Gang I’m in the first 24 hours of my experience with the new Essential, yep it is opening day and I can’t wait to grow into this device. Just so you and I are level set and you understand the context of my blog comments over the last several years I have been a Samsung Note loyalist enjoying the experience of what the device's form factor and Samsung UI has to offer. The Essential is a bit of a departure from the norm for me so I thought I would start with a few thoughts on what the typical Android user will want to think through as they onboard with the Essential.
Visual Voicemail- This is my first foray into a pure Android device with no overlay, boot strapped apps, or preloaded content so it is new territory to not have a few of the basics like Visual Voicemail (VVM). I’m a fan of the function and I’m glad to say there are several options out on the Playstore to download. I’m trying out Youmail as I write this post, after I have a couple of days with the VVM application I will post a comment here and let you know what I think of it. The tutorial paints a good user experience and robust assistant capabilities so I am eager to see if it lives up to the billing.
Fingerprint Scanner- Happy to report that the finger print scanner works exceptionally well and I would highly recommend using it for security features and the device’s unlock mode. If bad experiences with prior finger print readers discourage you from using it on the Essential don't and give it a fair shake, so far I’ve performed multiple unlock attempts and have not had one instance fail recognition. As an added bonus the scanner location makes it ultra-convenient to use while holding in one hand, simply register your pointer fingerprint and easily access the reader location. (don’t forget to register both pointers, never know which hand you will be using. . . )
Charging Cables- You guessed it, the new C standard. Anyone coming from a year or older device will most likely have an array of chargers that leverage the micro-USB standard. The Essential, like many of the newly released Android based flagship devices, carries the new type-C plug meaning you will need to pick up a pack of new cables. The improved capabilities with the new plug set makes the hassle worth it and there are reasonably priced multi-packs available online so you your wallet won't take a huge hit.
Wireless Charging- If you have existing Qi based wireless unfortunately the device is not compatible with these docking stations. A bit of a bummer if you have a few in your arsenal but the phone is not without wireless charging capabilities, Essential’s webpage highlights an upcoming docking station designed for wireless charging. I’ve registered my email for product updates, if any news is released in a relevant time period of this post I’ll update below.
Cases- Tons of vinyl skin options available online but no cases as of this posting. The device construction is crazy strong with the use of titanium and ceramics so a case might not be as much of a necessity but I, like most users, have been conditioned to take protective measures on these expensive little machines. I ordered a vinyl skin for the back of the device and will be keeping an eye out for attractive case options. I may step out of my comfort zone and keep the device nude if it wears well. . . we'll see how long my anxiety allows that to last.
Let me know if you have any questions by posting a comment below, in the weeks to come I will provide more posts my thoughts on the Essential's construction and key features. Stay tuned and always appreciate community engagement!