Android Co-Founder Andy Rubin's Essential Team Reportedly Building AI-Powered Smartphone

Joanna Estrada
October 12, 2018

Andy Rubin's beleaguered phone startup Essential is rumored to be working on a phone that is anything but your standard flagship. Now, its creator and inventor of Android is reportedly on a mission to destroy Android phones as we know them to eliminate our screen addition.

According to a new report from Bloomberg's Mark Gurman, the new device isn't like any other smartphone - it's created to have a small screen and uses voice commands as the main interaction point. This new Essential-branded phone is said to "mimic a user" and will auto-respond to messages, cutting the amount of effort one has to make by to usually reply to any kind of message using a handset. It's being described as an AI-powered device with a design that "sounds a bit like the sci-fi movie Her". As a result, Essential expects to market the product as a complement to people's smartphones or as a phone for those who want to spend less time tethered to their screens. Although Essential is yet to confirm any of the aforementioned speculations, Rubin did drop a hint about such a device a year ago in an interview with Bloomberg. He was even accused of sexual misconduct when working at Google, followed by him putting the company up for sale.

Would you look at an AI focused Essential phone? Rubin imagined it as a single hub with its own voice-command technology that could run queries through Siri, Alexa and Google Assistant - a feat that would likely require cooperation from three competitors.

Essential is expected to show the device off as early as CES 2019 in January, with the first prototype expected to be finished by the end of this year.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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