Mobile phone maker Essential has reportedly acquired CloudMagic for an undisclosed amount, according to TechCrunch. CloudMagic is the company that developed the Newton email management application.
Prior to the acquisition, Newton Mail received many positive reviews as an alternative to other email apps. And Newton Mail had more than 40,000 paying customers, but CloudMagic said that the service was going to shut down in September. But the shutdown did not end up happening because Essential actually bought Newton.
Founded in Palo Alto three years ago by Android co-founder Andy Rubin, Essential has had a rough year. Essential canceled plans for a new smartphone this year — which would have reportedly been the successor to the PH-1 known as the PH-2. Essential reportedly started looking for buyers in May 2018. Plus Essential laid off approximately 30% of its staff in October.
Around that same time, The New York Times also published a bombshell report about how Rubin received a substantial amount of money as he exited Google following an alleged misconduct claim. Due to the blowback of similar reports, Google had to restructure the way it handled misconduct reports.
Now Essential is reportedly working on a phone that uses artificial intelligence that can automatically respond to messages on behalf of its users. That device is expected to have a small screen and would be primarily controlled with voice commands such as setting up appointments and sending text messages.
Through this acquisition, it seems likely that Essential will integrate Newton Mail directly into the artificial intelligence device. So Essential is likely going to integrate voice command features into Newton Mail for its next device.