Essential was quite literally the new kid on the block last year. The startup belongs to Android co-founder Andy Rubin and it launched its first product, the high-end Essential Phone, in 2017. Even though the handset was supposed to be in the same league as a flagship smartphone from Apple or Samsung, it didn’t sell nearly as many units as flagships from either company. New data shows that the company sold fewer than 90,000 units of the Essential Phone last year.

The figure was tweeted out earlier today by IDC’s research director Francisco Jeronimo who mentioned in the tweet that the handset shipped fewer than 90,000 units in the first six months after launch.

It goes without saying that nobody expected the Essential Phone to steal customers from Apple and Samsung on its first attempt but the numbers show that it’s going to be a very difficult task for the company to compete in this space.

The high-end smartphone market is saturated enough as it is and there’s little room for a startup to try and steal customers from established rivals.

It remains to be seen when the company will launch a successor to the Essential Phone and if it’s going to try and target a different section of the market this time around. It has been trying to move more units of its first device with aggressive price cuts but even that’s not going to be enough at this rate.

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