The Essential Phone had a lot of hype surrounding it. But at launch, there were several reasons it turned out disappointing. Now, after a failed Oreo upgrade, Essential is releasing the first beta for Android 8.1 Oreo.
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Essential’s first attempt to bring Oreo for the PH-1 was based on Android 8.0, but it included some issues behind the scenes that gave the company reason to pause on the public rollout.
Instead, Essential opted to skip directly to Android 8.1, and the first beta is now available for download or over OTA. The update brings the phone up to the latest version of Android, with February’s security patch and lots of minor fixes. The company points out that dynamic calendar and clock icons are now supported on the device, but the update also fixes one of the phone’s biggest problems.
Essential says in a tweet that a beta patch is in place in this update for scrolling issues that have plagued the phone for months. The patch won’t fix everything, nor is it final, but it’s great to see the company acknowledging this issue.
If you’re using an Essential Phone,Android 8.1 is available for download now and is also rolling out via an OTA for users already on the beta program.