Carl Pei, the former OnePlus co-founder who left the company, recently announced his own venture, “Nothing.” The company saw $7 million round in seed financing in December 2020 that included notable tech leaders and investors including the likes of Tony Fadell, Casey Neistat, and more. Now, a new report reveals that Nothing has acquired Andy Rubin’s one-time smartphone brand Essential.
The latest development comes from 9To5Google, which found recent filings at the UK Intellectual Property Office showing that former Android founder Andy Rubin has sold his Essential brand to Carl Pei’s Nothing Technologies Limited. The application was made in November, and the process is already completed as of January 6, 2021. Now, the existing trademarks, logo, and the Essential brand are the intellectual property of the Nothing brand.
There is still no concrete information on what the Nothing brand is planning to launch for the consumers. According to some speculations, the brand could launch an array of wireless earbuds with a wider focus on smart home technology. For the unaware, Essential was said to be working on a Home smart hub and speaker with Ambient OS. However, it didn’t see the daylight. Essential also has numerous patents relating to “Voice setup instructi ons” and “voice-enabled home setup.” These could help Nothing with their focus on products for smarthomes.
This acquisition doesn’t mean that Nothing will launch a smartphone. However, it could be planning to do so in the future. It is still unknown if former engineers from Essential have also joined Pei’s Nothing. As of now, the process seemingly only includes the branding and trademark portfolio.
Nothing has already confirmed that it will be releasing its first smart devices in the first half of this year. It plans to release products across multiple categories and build an ecosystem of devices.