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Essential promises that its second phone’s camera will not be hot garbage

Essential Phone

  • In a recent interview, Essential confirmed the Essential Phone sequel will feature an improved camera experience.
  • Released in August 2017, the Essential Phone has been knocked for its subpar cameras.
  • Updates have somewhat improved matters, but the camera performance remains lackluster.

On one hand, the Essential Phone‘s hardware delivered in spades when it first launched and still holds up well today. On the other, the camera was a dumpster fire that got slightly better over time.

The good news is that Essential knows that and promised that its second phone will have a much better camera.

That is according to Linda Jiang, Head of Industrial Design at Essential. Speaking with Business Insider, Jiang admitted that the Essential Phone’s camera wasn’t perfect.

“In general, one thing that we got hit hard with was the quality of our camera, and we’re really looking forward to improving that with our next-gen, making sure that we’re listening to our customers and their pain points,” Jiang said.

Putting things more plainly, Jiang also said that Essential will make the camera “better for you.”

However you take that, Essential has its work cut out to satisfy those let down by the Essential Phone’s camera experience. We were among those that found the camera processing to be lackluster, HDR to be laughable, and low-light performance to be disappointing.

Updates delivered some small improvements, and the eventual price drop to $500 made the camera experience more tolerable. Unfortunately, they could not salvage what was and still is an average camera.

Whether the software or hardware is to blame is up for debate. What is not debatable is how good the competition has gotten with its smartphone cameras. Phones like the Samsung Galaxy S9, Google Pixel 2, and Huawei P20 Pro feature cameras that are a step above the rest.

The bottom line is that Essential cannot afford to make the same mistake with the Essential Phone sequel. If the company hopes to return to top-tier pricing for its upcoming flagship, the camera must deliver the goods.


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