Editor’s note: This article is from Tencent Technology, reviewed by Cheng Xi, and published with permission from 36 氪.Known as “the father of the Android operating system”, Andy Rubin, after resigning from Google because of a sex scandal, founded a smartphone company and even claimed to bring disruption to the smartphone industry again.However, reality was too skinny, and his dream was eventually dashed.According to the latest news from foreign media, Andy’s mobile phone company “Essential” has officially closed and ceased business recently.Poor timing, broader industry issues, and the founder’s involvement in some rather disturbing allegations of sexual misconduct have made it difficult for the company to survive the launch of its first phone.In a blog post on February 12, Essential announced that it would cease operations and shut down.The company stated in the article; “Our vision is to invent a mobile computing model that integrates more seamlessly with people’s lifestyle needs, and despite our best efforts, unfortunately there is no clear way to deliver itTo customers. In view of this, we have made a difficult decision to stop operations and close Essential. “Last October, the company introduced a new product plan, the” Gem Project “, which is a new-sized mobile device.However, this product does not have the opportunity to be mass produced and sold.In the past few years, outsiders have long questioned the survival prospects of Essential.A few years ago, the company launched its first smartphone, but to the surprise of the outside world, Rubin chose competitors such as Samsung Electronics, Apple and other high-end mobile phone manufacturers.The product was priced high and lacked market competitiveness, and soon lost out in the market.The outside world believes that Rubin’s vision for the smartphone market is a bit high.In the past few years, Samsung Electronics and Apple have monopolized the high-end mobile phone market, and the two giants have sufficient capital to maintain the premium of high-end mobile phones, such as Samsung Electronics ’innovation in hardware such as displayScreen and other raw materials business), as well as Apple’s brand influence and strong iOS ecosystem.The high-end mobile phones launched by Rubin have no core competitive advantage.In addition, in the past few years, the fastest-growing smartphone market in the world is not in the high-end mobile phone sector, but a cost-effective Android phone at around $ 200.Chinese companies rely on such cost-effective products, occupying a dominant position in India, Southeast Asia, Russia and other markets, and gain a foothold in the global first group of smartphones.But Rubin is not very interested in such a low-end smartphone market.With the closure of Essential, another software service, Newton Mail, will also end.Newton Mail is a powerful user-centric e-mail client. Essential acquired CloudMagic in 2018 to acquire this product.For this service, the company said that users will still be able to use the Newton Mail service until the end of April this year.Essential’s first smartphone, PH1, is reported to be a 5.71-inch, ceramic and titanium smartphone with a narrow bezel screen.Since the phone has never been as popular as the company hopes, in December 2018, Essential announced that it would stop selling the phone.With the company’s failure, users of PH1 mobile phones will find it difficult to obtain technical support or system updates in the future.It is reported that the company intends to provide a version of the smartphone system software on the code sharing platform GitHub for some technical experts among existing users to modify the code or upgrade themselves.According to foreign media reports, Rubin also participated in an incubator startup project called Playground, but there was news last month that he had sold the company’s equity.The controversial figure Rubin is well known in the technology industry because of the invention of Android.Google later acquired the Android system through the acquisition of Rubin’s companies, and quickly expanded the size of its users.Today, Android has gained 90% of the smart phone market (Apple’s iOS has a 10% share), achieving Microsoft’s monopoly in the personal computer market in the history of Windows.Today, Google is also using Android’s advantages to bundle its Internet services and increase mobile advertising revenue. These actions have also been investigated and fined by the European Commission.Compared to Rubin’s technological invention, he is a very controversial figure.While at Google, Rubin’s Android department was accused of lacking cooperation with other business units, which led to other Google Internet products not being able to take advantage of Android to expand market share. Internal executives have great opinions on Rubin personally.In the end, Google ’s then head, Page, resigned, and Rubin was removed from the position of head of Android, leaving Pichai to be responsible for both Android and Chrome. (Today Pichai is already the head of Alphabet and Google.).Later, Rubin was responsible for Google’s robotics business (Rubin personally has a long-term interest in robots, and the Android logo is also considered a green robot), and has promoted multiple acquisitions.However, Rubin continued to have sexual harassment scandals and triggered investigations inside Google.Faced with outside criticism, Rubin announced his resignation from Google.After Rubin’s departure, Google’s robotics program also failed. The company has sold many acquired robotics companies, including Boston Dynamics, which is familiar to the general public, and sold to Japan’s SoftBank Group.However, it was surprising that the media revealed that Rubin received a compensation of 90 million US dollars when he left the company. This practice has sparked anger and protest from employees inside Google, and has also been met with US public opinion.Universal condemnation.The Rubin compensation incident has also led to tensions between Google management and the workforce.Today, with Pichai as the head of Alphabet and Google, he has launched a rectification campaign to investigate the sexual scandal and sexual harassment of company executives. In the past, Google legal responsibility for the sexual scandal brokePerson, the human resources person in charge of handling sexual harassment complaints is not effective or has been removed from the post.The difficulty of the mobile phone market is well known. In the past few years, the global smartphone market has plummeted, starting to show saturation and a year-on-year decline, and Samsung Electronics and Apple Inc. have all seen a sharp decline in sales.In this context, the global smartphone market has been monopolized by six major companies, namely Samsung, Huawei, Apple, OPPO, vivo and Xiaomi.The market space of companies including Sony, Motorola, HTC, LG and other companies is becoming increasingly narrow.In addition, many second- and third-tier brands have already approached zero market share and have withdrawn from the market.Under the circumstances that traditional smart phone brands are difficult to sustain, the difficulty faced by smart phone startups such as Rubin’s Essential can be imagined.Without major technological or functional innovations, these start-ups would already have lost their place in the similarized smartphone market.In fact, in the Indian smartphone market, as Chinese manufacturers seize the market with high cost performance, according to Indian media reports, almost all smartphone brands in the country are facing bankruptcy. Some brands have begun to engage with Chinese smartphone brands in order to survive.Able to contract OEM business..
“Father of Android” Rubin failed to start another business: Essential mobile phone company will cease operations
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