Andy Rubin’s Essential Is Now a ‘Unicorn’, Valued at Over $1 Billion Without Shipping Anything

Andy Rubin, the founder of Android, took the tech world by storm when he introduced his own smartphone, dubbed the Essential Phone, in May. Rubin’s new phone company has become the talk of the town yet again as it has now been termed as a “unicorn,” a startup that is valued at over $1 billion.

While a valuation of over a billion dollars is not a small achievement for any startup in today’s market, it’s even a much bigger feat for Rubin’s Essential as the company has not yet shipped a single device to customers. According to the most recent update from the company on July 21, the Essential Phone will reach consumers’ hands “in a few weeks.”

When it comes to the latest valuation of Rubin’s company, Bloomberg columnist Tim Culpan reported over the weekend that Foxconn’s FIH Mobile filed for a $3 million investment in Essential for nearly 0.25 percent of the company, which equates to a valuation of $1.2 billion.

 Essential crossing a valuation of over $1 billion, however, doesn’t come as a surprise as the company was previously valued at approximately $997 million in July. Although the latest valuation is good news for Essential as the company is nearing the launch of its first product, it is also placing a lot of pressure on the upcoming phone to make a mark.

The Essential Phone, which has already been significantly delayed since its original June release window as promised by Rubin himself, will come with a 5.71-inch display with an unusual screen resolution of 2560 x 1312 pixels and 19:10 aspect ratio. The handset will run on stock Android 7 Nougat, and will sport a titanium body and a ceramic back while its bezel-less screen is protected by a Corning Gorilla Glass.

Priced at $699, the Essential Phone will also feature a dual camera setup at the back with 13-megapixel RGB + 13-megapixel monochrome lenses and f/1.85 aperture. There will also be an 8-megapixel front camera with an aperture of f/2.2 with fixed focus.

Powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor, the phone will also feature a 3,040mAh battery, a USB Type-C port for fast wired charging, 4GB RAM and 128GB storage capacity.