With smartphone prices reaching sky-high figures, it has become mandatory for smartphone manufacturers to introduce versions of the same smartphone designated for different categories. However, OnePlus was one of the very few manufacturers that produced flagship-killers: smartphones with extremely competitive pricing and the best of features to compete with 1000$ smartphones. But it looks like this year, OnePlus would give in to the trend and have multiple models introduced at its event. Among them would be the ONEPLUS 7 PRO.
OnePlus CEO Pete Lau has confirmed some rumours 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 include a significant display upgrade plus a 5G option. 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.
What OnePlus really wants to talk about right now is the new display inside the OnePlus 7 Pro variant. According to Lau, OnePlus is spending three times as much on its display this year than on previous models, expecting this new panel to “redefine fast and smooth” and set a new benchmark for mobile displays. “The first time I saw it myself,” the CEO says, “I was stunned.” Other than promising that the OnePlus 7 Pro display will be “super-smooth and very crisp,” OnePlus wouldn’t elaborate on the underlying specs. However, leaks and rumours of 90Hz screens are already floating about, which would be in accord with the teasers about unprecedented smoothness.
The new OnePlus 7 will be more expensive than the OnePlus 6T, which in turn was more expensive than its predecessor. Lau now faces the challenge of convincing loyal OnePlus fans that yet another jump up in price will be worth it, given how OnePlus phones have vacated their original position as budget-friendly flagship killers. Now the company is trying to supplant the pricey flagships rather than merely undercutting them on price. Then again, Huawei achieved that same feat by improving and upgrading its devices at a faster rate than the rest of the market, and now its flagship P and Mate series of phones are credibly priced in line with Samsung and Apple’s best. OnePlus enjoys the added advantage of not being hated by the US authorities as Huawei is, giving it access to a hugely important and lucrative market that’s willing to spend more to get more.