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Essential PH-1 Smartphone Review & Comments

BigD18t

Distinguished Member
Your review says it uses a Snapdragon 435 but it should be 835.
 

steeled

Novice Member
I thought the Snapdragon processors were made by Qualcomm? The review says Intel makes them. (I bet Intel wishes it did make them though :) )
 

Higgers

Active Member
The two phones most recently reviewed at the time of writing are the Essential PH-1 and the Samsung Galaxy Note 9. The PH-1 came out a year ago, isn't waterproof, doesn't support wireless charging, has no headphone jack, no microSD slot and a mediocre camera. Yet both the PH-1 and the Note 9 receive 8/10.

Further down the list of reviews is the Galaxy S9 which, although the S9 and Note lines have been very similar for the past two years, receives a 9/10. The phone reviews seem to lack consistency.
 

Office Dog

Novice Member
The two phones most recently reviewed at the time of writing are the Essential PH-1 and the Samsung Galaxy Note 9. The PH-1 came out a year ago, isn't waterproof, doesn't support wireless charging, has no headphone jack, no microSD slot and a mediocre camera. Yet both the PH-1 and the Note 9 receive 8/10.

Further down the list of reviews is the Galaxy S9 which, although the S9 and Note lines have been very similar for the past two years, receives a 9/10. The phone reviews seem to lack consistency.
For the purposes of context, Essential confirmed 'direct-to-UK' (and also France, Germany and Japan) shipping in late spring 2018. The phone then became MQA and TIDAL Masters-capable in June 2018. So, its relevance, particularly to music-focused users/listeners, has significantly changed since its original US debut.
 

Jonny Ware

Standard Member
I thought that Essential had stopped producing the phone? Sorry my confusion they have cancelled the follow up phone.
 

Steven

Senior Moderator
The two phones most recently reviewed at the time of writing are the Essential PH-1 and the Samsung Galaxy Note 9. The PH-1 came out a year ago, isn't waterproof, doesn't support wireless charging, has no headphone jack, no microSD slot and a mediocre camera. Yet both the PH-1 and the Note 9 receive 8/10.

Further down the list of reviews is the Galaxy S9 which, although the S9 and Note lines have been very similar for the past two years, receives a 9/10. The phone reviews seem to lack consistency.
I don't personally agree with inserting "not everyone wants a stylus" on the Note 9 review but it's perhaps best to assume / infer the scores should be read in context according to the category of phone.

So a family run around getting 8/10 does not make it equivalent to the convertible getting 8/10. Different strokes for different folks.

Also some annual upgrades may technically improve on last year's model but the score may reflect the improvement is too incremental

Cheers
 

adeyman

Standard Member
I bought this phone when it's price was reduced on Amazon US, all in with shipping and duty I paid ~£270. Keep in mind that, other than the screen, this phone is...Essentially...the same spec as the Pixel2 and the Galaxy S8.

The only niggle I have is that the screen isn't very sensitive and so if your touch is a bit light it will sometimes not register it. But other than that I am really happy. The community is great and the developers at Essential are active members of it and really listen to people.

It got a bad rep for the camera but it seems fine to me and I followed guides to install a port of the Google camera app because the community recommended it as an improvement and to my eye with that app it produces photos as good as my wife's S8 - often better in low light.

I think it is a bit unfair to Essential to say 'It proceeded to update to Android 9 very shortly after the official version became available' when it released the very same day as the Pixel phones. It even got the September security updates before the Pixel phones.

The company's future seems a bit uncertain at the moment given the poor sales of their debut phone but if they do continue I'll definitely be a loyal customer because for me they're doing it right - listening to customers and truly supporting the device.
 

Higgers

Active Member
I don't personally agree with inserting "not everyone wants a stylus" on the Note 9 review but it's perhaps best to assume / infer the scores should be read in context according to the category of phone.

So a family run around getting 8/10 does not make it equivalent to the convertible getting 8/10. Different strokes for different folks.

Also some annual upgrades may technically improve on last year's model but the score may reflect the improvement is too incremental

Cheers
I you deliberately choose to ignore the differences I highlighted such as wireless charging, expandable storage, etc then maybe the difference between a PH-1 and Note 9 is incremental. Or maybe some of those features are the "superfluous features" referred to in the review with no examples given.
 

Steven

Senior Moderator
I you deliberately choose to ignore the differences I highlighted such as wireless charging, expandable storage, etc then maybe the difference between a PH-1 and Note 9 is incremental. Or maybe some of those features are the "superfluous features" referred to in the review with no examples given.
My post was actually agreeing with you but trying to think outside the box. Don't pick a fight in an empty room :cool:
 

jimborae

Active Member
Still no mention of a highly important feature for audiophiles, considering it has no headphone jack, LDAC!!! This like many "Pie updated" phones has Sony's proprietary LDAC bluetooth codec which is way better than APT-X HD. I also mentioned this after the podcast review.

Also with the price dropping to as low as £240 imported with taxes paid via Amazon this phone is a complete no brainer buy when it's that cheap. It's a real shame that Essential have stated that there will be no follow up to the PH-1.
 

Higgers

Active Member
My post was actually agreeing with you but trying to think outside the box. Don't pick a fight in an empty room :cool:
I don't see which part of your post agrees with anything I stated. I'm not starting an argument, that's your interpretation I'm afraid.
 

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