Last year, an unknown start-up from China release a smartphone that had specs to challenge Samsung and Apple’s flagship models. OnePlus released the OnePlus 1 with the aim of selling 30,000 handsets. Instead, 1.5 million OnePlus 1 smartphones were sold across the world. Many have been wondering what will come next and find out if the OnePlus 1 was a one hit wonder or was a serious competitor to Apple, Samsung and other smartphone makers. The OnePlus 2 is the new model for the company, and there were many rumours and possible leaks of what the smartphone will look like and contain inside.
The OnePlus 2 is an android based smartphone, using the Lollipop version as its OS. The previous model used Cyanogen as its modified Android OS, but issues have cause OnePlus to use the Oxygen OS. This is still very similar to the standard Android OS most people are used to, but with more customizable features and less bloatware
The specs include an 8-cord Snapdragon 810 processor, LTE, reversible USB Type-C connection, two nano-SIM slots, a fingerprint reader, 5.5-inch 1080p display and a 13-megapixel OmniVision camera. There are two models available, both unlocked. The $329 model has 16GB storage with 3GB of RAM and the $389 model has 32GB storage and 4GB of RAM.
The only way to get the OnePlus 2 is by invite, which was the same as the OnePlus 1. This isn’t like other smartphone companies, and it sets OnePlus apart. The company aren’t going for record sales, aren’t attempting to flood the market with their device and they are attempting to change the game of smartphone releases and purchasing. The reason for doing it this way is to cut down the risk to OnePlus. Rather than manufacturing smartphones with the hope of selling a high number, OnePlus see how many people want their phone and ask them to register for an invite. It makes sense to do it this way, as it means OnePlus don’t need to make their products more expensive to cover unsold devices.
Xiaomi is another Chinese smartphone maker that has been named as a possible challenger to Apple and Samsung from China. Tens of millions of phones are sold by Xiaomi, but mainly around China and not in the international market. OnePlus, on the other hand, has been able to take their smartphone to the world and have found a way to not just be a one country smartphone company.
OnePlus is unlike Apple, Samsung, Google or other tech companies that attempt to design as many products as possible in as many areas as possible. The company makes one product at a time, puts all its effort and focus into making a device they’re proud of for the consumer. Thinking back on many product launches that had failed devices, it’s hard to imagine the CEO or company representative feeling comfortable with the announcement. They can’t say this, but there would be some who, while sounding very positive about their smartphone, knew in their minds the failure that was about to come. These companies have other avenues they can go down for profit and so may be able to write-off any losses on a device. OnePlus pretty much puts all their eggs into one basket and doesn’t aim to sell millions upon millions of devices. Instead, OnePlus just want to make a good phone at a decent price. OnePlus seems to consider the user as not just a consumer whose pockets can be raided.
Users want the best smartphone they can get, not the most expensive, and many users can’t splurge $700 plus on a device. Many flagship model smartphones are out of reach for a lot of people, unless they sign up to a monthly contract. For those who don’t have excess money and want a quality smartphone that is powerful, the OnePlus 2 is a very good smartphone at a low price.
What the OnePlus 2 doesn’t have is worth mentioning. The device isn’t NFC enable, so it can’t use Google Pay. There’s no removable SD slot and the battery isn’t removable. The casing is an aluminium frame with a textured back for grip. Other backs are available that include two wooden and a Kevlar option. The rear camera has optical image stabilization and the front camera is 5MP.
The OnePlus 2 doesn’t revolutionise the technology in a smartphone, but it does revolutionise the cost and selling method of a smartphone. This is a very good phone at a very good price and I hope it does well to shake up established players like Apple and Samsung. If OnePlus has another success, it seems like they’ll follow it up with another device. Especially if they follow their motto of “Never settle”.
To get the OnePlus 2, you need to register with OnePlus to wait for an invite to purchase the smartphone. Users who already had the OnePlus 1 model will be the first customers in and are guaranteed an invite.