OnePlus 2 launches with top-shelf hardware, sub-$400 pricing
If there’s one thing OnePlus know how to do, it’s getting people talking about its smartphones. Summers often find themselves dominated by early whispers about the next iPhone, or maybe leaks revealing Samsung’s next phablet, but this year the OnePlus 2 found itself the start as nearly as many headlines itself. From early rumors, to official teasers, there’s been a lot to talk about, all leading up to today, when the OnePlus 2 makes its formal debut. With the help of an innovative streaming-VR announcement, OnePlus has seen to just that, finally bringing us the full story on its second-gen flagship.
The OnePlus 2 features a 5.5-inch 1080p display with Gorilla Glass protection. And as promised, the phone runs a Snapdragon 810 SoC. But when we get to the RAM situation, things are a little tricky. OnePlus already told us the OnePlus 2 would get 4GB of RAM. And while it will, that’s only one configuration option. See, like last year the phone will come in two storage capacities: 16GB and 64GB. And while the 64GB OnePlus 2 gets 4GB of high-speed LPDDR4 RAM, the 16GB model only has 3GB.
The phone’s 13 main camera offers optical stabilization, laser-assisted autofocus, large pixels for extra light sensitivity, and a dual LED flash. OnePlus also gives the phone dual-SIM support, stereo rear-mounted speakers, and a 3300mAh battery.
There’s a next-gen connector for power and data purposes, as the OnePlus 2 arrives with its promised reversible USB type-C interface. And we knew to expect a speedy fingerprint scanner, which will authenticate users in just half a second, and support scans of five fingertips.
Remember the “mute” switch from those recent leaks? Turns out that’s a slider that lets the user quickly switch between alert modes: top sets all notifications off, middle lets only priority contacts through, and bottom allows them all.
After things didn’t quite work out last year, OnePlus is trying the swappable-back-panel routine again, bringing the OnePlus 2 an array of interchangeable backs in a variety of materials, from the familiar default sandstone black, to Kevlar and various wooden finishes.
Software tweaks present on the OxygenOS-running phone include the Audio Tune EQ for custom sound shaping, built-in SwiftKey keyboard, and the new Shelf feature for quick access to frequently used apps and widgets. Gesture control allows users to interact with the OS without even waking the OnePlus 2 from sleep, and a user-controlled LED allows for personalized notification alerts.
How about pricing? We knew the OnePlus 2 would land in the $322-$450 range, and had been thinking that something like $350 might be likely. Instead, the phone comes in on the low side of things, with the base 16GB/3GB version selling for just under $330. The premium 64GB/4GB model will sell for more like $390.
As we mentioned earlier, OnePlus is accepting reservations for its invite list now. Interested shoppers can also try to score an invite through social media channels, from users who have already bought the OnePlus 2 themselves, and through upcoming contests. Invite-only sales open in the US, Europe, and India on August 11, with additional nations including Singapore, Indonesia, and Malaysia getting the phone sometime in Q4.