Thursday, August 10, 2017

Essential Products Receives $300 Million in Funding from Amazon and Tencent

When Andy Rubin left Google, he wasn’t sure about what to do next. The man ended up founding an incubator called Playground Global back in 2015 which received investments from the likes of Google, HP, Foxconn, Redpoint Ventures, Seagate Technology and others. During his time there, he worked on various pieces of technology and then started work on a company he calls Essential Products where the ultimate goal is to help connect and control all the various smart products we have in our lives.

It’s the Essential Home that is planned to solve this with its custom OS that should enable it to connect and control as many smart devices as possible. Mr. Rubin knows that you can’t just have a device like this though, as being able to integrate Essential Home controls deep into a smartphone is required in order to make it seamless. This is where the Essential Phone comes into play and that is where we’re at today. It’s unclear exactly if the device will succeed as it has a monstrous hill to climb if it wants to compete with the likes of Apple, Samsung, Huawei and others.

A couple of months ago we learned that Essential Products was able to obtain $300 million in funding in a second round of funding which valued the startup at $993 million. But it looks like they weren’t done as they’ve been able to bring in another $300 million in funding. The investors from the second round of funding wasn’t disclosed at the time, but we’re told it was both Amazon and Tencent who decided to get in on this third round of funding for Essential Products.

Not only will this help them fund the company’s future endeavors, but it also gives them a couple of retail outlets as well. After this round of funding, it has been confirmed that the Essential Phone will be made available via Amazon’s website and on store shelves at Best Buy. With the company recently announcing they’re in full mass production too, we’re expecting to hear something about the launch as early as next week.


Source: The Wall Street Journal

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