Essential Phone Reportedly Coming to UK, Europe and Japan.
Essential’s bezel-less, modular-equipped, stock Android handset will go on sale for $699 in the United States, though there’s no firm release date for the device just yet. In the U.S., Sprint is confirmed to be the exclusive launch partner. The device missed its launch target of June in the States, however today’s FT report quotes Essential COO Niccolo de Masi as saying the release is “imminent.”
High-profile, high-end exclusives are relatively rare in the UK market, with recent exceptions being the Google Pixel on EE, and the OnePlus 3, 3T and 5 on O2. Working with a single, excusive carrier partner has clear benefits for a newcomer like Essential — for one, allowing it to focus its marketing efforts for its inaugural handset with the help of a major player in the local market.
If the U.S. price translates over directly to the UK, Brits can expect to pay around £640-650 (including VAT) for the Essential Phone. That’s flagshup money for sure, putting it in the same price bracket as the HTC U11 and Sony Xperia XZ Premium.
The Essential Phone is assumed to face strong competition from the likes of Samsung, LG, Google and Apple in the latter half of 2017.