The Essential Phone’s reviews might be turning out more mixed than Andy Rubin and his team would’ve wanted, but now it’s time for consumers around the US to see the Android smartphone up close. Sprint has announced that beginning tomorrow, September 14th, the Essential Phone will be available for purchase in all of its retail stores, online, and by phone.
So far, the Essential Phone’s “launch” has mostly been the company shipping out orders to customers who’ve purchased it at Essential’s website; the phone hasn’t yet formally launched at retail. Aside from Sprint, Amazon and Best Buy plan to offer the device. I’m not sure Amazon actually knows what’s going on; the listing for the black Essential Phone has gone back and forth on a firm release date and now says it “usually ships within 1 to 2 months.” Best Buy also still shows the device as “coming soon.” Hopefully this Sprint release will get things rolling for other sellers, as well.
We’ve been impressed by the Essential Phone’s well-built design and all-screen display, but its flawed camera is hard to get over in its current state. That’s a tough thing to accurate test out in a retail store, so just keep that in mind when you pick up the phone yourself for the first time beginning tomorrow.