Is it a failure of the platform as a whole if there isn’t a viable market for every possible permutation of features on that platform? People complain about the disappearance of compact flagships and physical keyboards, but if more people had demanded them (or some enterprising company saw a chance to claim an open niche) they’d still be around. I hope that the same can’t be said about headphone jacks in a couple of years.
For what it’s worth, nobody’s making my exact wishlist either (giant OLED screen, stock OS, expandable storage, headphone jack, and thick body to allow for a larger battery).
@wumpus is right that there’s a gap in the processor space, with no option for true high-end single-core performance. And I certainly wish that manufacturers would cater to my preferences instead of chasing the slimmest bodies and the shiniest (and most fragile) case materials. But there is meaningful differentiation on features (OLED vs. LCD, expandable storage, headphone jack, waterproofing, stylus, screen shape, various camera gimmicks, etc.)
And honestly, even if every company was selling an identical generic commodity, there is absolutely value to the end user just because they are competing for our business on price. That article about the Essential phone’s sales mentions you can lease one for $14.58/month. It’s a lot easier to overlook some gripes when you’re paying 1/2 or 1/3 the price of the competition.