I'm still enjoying my Essential PH-1. It's really nice to be back on Android.
Essential pushed Android 9.0 Pie on the day of release. I was traveling so I deferred the upgrade for a couple of days.
Now I've been running Pie almost a week. I haven't had any problems.
One new feature I wasn't sure about was Pie's gesture navigation.
Turns out I like it and find it useful.
The "Home" button is replaced with a "Pill." The "Back" button only appears when it is useful. The "Recent apps" button is GONE.
I haven't tacked all the functions but I have found a couple that are very useful.
To get the recent applications, just swipe the "Pill" about halfway up the screen. The recent apps show up in an almost full screen presentation. Swipe left or right to pick one. Tap to go there. Swipe up to close the app. Shades of webOS!
I used to use the double tap on the "Recent apps" button to directly go to the most recent app. This would let you swap between 2 apps easily. In Pie, just swipe the "Pill" to the right. There's the most recent app. Keep on swiping to the right and you can go back further!
There's lots more function there.