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Essential’s first handset is coming to more markets


It’s hard launching a phone company — something Essential was pretty candid about from the start. Andy Rubin’s latest endeavor got off to something of a slow start, according to outside accounts, but today the well-funded hardware startup is getting ready to add a whole bunch of new markets to its online store.

On Twitter today, the company announced a handful of key additions to its coverage map, including Canada, France, Japan and the U.K. As Engadget notes, availability in some of those markets already exists, but not through the company’s own shop, most notably Canada, where users can pick up the handset via Amazon or Telus.

There are also some country-specific caveats here. Those can be found through the company’s Terms of Service, which notes that the handset is now also available in Germany.

It’s been a slow roll out for the company, but understandably so. It’s not easy starting this kind of endeavor from scratch, even with the $300 million in funding the company managed to drum up. Essential spent its first year primarily focused on its home market, delivering Amazon and Best Buy availability, along with a Sprint deal.

Building distribution channels this time out should ease some of the burden of launching when the time comes to deliver version 2.0.

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