few new entries into the smartphone arena of late. Razer had a good start with the launch of their new Razer Phone. The Razer Phone may seem a bit gimmicky, but it does have a clear purpose. The Essential Phone poses a direct competitor to the Razer Phone, in regards to the price that is.
Well, actually, the Essential phone is no longer the same price as the Razer Phone. You can pick up a brand new unit for $499. That is a $200 drop from its original price. This seams like an absolute winner. But before you get your wallet out, let’s dig deeper into this smartphone to see if it is really worth it.
The Essential Phone. Premium Has Never Been this Cheap
The Essential Phone is a premium smartphone that is currently being developed by a company called Essential Products. One of the big legitimacies of the Essential Phone is that it is designed by Android co-founder Andy Rubin. In order words, this smartphone promises a hardcore Android experience.
The Essential Phone is kitted out with top-tier flagship specs. Its power comes from a Snapdragon 835 chip and a respectable 4GB of RAM. Its 3040 mAh battery is more than sufficient for a smartphone this size and should last a full day of usage. However, This large battery size comes with the sacrifice of a headphone jack.
Sleek, Sexy Design
A definite highlight of the essential phone is its beautiful design. It is a perfect amalgamation of glass, titanium, and ceramic. The shiny ceramic back is glued to the solid titanium sides which seamlessly pass through to the front. Out front is a 5.7-inch QHD screen covered in Gorilla Glass 5.
These materials provide for a rock solid design which also adds a bit of “heft” to the smartphone. In order words, the phone feels heavy in a premium and good way. The super shiny and slippery ceramic back further pushes the Essential Phone away from the usual metal or glass back norm. Only a few other manufacturers opt for ceramic in their phones. Ceramic is a good looking and durable material and it would be nice to see this in more flagship phones.
I have spoken out to Essential Phone owners on Twitter and they are all pretty much happy with the product
That Screen and That Notch and That Camera
Apple may be the undisputed king of the Notch that featured in the iPhone X, But the Essential Phone did it first. In a lot of ways, the tiny notch on the essential phone is a bit more astetically pleasing than the iPhone X. It is only one tiny dot at the top which houses the front facing camera. The system’s software usually accomodates for this and you actually won’t even notice it most of the time.
The screen is on par with other flagships like the LG G6. But what will be heavily missed here is the modern 18:9 aspect ratio. Instead, we are greeted by a weird 19.5:10 aspect ratio.
On the back, you will find a set of dual RBG + Monochrome cameras. Capturing photos in monochrome and color allows for more in-depth, detailed pictures. This isn’t necessarily the case with the Essential Phone. The software side of its camera app does let it down in this department.
So is the Essential Phone Worth Getting Now?
Well upon first glance, yes. I wont lie, when I first saw the offer on Amazon for $499 I was immediately drawn to that $200 saving. This is a great phone at $699 but at $499 it must be a dream come true, right? Well, lets look at some of the drawbacks:-
- Very hard to get replacement parts
- Super stock Android on this device is very buggy
- Camera app is very standard and isn’t on par with other flagships
- Minimal Support
No replacement parts is a huge dealbreaker. The screen is delicately moulded to its titanium body which makes it absolutely fragile. Shattering this screen means game over for your Essential Phone. The lower price and promise of incremental updates may seem like a viable choice for most consumers. But this purchase decision will have to unfortunately come at your own risk.
I have spoken out to Essential Phone owners on Twitter and they are all pretty much happy with the product. There are dozens of 360-degree pics on Instagram. The phones modular setup gives you the option to connect extra peripherals.
The Essential Phone Teardown
Check out my man Zack from Jerry Rig Everything as he takes apart an Essential Phone. There is a lot to learn from this video. Like a simple thing like replacing the battery can break your screen. I very weirdly put together device indeed. Please like the vid and subscribe to Jerryrigeverything for more gadget drop tests and teardowns.
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