It was the my biggest gripe with the Essential Phone and the one thing that kept me from making the phone my daily driver. Despite spending my own hard-earned money on the device, I just couldn’t get over the phone’s horrible touch latency. Best described as “scroll lag,” it’s a problem that pops up on some devices every now and then.
Scrolling through the UI be it menus or feeds, the UI trails far behind your finger, completely killing the user experience and making a high-end phone feel like a budget device. It’s rare on flagship devices but apparently still a thing for those that notice it.
The Essential Phone has the unique distinction of also featuring a jittery UI when scrolling slowly, almost as if the frame rate has dropped to 14fps. After being spoiled with the Pixel 2 XL, it was a big enough deal that I boxed up the phone and ended up selling it off.
For those still sticking it out, there is some light at the end of the tunnel. In a recent Reddit AMA, the Essential Phone team not only acknowledged the phone’s strange quirk, but promises that they’re actually going to do something about it. Its worth noting that they’ve actually tried fixing this issue before (to no avail) only this time… it’s personal.
According to Essential, they’re specifically pulling aside resources and have “specifically committed to improving touch and latency” on the PH-1. They’re adding it to the list of improvements we’ll see once that Android 8.1 Oreo update officially rolls out to the phone. The third beta for the Essential Phone is currently in testing and there’s no ETA on when the final version will rollout but we’ll keep you updated.