Congrats on getting an Essential Phone. And welcome to the Essential community. Here’s how to set up your new Essential Phone.
Before you get started
Want to bring your stuff over from your old phone to your new Essential Phone? Learn how to move your content from an iPhone or another Android phone:
And don't forget to insert your SIM Card. This connects your Essential Phone to your mobile carrier. If you’re unsure of how to install a SIM card, check out our Support post.
If you don’t have a SIM card, you can set up your phone over Wi-Fi. But you can’t use any of your carrier features until you insert a valid SIM card.
To begin, tap Let's Go on the initial startup screen.
To change the language, tap . If you have vision impairments and need a bit more assistance, tap Vision Settings to adjust Accessibility and other display options.
Setup as New or Copy Data
To set up your Essential Phone as a brand new device, tap Don't Copy.
If you're moving over from an iPhone, tap An iPhone device, and follow the prompts.
Or if you're moving over from another Android phone, tap A backup from the cloud or A backup from an Android phone to set up your Essential Phone using your saved data in Google Drive.
If you didn't make a backup, don't worry. Your contacts, mail, calendars, notes—and possibly even your photos and videos—are already saved in Google. Tap Don't Copy to set up your Essential Phone as a new device. Your information will appear once you sign in to your Google Account.
Connect to a network
Using a Wi-Fi network will provide the fastest experience when setting up your Essential Phone. We recommend using a home Wi-Fi network. Avoid using public Wi-Fi networks (like a coffee shop, university, etc.), as these can be unstable—causing the set up process to take significantly longer or stop, altogether.
If a Wi-Fi network isn't available, and you've inserted a SIM card, you can use your mobile network to complete the set up. It will affect your monthly data allowance. And it could provide a slower experience.
Sign in with your Google Account
Enter the email address or phone number connected to your Google Account. Tap Next and enter your password, then tap Next again to submit.
If you don’t have a Google Account, or want to set up a new one, tap Create Account. You'll need a Google Account if you want to things like:
• Download apps, games, and other content from the Google Play Store
• Back up your phone and sync Contacts, Mail, and more
• Use device protection features, like Find My Device
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 on-screen circle closes. For added convenience, tap Add another to add multiple fingerprints, or tap Next to continue. You can add more fingerprints after you've set up your phone.
For added security, you’ll also need to create a Pattern, PIN, or Password.
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 device even more.
Turn on Google services
Turn on Back up to Google Drive to automatically backup your Essential Phone. So if you ever need to restore your device, 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 Use Location helps give more accurate information when using apps like Google Maps, Find My Device, and more.
Allow scanning helps find Wi-Fi networks you can connect to when you're out and about. Send usage and diagnostic data sends device information to Google to improve your Android experience. And Install updates & apps automatically downloads updates for your phone and your apps—so you're always up-to-date.
And if you change your mind about any of these, you can enable or disable these after you've set up your phone.
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.
You can 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.”
Tap Next, then tap Turn On to set up Google Assistant and follow the prompts. Or tap No Thanks to continue setting up your device. You can activate Google Assistant at any time after the set 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.
A few more helpful things
You’re ready to go! Your Essential Phone comes only with the apps you need to get going. Swipe up twice 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 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:
• Google Pay to easily and securely pay for things in stores and online using your Essential Phone
• 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