Will Essential become Nothing?
Remember Carl Pei? He’s one of the co-founders of OnePlus. Earlier this year, he revealed his new venture called Nothing. The brand is a consumer technology company based in London.
Nothing revealed a little about its products. But recently, a report about Andy Rubin transferring his Essential brand to Nothing surfaced.
9to5Google found that Andy Rubin signed over ownership of his defunct Essential to Nothing in January 2021. But the application was made late in 2020.
By transferring ownership to Nothing, the entire Essential brand will be Carl Pei’s Nothing intellectual property.
Even though there’s a transfer of ownership, it may not mean that Carl Pei’s startup is joining the saturated smartphone market.
However, it can indicate that he has the intention to do so in the future.
The Unsuccessful Essential
Andy Rubin’s Essential wasn’t that successful. It was a unicorn. It actually received a valuation of more than $1 billion before it sold one product.
However, Rubin’s wrongdoings while working at Google affected his company’s reputation. It only released PH-1.
Before its collapse, it proposed to release PH-2 and PH3. It was also preparing to sell an extra-slim smartphone sporting a new interface.
But those plans didn’t pan out.
Carl Pei did not disclose anything about Nothing’s plan on Essential.
Despite that, what’s clear here is that the legacy of Andy Rubin’s creation will live in other ways.
Over two dozen workers of Essential became employees of OSOM Products. It’s a company that Jason Keats has founded. Jason was a former head of R&D at Essential. It intended to release a device later this year that focused on Android.
Meanwhile, Carl Pei has a reputation for keeping his plans a secret. He may expose something but just a tiny portion of it to make people salivate for more.
Now, people are more intrigued as to Carl’s plan for the Essential brand. How will he make Nothing interesting by using Essential trademarks?
Perhaps, Carl is thinking to create a smartphone that’s so unique no one can copy it.
It could be that Carl wants to inject some of the OnePlus features into Essential smartphones.
Although he didn’t share his plans on the Essential brand, he did confirm that his company will launch its first wireless earphones. They will be available summer of this year.
He said that he envisions creating an ecosystem of devices so each device can connect to the other. It means that his focus is on the audio department. But it will soon evolve.
Nothing secured a $7 million starting investment. Most of its funding came from well-known players, like Steve Huffman (chief executive of Reddit), Josh Buckley (chief executive of Product Hunt), Kevin Lin (co-founder of Twitch), and many others.
The company has an office in London and it now has 10 personnel.
For now, Carl Pei has to do more tricks to hype Nothing.
If Nothing will indeed enter the smartphone market, what kind of phone will it offer? Do people need a new brand of smartphone?