Essential is a unique case in the smartphone world. It was a startup smartphone company started by one of the founders of Android: Andy Rubin. The company went on to become a unicorn startup: a company whose valuation broke $1 billion even before it made any revenue.
Initial reception of the companys first phone last summer was mostly positive. The phones hardware was uniquely made of a titanium frame with a ceramic back plate. It was also the first company to notch the display even before Apples infamous screen horns on the iPhone X. For the record, Essentials notch was the least intrusive implementation of the front-facing camera and necessary sensors.
As the reviews came out, there was a common theme: the camera did not perform well. Since its launch, the company has been working hard to update the PH-1s software to the latest version and currently sits on Android 8.1. A host of improvements to the camera have also been made, but they werent enough to bring the Essential phones camera up to par with other 2017 flagship cameras like the Galaxy S8, LG V30, or the Pixel 2.
Essential told Business Insider that the company has heard the complaints about the camera loud and clear and is working towards a better camera.
In general, one thing that we got hit hard with was the quality of our camera, and were really looking forward to improving that with our next-gen, making sure that were listening to our customers and their pain points Were going to make it better for you. Linda Jiang, head of industrial design at Essential
Essential didnt say anything more about the PH-1s successor. It also didnt say if we can expect another summertime launch Essential has only released one phone and we dont know if it will be an annual affair or if the company has some other time frame in mind. Otherwise, Essential is looking to develop new coatings and textures of the ceramic plate to make the phone less slippery and less fingerprint-y.