The Essential Phone was one of the first Android-powered devices with a notched display. It came with the notch settings feature on Android Oreo which allowed users to customize who each app used the notch and status bar area. These settings were removed with the Android 9 Pie update that was recently released for the handset. The Essential Phone notch settings may return with a future Android Pie update.
The Essential Phone was also the first device other than Google’s Pixel handsets to get Android 9 Pie soon after the company announced its public release. The notch settings that were present in Oreo weren’t included in the Android 9 Pie update for this device.
An Essential representative has revealed on Reddit that the notch settings could return with a future update. “It will take a bit of work since it is not a 1:1 code transfer from 8.1 to 9.0 given google changed the notch logic so a portion of the code will have to be re-written,” he said.
The representative added that it likely won’t be possible with the next security release since the code will need to be re-tested for stability. At least Essential Phone owners can rest assured now that the settings which made the notch manageable on their handset will return in due course.