There were surely times in OnePlus where a device like OnePlus 7 Pro looked like it was just a dream. Even in a quick growing market, OnePlus has continued their “Never Settle” motto, which has led us to their latest release – the OnePlus 7 Pro.EXPAND FULL STORY
We’re just a couple of weeks out from the debut of the OnePlus 7 and OnePlus 7 Pro, and the teaser machine is in full swing over at the company’s marketing department. Today, a full-page teaser ad in The New York Times has confirmed there’s no notch on the OnePlus 7 Pro, as well as a peek at the pop-up selfie camera.EXPAND FULL STORY
Speaking exclusively with The Verge in the buildup to his company’s next flagship phone launch, OnePlus CEO Pete Lau has confirmed some rumors and hinted at what we should expect from the next device. The big strategic change is that the OnePlus 7 will be arriving with a plus-one: a super flagship, which will be called the OnePlus 7 Pro and will feature 5G and a significant display upgrade. While OnePlus isn’t yet disclosing pricing, that model can be expected to cost somewhere close to the likes of Samsung’s Galaxy S10, Huawei’s P30 Pro, and Apple’s iPhone XS. It will mark OnePlus’ most direct challenge to the top tier of phones, building on the apparent success of the specced-up OnePlus 6T McLaren edition.EXPAND FULL STORY
In the past few days, we’ve seen an exceptional number of OnePlus leaks hit the web. Now, Pete Lau has dropped the first official OnePlus 7 teaser, hyping up the “especially smooth” experience it will deliver.EXPAND FULL STORY
With almost a month until the next OnePlus launch event, more details are coming out regarding the company’s new smartphones. This morning, we’ve got some new leaks on the display of the OnePlus 7 Pro, and as it seems, it will be the biggest upgrade in OnePlus history.EXPAND FULL STORY
The first thing you might notice about the OnePlus X is not its reasonable $249 price tag, but that it looks like someone took bits and pieces of trademark Android phone design and grafted it to an oversized iPhone 5 (or 5S). The OnePlus X’s boxy rectangular body, coupled with the 14 pairs of holes at the bottom that pump sound in and out, are dead giveaways.
But on a deeper level, it’s clear OnePlus is trying to channel Apple’s aesthetic trademarks — to ask Android users why they too can’t enjoy a product that cares more about how it looks than what’s inside. “I don’t think it’s healthy that there’s nobody who competes with Apple in cultural significance,” OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei told CNET at the Web Summit tech conference in Ireland this week. “It’s easier said than done, but we’re trying.”
Nearly every aspect of the OnePlus X is designed to elicit desire in spite of its incredibly outdated components. The gadget is sold, for now, only on an invite system, a sales mechanism that manages supply just as much as it operates like a velvet rope. The phone’s glass back and lack of lettering — the lone OnePlus logo on the back appears as the only branding anywhere on the device — give it a minimalist feel. Even the company’s coveted custom wallpapers are eye-popping abstractions of the company’s self-assured design philosophy.
OnePlus is even selling a ceramic version of the OnePlus X, available sometime before Christmas for €379 ($407). Only 10,000 units are being manufactured, and it’s unlikely the phone will make its way outside Europe before it becomes too outdated to warrant a purchase next year. For every 100 of the phone bodies OnePlus manufactures, the company can only use 20. Excess and unnecessary extravagance are part of the purchase, it seems.
All of that is to say that OnePlus seems to want the X to enter the same pantheon of phone design reserved for Apple devices. The iPhone 5S is still regarded by some phone enthusiasts as the ideal device: a blend of a not-big-but-big-enough display with the perfect hardware design so it fits comfortably in your hand without any fear of dropping it. Borrowing from and building upon the beauty of the iPhone 4, Apple’s successor marked a moment when consumers went from needing a smartphone to needing the most up-to-date smartphone.
The device and its S successor were also turning points for Apple. With a 4-inch screen, the iPhone 5 marked the first time the company was willing to change its mind and release a smartphone with a larger screen, yet one that still wouldn’t qualify as a phablet. Still today — with our bulky phone screens we can barely use with one hand — Apple’s older phone feels like a forgotten achievement. It’s no wonder rumors are already percolating that Apple will release a 4-inch phone — and iPhone 7 mini perhaps — to bring us back to the glory days.
Of course, that won’t rewind the overall screen debate. Almost every phone on the market has upgraded to a 4.7-inch or 5-inch screen, with many devices surpassing even that by nearly half an inch. Even an Apple throwback can’t stop that. But the iPhone 5S’s aesthetic legacy will live on — even if it must do so in an Android phone.
DUBLIN — OnePlus is a seemingly impossible company: a smartphone maker that’s made a name for itself in one of the most competitive markets around.
OnePlus is no Samsung, LG, Sony, Motorola or Apple, in terms of either brand recognition or sales volume. But alongside fellow Chinese manufacturers like Xiaomi, Huawei, ZTE and TCL’s Alcatel OneTouch, it’s showing that there may still be room for new contenders.
But how to stand out? For co-founder Carl Pei, the answer involves building a community of loyal followers and, ultimately, the kind of recognition held today just by the world’s most valuable brand, Apple.
“I don’t think it’s healthy that there’s nobody who competes with Apple in cultural significance,” Pei said in an interview here at the Web Summit tech conference. “It’s easier said than done, but we’re trying.”
OnePlus isn’t a household brand, but with 900 employees, a vocal group of fans and a headquarters in the Chinese manufacturing hub of Shenzhen, it’s got potential. Although it’s only 2 years old, the company is determined to build a business that involves not just selling phones, but actually making some of the profits that few beyond Apple can claim today. In Apple’s most recent quarter, iPhone sales were responsible for much of its $11.1 billion profit.
Pei won’t reveal shipment numbers, but OnePlus has built a following in social-media circles that converts to thousands of customers signing up to order its phones: the OnePlus 1 from 2014, the OnePlus 2 this year costing between $330 and $390 depending on memory, and most recently the $250 OnePlus X — if you have an invitation.
He has yet to nail down the best marketing approach, but he’s going to continue to try to attract followers who enjoy interacting with the company. For example, fans who frequent the company’s online forums or subscribe to its newsletter are more likely to get one of the invitations that are required to buy a OnePlus phone.
“We want to make the customer feel like a part of this company,” he said. “It starts with being honest.” Pei admits that he doesn’t know if that approach will scale beyond a small early market, but it’s better than just spending so much money to promote phones that there’s little room left for actual profits from the resulting sales.
“Anybody can pay a lot of money and get sales,” Pei said. Of Apple’s financial clout, he added, “it’s not healthy business when one company takes home 90 percent of the profits.”