Andy Rubin’s dream venture Essential is now offering a $200 discount on its first smartphone, the PH-1. The makes the handset to be priced at a more affordable $499 compared to its original price of $699, AndroidAuthority reported.

Everything else remains the same, which means there are no compromises to be made owing to the price cut. Also, while $699 happens to be the price that matches with flagship phone stature, a sudden price cut to the tune of $200 at one go has led experts to predict the phone having hit a rough patch already. It has just been this May that the Essential PH-1 was launched and is still fresh in the market.

Essential however isn’t offering any reason to explain the sudden price cut. Fortunately for those who have paid the original price to procure the phone, they are in for a special ‘friends and family’ code which will entitle them to $200 worth of discounts on the Essential store. Users have the option to either spend the amount buying another smartphone or picking up on an accessory. However, for the latter, there is only the 360-degree camera that the company currently offers, which would be virtually free once the code is applied.

As for likely reasons for the company to offer a discount on a phone that is still isn’t even half a year old, experts opine the device might have lost out to competitors operating in the flagship segment. Those include the likes of the Galaxy S8 or the Note 8 while the recently launched Pixel 2 range will also likely make things difficult for Essential. That said, increased competition might also have something to do given that the Note 8 too has recently been offered with a $200 discount.

That is not all as the Essential phone also suffers from a rather lackluster camera which clearly in not in the league of flagship phones. Things have improved post a few updates though there still is a lot more expected. Fortunately, Essential has said they are on it and are committed to provide a best in class camera performance with the PH-1.

Also, while it is too early to predict what sort of an impact the price cut might have on the PH-1’s appeal, what can’t be ignored is that there is a lot going for the handset. Its snappy performance, stock Android feel coupled with the brilliant build quality and exemplary looks might just make the Essential PH-1 a steal at $499.