Essential PH 1 Review, Price And Specification - MobileAppDaily

Essential PH 1 Review

Is It Really a smartphone from future?

Mobile Phone date May 17, 2018 Akash Singh Chauhan


  • High-end specifications
  • The design is something worth paying for
  • Works super fast as contains latest hardware support
  • Runs on Stock Android


  • The camera is not up to the mark and has some issues
  • The battery is quite weak compared to other specifications



In the booming market of the smartphone industry, there is always something new being offered to catch the user's attention. However most of the time there are only promises in order to make the profit. But some of the people really put their efforts to bring something different and high-end features to the users. Andy Rubin, who is also known as the father of Android decided to provide the users a pure Android smartphone under budget compared to other flagship smartphones. The Essential phone or the Essential PH-1 is the first smartphone from the company owned by Andy Rubin. The engineer who worked at Zeiss and Apple has co-founded the Android back in 2003 and sold it to Google in 2005. Afterward, he left Google and enjoyed his retirement until the idea of Essential smartphone strikes through his mind. He believes that these high-end devices can be delivered to the major portion of the users by customizing them further. 

The phone offers a dual camera with 13MP lens for low light images

There is a Snapdragon 835 chipset with 4GB RAM

Essential PH 1 took the mobile industry by the storm after Andy Rubin announced it, however, it did not make much success after the launch. In order to know the phone’s performance and the flaws that restrained it from becoming the next big thing in the mobile industry, we have reviewed the phone. 

Essential PH 1 design and display

  • Premium design with aluminum frame
  • Ceramic back having a mirror surface
  • 5.7 inch LTPS IPS LCD display
  • 84 percent screen to body ratio

After Andy Rubin showed up after being underground for years he has something called the future gadget in his hands. He described the essential phone as the gateway to future that includes the premium looks, with no branding, logo or bloatware and the instant Android update for two years along with high-end specs. The Essential phone was considered as the dream smartphone for most of the consumers struggling with contemporary devices. The Essential PH 1 comes titanium frame that covered the phone and makes it look taller than it actually is. The ceramic back with the mirror finishing made me fall in love with the phone’s appearance. The size of the Essential phone is perfect for the average hands to hold and the corners design makes the phone’s grip amazing and you feel like you are holding something precious. The fingerprint sensor is placed well at the back which is easy to reach for unlocking the phone.

Essential PH 1 comes with the edge to edge display that adds a royal look to the front which is covered with the glass. The Essential phone comes with 5.7 inch LTPS IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen that offers 1312 X 2560 pixels resolution. The huge screen of the phone is possible due to the 84 percent screen to body ratio. Along with this, the Andy Rubin’s phone offers the multi-touch capability up to 10 fingers. The minimum bezel of the Essential PH 1 makes the screen look much big and you will enjoy the display while playing any video or going through images. The high pixel resolution and LTPS display make the display look much attractive than other same price range smartphones.

Essential PH 1 Specifications

  • Octa-core (4x2.45 GHz Kryo & 4x1.9 GHz Kryo) processor
  • 4GB RAM with 128GB internal storage
  • No microSD slot
  • Dual 13MP rear camera, 8MP front camera
  • 3040 mAh battery
  • Android 7.1(upgradable to Android 8.1)

As the Essential phone was launched to provide all the latest available technology to the consumers, it posses high-end specs. In order to make the phone lighting fast, the maker has incorporated a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chipset which is the latest available in the market. Along with this, the CPU of the Essential phone comprises an Octa Core (4x2.45 GHz Kryo & 4x1.9 GHz Kryo) processor to power the phone. The processing unit of the phone is coupled with the 4GB of RAM that comes with 128GB of internal storage. However, there is no microSD card slot on the Essential phone that means the memory isn’t upgradable. Along with this, the essential PH 1 comes with a dual rear camera of 13MP that is mounted at the top left side of the back panel with the vertical orientation. The camera of the Essential phone is accompanied by a dual LED tone flash for better quality images. The camera comes with the features including phase detection and laser autofocus, face detection and HDR for amazing snaps. The front camera of the posses an 8MP lens the is capable of capturing high-quality selfies. In order to offer an outstanding sound output, the Essential PH 1 comes with a stereo speakers which is placed at the bottom with grills. 

The phone has been equipped with a 3040 mAh Li-Ion non-removable battery that I personally think is quite low for the Essential phone with such specifications. However, the battery works quite well compared to other phones with similar specs. In addition, the phone runs on the stock Android that is the purest form of the Android. The major idea behind the Essential PH 1 was to offer the untouched Android OS to the users. The Essential phone comes with Android 7.1(Nougat), which is upgradable to Android 8.1 (Oreo) with the upgrade guarantee up to 2 years. 

Essential PH 1 Performance

  • Works fast, no issues with processing speed
  • The camera app has some issues

Honestly, we had the high expectation with the phone after listing to the Andy Rubin’s promises. First I will talk about the phone design because that is what makes it look really like an Essential PH 1 that you should have, The phone’s grip is amazing you feel the premium work done on the Essential phone in your hand. In addition, the mirrored surface makes it look more costly. The essential phone is seriously fast you will be amazed by the processing speed of the phone. I also switched between a number of apps and open several apps at the same time to make it difficult for the phone. But, it performed smoothly without being lowering any of the performance metrics. Talking about the camera, that is something which I think needs improvement. However, the Essential phone is able to take the low light images but it seems that some things could be improved like autofocus and stability. I also found that the camera is slow sometimes and images contained noise that hurts the image quality. The overall experience with the phone was good, as it runs on Stock Android the software part does not have any flaw, however, the camera and some user interface feature needs improvement. 

Where to buy: MSRP $500.00

Akash Singh Chauhan

Akash Singh Chauhan is a senior writer at MobileAppDaily and he mainly covers all the latest happenings and tweaks in mobile app technology. Being an Engineering graduate he is always compelled to the technology and tries to discover new trends in the tech world. Along with any tech news he also never misses a single episode of ‘Dragon Ball’.

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