Essential Phone continues to face hurdles leading to delayed launch



Remember Essential? The startup lead by Android founder Andy Rubin? They announced their own smartphone called the Essential Phone (or simply “Phone” if we’re to remove the brand) last May and it’s already experiencing shipment delays. Now, there’s another problem: They just lost one of their top executives.

The Essential Phone

As reported by Business Insider, Brian Wallace, Essential’s Vice President of marketing, has left the company. He’s now the Chief Marketing Officer of, a company founded by (the artist from Black Eyed Peas). Wallace isn’t the first to leave Essential; Andy Fouché, who is listed as the company’s head of communications, also left before Wallace, as confirmed by Business Insider.

Brian Wallace’s profile on Essential’s website

This doesn’t look good for Essential. They have yet to release retail units of the Essential Phone which is priced at US$ 700 unlocked. Pretty expensive for a new brand, but they seem to be confident about it. Not only that, the phone isn’t their sole product, as it comes with modular accessories like a 360-degree camera. The company also announced a smart hub for connected appliances called Home that’s yet to be seen in person.

What’s next for the company? We don’t know, yet. Essential is being tested by the industry and we’re very much interested to see how this will play out. We’re trying our best to secure an Essential Phone if ever it gets released. The 30-day period from the initial announcement is already overdue.

SEE MORE: The Essential Phone is semi-modular, fast, and pricey

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Image credit: Getty Images


Finally! Grab users may now pay directly using GCash

Much-awaited partnership



GCash Grab

Grab Philippines and GCash have finally struck a partnership deal that will make payments on the superapp even easier and more convenient.

Starting February, users will be able to add GCash as a direct payment method on the Grab app, making cashless transactions on food and grocery deliveries, car transport, and other services cashless.

Prior to the collaboration, GCash users could only send money from their account to their GrabPay wallet, and vice-versa, causing a bit of hassle switching in between apps on one’s phone screen.

The partnership also means there will be no more transaction fees unlike before when Grab users have to cash in using their credit or debit cards or linked bank accounts.

Grab customers may also avail of GCash exclusive deals, and even get treats when they pay using the e-wallet.

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Samsung offers $100 for Galaxy S23 preorders

Or the upcoming Galaxy Book



The Galaxy S23 series is coming. Samsung has officially scheduled the first Galaxy Unpacked event of the year for early February, heralding the coming of the Galaxy S23 series. While the flagship series will certainly wow a lot of users, buying one might crumple bank accounts so soon after the holidays. Luckily, Samsung is holding an early reservation promo ahead of the Galaxy Unpacked event.

If you reserve either the new Galaxy S23 or the new Galaxy Book now, Samsung is giving away US$ 50 worth of Samsung Credit. Additionally, users can reserve both devices and get US$ 100 worth of credit for use on any eligible products in the store.

Simply by signing up with your email address, you can use this link to save up to US$ 100 when you shop with Samsung.

The promo ends next Wednesday, February 1, by 11:59pm EST.

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Apple halts development of in-house chip

Broadcom is still in



Apple is currently on a quest to reduce its reliance on third-party components for its devices. For the most part, the company is successful in doing so. Apple Silicon is already an important part of the brand’s identity — with work on more in-house components ongoing. Now, Apple is reportedly pausing development on one of its upcoming chips.

According to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple will delay the development of its in-house connectivity chip. In the meantime, the brand will keep relying on Broadcom for the same components, going into the iPhone 15 series.

To be clear, the paused component only deals with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity. Apple is still developing its in-house modem for 5G connectivity — according to outside reports, at least. While the Broadcom deal will still continue, Qualcomm might still get the axe after Apple develops its replacement chip.

Given the positive response to Apple Silicon, building more in-house components might ultimately work well for the brand. If anything, the company can rest easier by controlling how one of its components is produced.

Besides Apple, other brands are also developing their in-house chipsets to rival component makers like Qualcomm. Google, for instance, is doing relatively well with the Tensor lineup. Additionally, though the upcoming series will rely on Qualcomm, Samsung is currently working to bring the Exynos lineup to match current standards.

SEE ALSO: Apple iPhone 15 Rumor Roundup: Goodbye Pro Max, hello Ultra

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