It was only a few months ago when Android co-founder Andy Rubin teased a new smartphone coming to the market. Towards the end of May, the Essential PH-1 was announced, offering a nearly bezel-less experience and the ability to accept modular accessories, with the first being a 360-degree camera. Now, prior to its launch, the firm has suffered a bit of a blow, losing its VP of marketing, Brian Wallace.
It was confirmed to Business Insider on Friday that Wallace had moved on from Essential, becoming chief marketing officer at i.am+, a company that was founded by musician Will.i.am. While it is not uncommon for high-level employees to move on and change positions, Wallace's departure comes at a time when the firm has yet to ship its first product.
It was during Recode's annual Code Conference that Rubin discussed how he "wouldn't be taking reservations if it wasn't going to ship in 30 days or so". As we head into the tail-end of July, we have yet to see a product ship, leaving many to wonder what could be holding up the smartphone. While it is not all that uncommon for start-ups to run into issues, the problem with essential is that it has remained silent through its social media channels, unable to give users a proper update.
While the delay and recent departures aren't a good look, this is a company that is just starting and has a vast amount of funding, and shouldn't be an indicator that an implosion is imminent.