Essential Is Shutting Down, 'GEM' Phone Not Coming


Essential has announced that it is shutting down. The company has been developing a rather radical 'GEM' phone, and that device is not coming either as a result of this, of course.

That also means that your Essential PH-1 will stop getting updates in general. In its press release, Essential said that it has "no clear patch to deliver" its GEM phone to customers. That is listed as the main reason to cease operations.

The company was founded back in 2015 by the 'father of Android'

As most of you know by now, Essential was founded back in 2015 by Andy Rubin. Those of you who still do not know who Andy Rubin is, he's also referred to as the father of Android. He is the guy behind Google's Android operating system.


The Essential PH-1 was the company's first smartphone, and its sales were abysmal. Its price dropped quite a bit in months after the phone got launched, as it was set pretty high at first. That didn't help much with the phone's sales, though.

The Essential Home was also supposed to launch, as it was detailed with the Essential PH-1, but that never happened. That was supposed to be Essential's smart hub.

As consumers were waiting for some more info on the Essential PH-2, Andy Rubin was hit by a scandal. That scandal managed to hit Essential as a whole pretty hard as well, which is understandable.


Andy Rubin was accused of sexual misconduct while he was at Google. That accusation came to light in 2018, and managed to shake everything up.

After things got settled a bit, Andy Rubin shared some info regarding the 'GEM' phone that the company was working on. That device was extremely narrow, it looked like a remote controller with a touchscreen.

Essential is shutting down after less than five years of existence

If you were interested in this phone, you'll be glad to know that Essential shared some video content in its press release. You can take a closer look at the device, even though it will never become a reality.


In those videos, there are four of them, you can see how e-mail, calendar, Instagram, Spotify, and maps are working on this device. You can also see the keyboard that was supposed to be included on board.

Some users were quite excited about the device, but unfortunately, it never came out. That product is now dead in the water, as well as Newton Mail. Current Newton Mail users will have access to the service until April 30, 2020, said Essential.

There you go. If you were looking forward to the Essential PH-2 or the GEM phone, well, you're out of luck. Essential is shutting down after less than five years of existence.