The Essential PH-1 was supposed to have launched in late June, but the company's founder, Andy Rubin, had announced in an email to those who pre-registered, that things had fallen behind and that the phone would be available in a few weeks. As the company was going through some carrier testing for the Essential PH-1 before it could be launched. Now it looks like the company is really close to launching the device, seeing as the Essential PH-1 is now listed on Best Buy's website, as "Coming Soon". Best Buy has both the unlocked and Sprint variants listed on its website.
Essential's first smartphone is a pretty high-end device, sporting a 5.7-inch Quad HD display, it's powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chipset along with 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. There is no micro SD card slot included, but 128GB should be plenty of storage for most people. There's a 3040mAh battery inside which should keep the PH-1 going all day long, along with dual 13-megapixel cameras on the back and a 8-megapixel camera on the front. It's also running on Android 7.1 Nougat, the latest version of Android that is currently available. Now the Essential PH-1 is a rather interesting smartphone, especially since it has the front-facing camera actually in the display. This means that Essential was able to go virtually bezel-less on this device, and it also makes video calls a bit more natural since you are looking at the display anyways.
The Essential PH-1 is listed as $699 for the unlocked model and $749 for the Sprint model, which is about the price that was expected. Best Buy's website does not mention when it'll be available, but there is an option to be notified once it is available. The Essential PH-1 is the company's first smartphone, and there is a lot of hype surrounding the device, largely because of who is behind the device and that's Andy Rubin. He was the father of Android, so anything he does not – at least in relation to Android – garners a whole lot of attention, as one would expect. Hopefully the Essential PH-1 will be available sooner rather than later.