It’s only been about two months since the Essential PH-1 smartphone went on sale for $699. But Android co-founder Andy Rubin’s new company is already cutting the price by $200.

Now you can pick up an Essential Phone for $499.

Customers who already paid the higher price are eligible for a $200 credit that can be used to buy a phone for a friend or family member or to buy Essential’s 360-degree camera add-on, which is the first (and currently only) modular accessory that you can snap onto the back of the phone to add functionality.

At $699, the Essential PH-1 was kind of tough sell. While it has a striking design and gets decent reviews for specs and performance, it’s a phone from a startup that might or might not still be around in a few years. Buying from Samsung, LG, Motorola or even HTC (which has its own troubles) may seem like a safer bet.

But at $499, the Essential PH-1 is going up against phones like the similarly priced (but out of stock) OnePlus 5 in the enthusiast/niche category.

The Essential PH-1 features a 5.7 inch, 2560 x 1440 pixel display, slim bezels (plus an odd cutout in the screen for the front camera), 4GB of RAM, 128GB of storage, and near stock Android software.

It costs significantly less than either of Google’s Pixel 2 series smartphones, and the phone could get better over time thanks to its support for modular add-ons. On the other hand, the Pixel phones are said to have much better cameras, so there’s that.

Anyway, a $200 price cut certainly makes the first phone from Essential look a lot more attractive, whether or not it’s a truly essential purchase.

via TechCrunch

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18 replies on “Essential Phone price drops to $499”

    1. I could live without the SD card slot and headphone jack, but that hole in the top of the screen would bug the crap out of me.

  1. Greed doesn’t always work.

    They wanted to become Apple from day ONE. Well, Apple had to wait a few years and had a couple of successful products in the market before going sky-high pricing. It also had Jobs and an excellent marketing department, not to mention a totally exclusive OS, to justify that pricing.

    1. Well the equivalent apple phone is $999 and that comes with 64gb. Times have changed. Most flagships are now $800+ and come with 64gb not 128gb. You have to add on an extra $100 for 128gb.

      $499 is a steal with snap 835 and a 18:9 design. Plus the premium build. Shame about the camera. The google camera is supposed to make it much better though.

      But yes they should have just started at $499.

  2. If they started off $499, it would’ve had a successful launch. But now the dust has settled, and the interest has waned…it’s not really impactful.

    Not to mention people complaining that the shipping was slow (low stock/production rate) and the lack of the 360′ Camera on launch. And the lack of IP68 ingress protection and 3.5mm port.

    I think they would’ve been much better holding off the launch to get these issues sorted. But then again, it would’ve meant more competitors with Slim Bezel phones, or attachments.

  3. still only shipping to America… poor… they have missed lots of sales due to that alone.

    1. Try Currently it’s listed for $599 but I guess that in few days it will come down to $499.

  4. I love the phone, but I wish they’d make a lite version for MVNO things like boost/cricket/Metro.. I use MVNO carriers, and $500 is a bit much for my usage..

    1. I’m using Tracfone and used to use Virgin Mobile. WIth Tracfone I am paying the least I’ve ever paid for cell phone service and I actually have 4 phones on Tracfone and still paying less than what I paid each month for 1 phone on Virgin Mobile.

  5. Very nice but I just don’t buy such expensive phones.

    I’ve never paid more than $200 for a phone, and my current main phone was $30 and, aside from the crappy TN screen, it works perfectly fine.

    1. I’m not quite down there with you, but the quality of (a) new phones and (b) 2-year old flagships you can get for between $200-$300 is so good these days that the only reason to spend more than $300 is if you must have all the latest and greatest features of this year’s flagships, and even then the value proposition is dubious.

      1. I agree. 1 year old flagship phones in new condition is the best way to go. My phone is a camera that makes calls and runs apps.

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