Only two days now, even less in fact, before Samsung takes the wraps off its latest flagship. For some reason, Andy Rubin, the father of the most popular OS in the world, chose this time to tease his company’s first smartphone on Twitter where he wrote, and I quote, “I’m really excited about how this is shaping up. Eager to get it in more people’s hands…”
Little is known about this brand new company’s brand new device, and by little I mean nothing. Not even whether it will be an Android smartphone or a smartphone with a new OS. But the image that Rubin posted is rather telling. The device seems to have an edge to edge display that looks like LG G6 meets Xaiomi MIX. Samsung is also offering a similar but curved display and Apple is also rumored to be taking the bezel-less route with the next iPhone.
The picture doesn’t reveal much else except what seem to be familiar status bar icons for the battery, LTE, and Time. Looks like some sort of Android smartphone to me. But nobody can surely claim that from a picture of the status bar icons. There also seem to be two buttons on the side. Usually, it’s a Power button and Volume rockers but if you notice, both the buttons are of the same size. A pair of Volume rockers? Maybe just a sim tray that’s sticking out.
The device also looks rather small in that hand. I have never seen a hand that can make a normal size (by today’s standards) smartphone look small. Earlier reports in January claimed that the device would feature a display larger than 5.5 inches with a 3D Touch like pressure sensitive tech. Thee reports also said it could be made out of premium materials. A metallic case with a ceramic back to be exact. And it may even have some sort of modularity or at least proprietary magnetic connectors for charging and hardware accessories.
The fact that Rubin has teased the smartphone now could mean it will see the light of the market within this year. And he’d be wise to make that event fall somewhere after the Galaxy S8’s launch and before the iPhone 8’s launch. After that, the Galaxy Note 8, the next Pixel, and LG V30 will be making appearances and that’s never a good time for a non-established brand.
The question is will Rubin’s company manage to make a bigger impact than the Google Pixel did? Because in my opinion, Essential will only be as much in competition with Apple or Samsung as an ant is with an elephant. No one can tell what a company can potentially achieve in the long run but at least when Essential launches its first smartphone, I don’t think big names like Samsung, Apple or even Huawei will care as much.
What do you think? Can Essential make an entrance into the smartphone world like OnePlus did?