The Essential Phone is official:

Discussion in 'Smart Phones and Devices' started by Supersnake, May 30, 2017.

  1. ManofGod

    ManofGod [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Overpriced (Maybe, I only bought one a month ago), sluggish(Nope, this thing is super fast), bad camera(What, it is not a stand alone high end camera? It is a good camera, do not know where the BS surrounding this comes from), privacy concerns(I think you thinking of Hauwei), customer service problems(No idea, never called for help), hyper competitive smartphone market(Nope, just people with a Consumer Reports consumer mentality). Gee I wonder why they did not become the next big thing?

    This phone is fantastic, does not slow down, does not have all the added extra crap you cannot remove, just works but hey, we all want the next shinny thing everyone else tells us we should own. :D ;) (This is the only phone I have found that is a keeper, nothing else even comes close.)

    Edit: Also, why the hell are people recommending the gigantic One Plus 6, which has it's own top heavy launcher on top of Android and non removable junk. Oh well, would not surprise me to see it has Facebook built in, unlike the Essential Phone.

    Yep, I am frustrated because I came from Windows Mobile, which was and is fantastic but, it was killed. Took four different phones before I finally found a good one and now it is being killed off. 5.7 inch screen, high resolution and still quite small overall. If I want a big phone, I will pick up a HP Elite X3 instead.
     
  2. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj Why oh why didn't I take the BLUE pill?

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    The only thing that bothered me about the essential phone was the random stutters. I never got that with the Pixel or the S8 I have now. Overall, it wasn't a bad phone though. Hopefully it lives on through LineageOS.
     
  3. ManofGod

    ManofGod [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Hmmm, I have never personally experienced any stutters, which is something I believe I could not miss. I will not touch Galaxy phones because they primarily support their own stuff first than everyone else after the fact. Also, I will not do a Pixel because I do not want a gigantic phone, although I am sure they are good anyways. Are they barebones Android like the Essential Phone? The Essential phone is extremely fast and even restarts really fast.
     
  4. ChronoReverse

    ChronoReverse Gawd

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    I had the Essential too and had no random stutters. In fact that's one of the things the Essential was known for _not_ having. What it did have trouble with is the touchscreen, so that scrolling would show jitters. Its camera was also below par for 2017 (and definitely nowhere near flagship level).
     
  5. ManofGod

    ManofGod [H]ardForum Junkie

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    How was the camera below par? I have not seen any evidence of this in my normal day to day use. Seriously, what specifically about it is subpar? (I have seen a crap load of folks say this but no one as yet says how.)
     
  6. ChronoReverse

    ChronoReverse Gawd

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    It's pretty obvious in lowlight but even in full daylight pictures, try looking at the picture on your computer screen at 1:1 and it's clear that it's overprocessing the image, destroying details.

    Here's a lowlight sample I took AFTER the camera updates that improved the quality significantly from the way it was at launch:
    Left: stock Essential camera (I actually took this one twice because I couldn't believe how much worse it was)
    Middle: stock Essential monochrome camera
    Right: modded GCam on Essential
    UnMj2x3.png
    https://imgur.com/a/OrR6wpn

    You can see how the regular camera is nowhere near what GCam can do on the same hardware. However, what's even worse is that the quality from GCam processing is in turn nowhere near the quality of my HTC 10 that's older than the Essential!



    I owned the Essential and really liked it, but I think I'm objective when I say that its camera is below par for a phone that billed itself as flagship in 2017. The stock camera is below the quality of the OP5T which in turn was worse than the OP5 (which was also worse than the OP3 but I digress) and I would expect the Essential to at least be at this level to be considered "par".
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2018
  7. ManofGod

    ManofGod [H]ardForum Junkie

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    I have not really experienced that which is probably why I would not have understood what everyone was going on about. Nature of the beast, I guess.
     
  8. ChronoReverse

    ChronoReverse Gawd

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    Well, without a baseline of comparison you wouldn't know I guess. The Essential phone's camera is around Galaxy S5 level I'd estimate. I'm on a Pixel 2 XL now so the difference is really stark.
     
  9. ManofGod

    ManofGod [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Well, you could be right. However, I had a phone that nothing today could even touch, a Lumia 950 with a 20 Megapixel Zeiss optics. Even today, from what I can see, nothing touches that in the phone arena, not even a iPhone 10 nor a Galaxy S9.
     
  10. kirbyrj

    kirbyrj Why oh why didn't I take the BLUE pill?

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    I don't know how you didn't notice, especially when scrolling.

    The Essential phone is the same size as the regular non-XL Pixel. I had both. Obviously, the Essential phone has a bigger screen.

    I'm not knocking the Essential phone as I liked it when I had it. But it's not really of the same quality as the Pixel IMO.
     
  11. Zorachus

    Zorachus [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Curious how the Essential phone is holding up for users ? I don't really plan to get one, but I do think it's a very unique Android phone, and too bad it never was a big winner.

    I think as far as notch phones go, the way Essential did it was near perfect, and I'm surprised Android manufacturers didn't copy this notch, as opposed to copying the larger iPhone X notch.

    And hasn't the Essential team been good on timely updates now ? And even have a Android P beta out for it ?

    I suppose if I could find one cheap, I'd get it for my Wife and ditch the LG G6.
     
  12. Aurelius

    Aurelius 2[H]4U

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    I generally like mine. The main quirk: you really need to use an alternative camera app (I'm using that unofficial port of Google's app) to make the most of it, and there's an odd but very rare quirk with mine where the touchscreen sensors will register phantom taps until I restart the phone. I don't think that's a regular problem with Essential devices, though.

    And yes, there's an Android P beta for it. I'm not using it right now, but it's one of the few phones that can easily make that leap. I may actually get the finished OS in a timely fashion!
     
  13. ChronoReverse

    ChronoReverse Gawd

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  14. Aurelius

    Aurelius 2[H]4U

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  15. Crowbar

    Crowbar n00bie

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    Great prices on amazon (Prime day). 250$ for halo or black one.

    I have been using ph1 for 4 months now, no problems whatsoever..And for 250$, it's just a steal.
     
  16. CHANG3D

    CHANG3D [H]ardness Supreme

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    I thought about getting it to replace my laggy Galaxy S9 with but apparently it phone has problems with TMo signal.
     
  17. Crowbar

    Crowbar n00bie

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    In crowded areas, yes.
    But some users on xda or reddit don't have signal strenght problems in less populated areas on TMo.
     
  18. CHANG3D

    CHANG3D [H]ardness Supreme

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    From everything I've read, it's an issue with the phone jumping to and from band 12 (700MHz). Unfortunately I live in the only major city in America without band 12. So I think the phone will work for me. But still... Assuming Essential survives and keeps its promises, two more years of updates ... (More than Samesuck could promise). Screw it. It's $250. Bought! Now I hope Amazon doesn't cancel my purchase for no stock.
     
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  19. Zorachus

    Zorachus [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Cool :) I think that's a great choice. Keep us up to date on the phone with your review
     
  20. Crowbar

    Crowbar n00bie

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    Good choice mate!
    I have mine for 3 months now.
    Speed, excellent aesthetics, storage, battery life, sound quality...Everything is top notch for me (especially when I bought it for 270$ like new).
    With camera updates, it's now pretty good, since I don't take many pictures, it's more than enough for me. (Gcam from BSG is very good. Rooted solution is better).
    As far as android goes...Huawei P20 Pro is great, Pixel 2 XL as well, but for 250$ (as was on a prime day)...You only loose camera quality, a littte bit of speed, and maybe amoled (though ph1's LTPS LCD is perfect for me. I miss a bit of amoled's contrast and blacks, but that's very minor).

    If you want to dig a bit deeper (unlocking bootloader/flashing magisk for root and modules/flashing custom kernel) let me know, I will pinpoint to exact xda threads for that stuff. Really worth it.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2018
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  21. CHANG3D

    CHANG3D [H]ardness Supreme

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    My Essential phone arrived yesterday, and I just turned it on a moment ago. (Skipped most of the setup for now.) First thing, Android 9.0 Pie update?!? What?!? So evidentially Essential delivered this update the day of release; while it's probably going to take Samsung months if not more than a year to deliver it.

    I haven't started using the Essential yet though. So bear with me.
     
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  22. Aurelius

    Aurelius 2[H]4U

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    Yeah, that was a delight for Pie to be available day-and-date on the Essential alongside Pixel phones. It's not a complete shock given that it's an unlocked, small-volume phone running pure Android, but we'd practically been conditioned to expect Pie weeks or months later, not the same day.

    Not sure how I feel about the gesture interface, other than to say that Apple's approach is more intuitive (in no small part because iOS doesn't need a bottom navigation section the way Android does).
     
  23. ManofGod

    ManofGod [H]ardForum Junkie

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    What is a gesture interface? I have not a clue and I have the 9.0 OS installed on my Essential phone as well.
     
  24. Aurelius

    Aurelius 2[H]4U

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    It basically means having to use finger swipes for key navigation elements.

    On the Essential Phone, for example: swiping up on the home button will go to the multitasking menu, while swiping again brings you to the app drawer. Swiping right opens your previous app. That sort of thing.
     
  25. CHANG3D

    CHANG3D [H]ardness Supreme

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    First day observations on the Essential with Pie. (I only put in my sim card like at 7pm. Everything else was on WiFi.)

    Even with GCam, rear camera still photos aren't up to par coming from iPhone 7/8 and comparing it side by side with a Galaxy S9. But then it's not that terrible. Selfies on the GCam is night and day better than the official camera app. I find the photo snapping to be fast. I find the portrait mode to be fantastic. I haven't had the chance to test taking videos.

    The speaker is horrible sounding. It's really awful. It's so mono and flat. The haptic touch feedback is also horrible. It's even worse than the one on the GS9. I turned the keypress vibrate off cause I can't set the levels. On the GS9 I find that on the lowest setting, the haptic is bearable; default setting is horrible as well. I also turned audio touch feedback off on the Essential. I think so far only LG's G7's haptic is good for Android phones. Wish more folks copy Apple on this.

    The launcher Quickstep lagged hard twice; it recovered once and crashed and had to be force closed the other. But I think it may have to do with G Cloud (3rd party backup/restore solution) syncing because both times it was either making backups or crashed after I denied it from switching default SMS messenger. Uninstalled G Cloud now that my stuff are restored. Compared to my GS9, it restarted by itself twice today... I'll take a launcher crashing and having to be force closed over the whole device restarting... Fuck Samesuck.

    That gesture interface does take some getting used to. I wish the gestures are more multitouch friendly. Such as one finger swipe up is app drawer, and two fingers swipe up is the Recents menu, or however way you program it. Right now short swipe is Recents and long swipe is app drawer. I use app drawer more often than Recents, so I kind of hate seeing Recents every time I want to go the drawer.

    As far as smoothness, the phone is frigging fantastic so far aside from the G Cloud incidences. There are some app launches that I could tell takes longer than on my GS9, but as far as using the phone for texting, camera, and switching between apps (mostly LastPass and some apps I'm trying to log into), it is smooth and possibly better than on the GS9, cause the GS9 runs out of RAM all the time.

    Tomorrow I'll be using the Essential all day. I'm hoping the honeymoon period continues for a long time. I don't think I would even want to root this, unlike the GS9 that I wish I could root with an unlocked bootloader. Once again, fuck Samesuck.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2018
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  26. CHANG3D

    CHANG3D [H]ardness Supreme

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    I thought I downloaded and migrated everything I need, but kept on finding more apps and things I have to log into. But so far so good. Aside from one laggy moment today, where I was watching YouTube and using Google Maps, nothing crashed and the phone hasn't needed to be restarted. But then neither did the GS9 cause I wasn't using it! LOL!

    It's amazing to have a phone that works out of the box. And the GS9 works when no one is using it!

    The thing that still bugs me is the speaker. It's terrible!

    I think I spoke too soon about the GS9 working. Cause the speaker sucks so much on the Essential and it's lack of water high rated resistance, I am delegating the GS9 to being my shower phone. (I have a magnetic mount attached to the wall opposite of the shower with minimal water contact.) And the GS9 had to be restarted after it started to chug while I was browsing YouTube.

    I still need to return this GS9, but I think I would rather jump on a phone with a good speaker or speakers.
     
  27. AltTabbins

    AltTabbins Muh Feelz Got [H]urt Right in the Pussy

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    Why not get a bluetooth speaker? I have one that is water resistant that sits in my bathroom so I can listen to music while im in there.
     
  28. CHANG3D

    CHANG3D [H]ardness Supreme

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    Goddamn. How the hell did I forget about that! Haha!