Andy Rubin's Essential Phone Flopped In 2017 With Fewer Than 90,000 Units Sold

Essential Phone
The Essential Phone was supposed to make a big splash in the flagship Android smartphone arena last year. After all, it was developed by the father of Android: Andy Rubin. However, shipping delays, early concerns over the phone's camera quality, and a high price tag hampered the Essential Phone's traction right out of the gate.

Now, we're learning that sales of the smartphone have been downright dreadful. From its July 2017 introduction through the end of the year, only 88,000 units were sold according to IDC research director Francisco Jeronimo. To put that in perspective, Apple sold 22.39 million iPhones during the last quarter of 2017 alone.

We knew that Essential was having a hard time with its first product, as we reported back in late September that Sprint has only sold 5,000 of the smartphones since its introduction. Many blamed the high price of the Essential Phone -- $699 -- which put it on par with seasoned rivals, and that it was an unknown with respect to overall quality and the ability to "deliver".

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By October, Best Buy had trimmed $100 off the price of the phone, and in early November, the retailer cut the price to an even more palatable $449. For Cyber Monday, Amazon offered what to-date is probably the best deal seen on the Essential Phone: $399 with a free Essential 360 Camera module. Considering that the 360 Camera retails for $179.99 by itself, this was considered a smoking deal for those interested in a flagship Android smartphone.

The Essential Phone is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 SoC and is paired with 4GB of RAM. The 5.71-inch display has a 19:10 aspect ratio and an unorthodox resolution of 2560x1312. 128GB of onboard storage is included along with a USB-C port with fast charging support, a 3040 mAh battery, 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5.0.