Essential's $200 camera now costs $19

Essential put its 4K 360 camera up for sale overnight on a massive discount – as if they were having a fire sale. OH MY GOD IT'S A FIRE... sale, if you know what I mean. This camera requires the assistance of the Essential Phone PH-1 to work, and does not do much of anything on its own. With the Essential Phone PH-1, this becomes one of the most interesting smartphone accessories on the market today.

The Essential Phone 360 Camera is two cameras combined. One camera sits on one side of the device and an identical camera sits on the other. There's no flash involved, and there's not really any moving parts. Instead, this is a device whose controls depend on what the Essential Phone PH-1 offers right out the box.

OF NOTE: Essential calls this the "world's smallest 4k 360 camera" because there's really nobody stopping them from doing so. Is a camera really a camera if it's not able to do anything without the assistance of a separate piece of equipment? If it is, Essential has indeed made such a device, and retains that crown to this day.

This device is around 67mm tall, 32mm wide, and 12mm thick. It weighs just under 35grams, and comes with its own little fabric pouch. The camera attaches magnetically to the Essential Phone PH-1 with several pogo-pins. Once the camera is physically touching the PH-1, the phone can make use of the camera.

Both sides of this camera have 12MP fisheye imagers with lens apertures of f1.8 and field of view of 210-degrees. Video resolution ends up being 360-degree UHD (3849 x 1920 pixels) and 30fps. The sound is pretty cool too, rolling with 4x microphone input in 3D in an "ambisonic tetrahedral arrangement."

Again, this device originally cost $199, and it costs $19 right this minute, as I'm about to publish this article. There's no current timeframe stated for the price sticking to this point, but we must assume it won't last forever.