OnePlus is determined to be the driving force behind 5G – but that does not mean you will not be able to buy a 4G version of OnePlus 7 in 2019.
OnePlus CEO Pete Lau has confirmed to TechRadar that the company plans to release a 4G variant of the phone along with the 5G version for anyone who does not want support for next-generation Internet connectivity.
Lau told TechRadar at the Qualcomm Snapdragon Summit 2018: "As the 5G will be for a small portion of fans, we will also have a 4G product developed and available in parallel."
The price of the phone is bound to be more expensive than what we are accustomed to by the brand, with Lau saying "my prediction is that the cost will be between $ 200 and $ 300 more for the 5G device .This is not necessarily a problem for our users like [5G] it's what they're looking for
"We never proposed to make a product cheaper for the cost of being cheaper: it was a transition of the single business model.
"Thanks to what it has been able to offer, many people will see the existing OnePlus flagship offer compared to other flagships at a much more reasonable price."
The release of a 4G version of the next phone next to the more expensive 5G phone will allow the company to remain competitive and at the same time offer next-generation Internet connectivity to those who want it.
Lau firmly believes that 5G innovation is one thing that the followers of the brand want and soon, that's why the brand is pushing hard on its mission to get a 5G phone on sale.
"From the point of view of users of the OnePlus community, this is something that they are interested in taking back as soon as possible: everyone considers it something disruptive and wants technology and a better understanding of how it can be used," Lau said.
"There is no more suitable brand to immerse yourself in 5G space in a rigid and precocious way than OnePlus It is difficult to know if other brands would have a user base that would immediately follow a 5G device, but for us it is pretty clear."
OnePlus has confirmed its intention to bring the first 5G phone to Europe with a special partnership with EE in the UK. There was no specific news for the United States or a world launch, and this is because the company has not yet decided on its path to other countries.
"We do not have a fixed plan in place, and it is something that is very determined by the carrier network and the carrier state: 5G is a very important strategic direction for us and it is something we think we can do a lot in this space, so we will discuss this as a strategy with several couriers to see what can be achieved ".
Lau could not confirm the name or release date for the company's first 5G phone, but considering it will be the first on the market in Europe, this is likely to be the next company phone. In this case, it could be OnePlus 7.
A 4G version of OnePlus 7 makes sense, and there are many updates in the new Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 chipset – which will be set in the company's next flagship phone – that can be used without taking advantage of its 5G capabilities.
Lau was not able to confirm other features we'll see on her next phone, but she's excited about the other updates that are available for Snapdragon 855.
"Improving the camera on the front of AI processing and what it is able to do is the most exciting thing for me," said Lau.
"It's very strong on the front of the AI, so the [Snapdragon 855] is about to have many exciting possibilities. "
The game is another area of the phone set to be upgraded with Snapdragon 855. The company has an improved Elite game mode that allows better graphics capabilities and high-speed multiplayer games with 5G.
However, these updates did not encourage the company to explore the idea of a dedicated phone.
Instead OnePlus wants to create a flagship device suitable for high-end games, but it is not a specific product like Razer Phone 2 or the Asus ROG phone.
"We will continue to have a central focus focused on performance and the creation of a fast and fluid experience, so we will not create a device specifically developed as a gaming device.
"We will focus on continuing to create devices that are seen as excellent and comfortable for video games, but we also want them to be very valuable as a daily driver, which is what we believe is essential for our user base."
Still focused on smartphones
The drive towards 5G is an important development for the Internet of things: devices connected to the Internet like smart appliances or smart speakers.
Just because OnePlus is moving forward in the 5G space does not mean that the company is destined to expand into a company that produces many devices for the whole house.
"We will remain focused on what we have always focused on, and this is a great smartphone device, but we will pay close attention to the impact of the 5G and how significant it will be for the Internet of Things.
"We will remain focused on what we do best, but we will follow closely and evaluate to understand in terms of potential to create greater value for the user who uses devices that are critical to their Internet-connected life."
This does not mean that the company is not interested in the IoT as a whole, it simply does not want to create many devices in itself. Instead, the company would prefer to see something slightly different that does not add pressure to society to develop other products.
"For us, and in the future, we would prefer to work to have an open platform where other devices can communicate and connect to the platform and have this type of ecosystem rather than building a lot of things on their own."
The only device to which the company is currently working could undoubtedly be adapted to that smart home space is the already announced OnePlus TV. This was announced in September 2018 and the company is not much closer to a release since its inception, but it is still something that the company intends to do.
Lau said: "[OnePlus TV] it is in the exploratory phase. After the announcement I came back, I spoke to the team and I said "OK, let's focus on the product, do not be distracted by other things and I will not even put pressure on you."
"It's about getting the right product. [The team] they have a very aggressive plan that they have put in place on their own, but from my point of view, I do not want them to be too aggressive and instead I want them to get the right product. "