Essential has been racing to improve the (frankly lackluster) camera software on its phone ever since launch, and now those upgrades are showering affection on the handset's signature 360 Camera attachment. Andy Rubin's outfit is delivering an update that adds streaming live 360-degree video to both Facebook Live and YouTube Live. In other words, that add-on just became much more useful -- you can broadcast your adventures in a VR-friendly format just by clipping a camera to your phone.
The addition could make this one of the better bargains for 360-degree livestreaming, at least if you're looking for a higher-end phone. Now that the price of the Essential Phone itself has dropped to $499, you're looking at less than $700 for a complete streaming setup. Is there a huge audience for this? Probably not, but it helps the phone stand out in a field where having an all-screen design is no longer a novelty.