oneplus 8T cameras
OnePlus 8T

OnePlus has long been rumored to be working on a ‘Lite’ smartphone with slightly watered-down specs compared to its vanilla ‘flagship killers’, but those rumors have been proven wrong year after year. Instead of launching a ‘Lite’ device, OnePlus’ budget smartphone ambitions gained fruition in the form of the OnePlus Nord family. But as per a new report, OnePlus might finally jump the ‘Lite’ bandwagon next year by launching the OnePlus 9 Lite. OnePlus 9 series is expected to break cover in March, so we’ll likely come across more details in the day leading up to the launch event.

Expect some cutbacks in camera capability and build quality

As per Android Central, the OnePlus 9 Lite will debut alongside the OnePlus 9 and its more powerful Pro sibling. This marks the second major shift in OnePlus’ core smartphone strategy. The company switched to a two-product scheme in 2019 when it launched the OnePlus 7 Pro alongside the OnePlus 7, and is apparently forking the approach into a three-phones-at-once strategy. Unfortunately, details about the OnePlus 9 Lite’s internal hardware or design attributes are still under the wraps, save for the SoC powering it.

READ MORE: New OnePlus 9 5G leak bares it all

According to the report, the OnePlus 9 Lite will come armed with the Snapdragon 865 SoC that can be found inside a majority of 2020 Android flagships. Now, the aforementioned SoC might be a year old in the face of Qualcomm’s latest flagship – the Snapdragon 888 – but it can still handle any task you throw at it with ease and will continue to do so for at least another year. The choice of SoC is not surprising, as OnePlus will be cutting some corners to bring down the costs of making the OnePlus 9T.

READ MORE: OnePlus 9 Pro leak gives us our first look at its design prior to a March 2021 debut

We can expect the OnePlus 9 Lite to pack at least three rear cameras or even four, if the budget-centric OnePlus Nord is anything to go by. Another key area where OnePlus will likely make a few concessions is by using less premium build material and eschewing a few other reserved-for-high-end-smartphone tricks such as wireless charging. Any information about pricing is also non-existent at the moment, but OnePlus will likely position the OnePlus 9T in the same price bracket where the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE and Google Pixel 5 have been garnering some laurels.

READ MORE: OnePlus CEO Pete Lau confirms a smartwatch is coming early next year
I’ve been writing about consumer technology for over three years now, having worked with names such as NDTV and Beebom in the past. Aside from covering the latest news, I’ve reviewed my fair share of devices ranging from smartphones and laptops to smart home devices. I also have interviewed tech execs and appeared as a host in YouTube videos talking about the latest and greatest gadgets out there.
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