Set up your Essential Phone

Congrats on getting an Essential Phone. And welcome to the Essential community. Here’s how to get started setting up your new PH-1 running Android Nougat 7.0 or later.

Before you get started

Want to bring your stuff over from your old phone to your new PH-1? Learn how to move your content from an iPhone or another Android phone:



Let's Go

To begin, tap Let's Go on the initial startup screen.

To change the language, tap globe.png. If you have vision impairments and need a bit more assistance, tap Vision Settings eye.png to adjust Accessibility and other display options.

Insert your SIM card

This connects your Essential Phone to your mobile carrier so you can make calls, sends texts, browse the web, and more.

If you don’t have a SIM card available, continue the setup over Wi-Fi. But you can’t use any of your carrier features until you insert a valid SIM card.

If you’re unsure of how to install your SIM card, check out our Support post.

Setup as a new or copy data

Tap Set up as new to set up your Essential Phone as a new device.

If you’re setting up your PH-1 from an iPhone, another Android device, or a cloud backup, tap Copy your data.

Connect to a Wi-Fi network

Using a Wi-Fi network will provide the fastest experience when setting up your PH-1

You can also use your mobile network, but it will affect your monthly data allowance. And it could provide a slower experience. To use your mobile network, you must first insert a valid SIM card.

Sign in with your Google account

Enter the email address or phone number connected to your Google Account. Tap Next to enter your password. Then tap Next one more time to submit.

If you’re setting up your PH-1 from a backup, enter the same login details associated with your previous Google account. Select the backup, then choose the apps and information you’d like to restore.

If you don’t have a Google Account, or want to set up a new one, tap Create Account.

Unlocking your phone

You can use the fingerprint sensor to quickly and securely unlock your Essential Phone. It’s also great for doing things like:

  • Safely buying apps, games, movies, music and more in the Google Play Store.
  • Using Google Pay to make secure purchases in retail stores, online, and in apps.
  • Signing-in to apps like password managers, cloud storage, banking apps, and more.

To add a fingerprint, quickly rest and lift your finger on the sensor until the circle closes. For added convenience, tap Add another to add multiple fingerprints.

For added security, you’ll also need to create a Pattern, PIN, or Password.

Choose to help us improve your experience

If you’d like, you can help us improve your experience with your Essential Phone. This will help us create updates and features that help you to enjoy your PH-1 even more.

Set up Google services for automatic backup, updates, and more

Turn on Back up to Google Drive to automatically backup your phone. So if you ever need to restore your phone, or you switch to a new Essential Phone, all your information—like contacts, photos and videos, text messages, and more—transfer over seamlessly.

Turning on Location settings helps give more accurate information when using apps like Google Maps, Find My Device, and more.

Activate Google Assistant

Google Assistant makes it easy to find answers to questions, manage your day, and much more with just the sound of your voice.

Tap Continue, then follow the prompts.

Teach it to recognize your voice, so only you can speak to it. And give it permission to see Location History. So you can easily do things like finding the fastest way to work by asking your Assistant, “OK Google. Navigate me to work.”

Finish up!

Set up any additional things, like another email address, adding payment methods for quick checkout with Google products, manage lock screen notifications, and more.

If you’d prefer to skip, for now, you can always set these up later.


All set!

You’re ready to go! Your Essential Phone comes only with the apps you need to get going. Swipe up from the bottom of your display to see them in your App drawer. But if you want to add more, tap on the Google Play Store Google_Play_Store_icon.png to find and download your favorite apps. The Google Play Store is also where you'll go to download games, movies and TV shows, books, and more. You can even visit the Google Play Store on the web and download apps remotely to your phone.

And here’s some app suggestions to get you started having an even better experience with your Essential Phone. Some of these come with your PH-1:

  • Google Pay to easily and securely pay for things in stores and online using your PH-1.
  • Google Allo to send texts, videos, GIFs, and more to anyone, anywhere, on any phone, for free.
  • Google Keep to create rich notes, lists, drawings, and more. And you can access them across devices and on the web.
  • Android Auto to more safely use your phone while driving so you can stay focused on the road.