Recently, the Chinese smartphone manufacturer, OnePlus broke the internet by announcing its new model, Nord. If you think it is just another OnePlus model, then you are gravely mistaken. According to the company, Nord will be one of their first models in their affordable handset series under the same. Even though they don’t compete directly with either Apple or Samsung, OnePlus keeps their prices in such a way that they can entice smartphone fanatics to follow their product line. In fact, their pricing has been their major selling point. Can the company sustain the competition by releasing an affordable series? And if they do, what would be its price? Stick till the end of the article to find out more about the price and specs of OnePlus Nord.
While the brand is known for its flagship tier, OnePlus is tapping into a more price-conscious product line through its Nord series. To clarify, Nord is not just the name for their upcoming smartphone, but the name for an entire product line. Ever since the announcement for Nord was made official, technophiles began drawing comparisons with OnePlus’ 2015 model, X. Recently, a survey consisting of 7,813 responses, revealed that OnePlus Nord will be a worthy successor of X. Unfortunately, X was not well received by the community. As a result of which, OnePlus had to discontinue the line just 7 months after its release.
From 400 options to 1: “Nord”
Before ascertaining “Nord”, OnePlus had 400 ideas for the name. If you are an avid follower of any one of the smartphone forums, you would have seen how OnePlus was close to naming it the “OnePlus Z”. As a matter of fact, they even set up a teaser Instagram account under the name “onepluslitezthing”.
“When we started this project, we had a list of 400 names,” Carl Pei, the assistant head of OnePlus Nord, told the media. “However, the process of narrowing down the names wasn’t just a case of crossing less-favorable ones off a board – there was some legal complexity involved too”
It is not just OnePlus that is facing this issue. Although the smartphone boom has given us a ton of new and innovative models, it has also given companies to closely watch the space to not fall prey to legal issues. Since there are a lot of names registered at different patent offices around the globe.
Why release an affordable model now?
As mentioned earlier, strategic pricing is OnePlus’ main forte. Typically, most of their models are priced from $600 to $1000. Recently, OnePlus released the “8” series, which roughly costs around $899. However, the company dealt with some criticism for hiking their prices. If you could assess their early models, you will see their mid-range pricing. Hence, a drastic hike on their “8” series was not what their fans would’ve expected. Therefore, to address their fans’ concerns, the company unveiled Nord. If you ask me, this is the perfect time to do so!
Is OnePlus compromising on quality for price?
There is a general belief that, if a product is being sold for a lower price, chances are the quality would be poor. But, it is important to note that OnePlus Nord is an affordable series, not a “cheap” one. There’s a critical difference between them. For answering the question as to whether the company is compromising on quality, it is important to skim through the promised features.
Snapdragon 765G chipset
Following the announcement, there was huge speculation over the processor that would drive the Nord series. Realizing the speculations within the community, Carl Pei announced that the phone would have Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 765G chipset. While it was clear that the Nord wouldn’t have an 845 chipset for this price range, 765G is a wise alternative. We have seen the prowess of this chipset on LG’s newly released Velvet.
The integration of Snapdragon 765G will make Nord 5G-enabled. Hence, you can enjoy the power of the next-generation network, provided you live within the coverage area. According to Pei, Nord would give the buyers a gist as to what 5G is capable of achieving, before buying a pricey flagship device. The inclusion of 5G “is more about ease of mind, it’s more about future-proofing”, Pie told the media.
In order to ensure that the Nord series will be able to compete with other models in the mid-range market, OnePlus have integrated their flagship camera proposition. Although the company is yet to release the official specs, if you pay close attention to one of their videos portraying the image of Nord, you can see dual selfie cameras contained within a hole-punch notch. When it comes to the rear camera, you will notice a vertically oriented camera bump towards the left end. However, we are yet to get a final word from the company.
To ante up the user experience in Nord, OnePlus will use its popular Oxygen OS interface. Speaking to the user experience aspect, Pei said that “it’s not only the hardware but also how we optimize the software, the animations, to make sure that every part of it flows really seamlessly.” This seamless optimization and customization will be enabled by Nord’s Oxygen interface.
While discussing the specs of Nord, Pei had shared the three core beliefs that the company is banking on. We have discussed two of them viz, Camera, and User Experience. The third one is OnePlus quality. “We wanted to bring out a mid-range smartphone that really lives up to the OnePlus quality,” Pei explains. As a matter of fact, Pei has a separate team to look after this new mid-range product line. They will get “every little detail right, as we did on the flagship [phones]”, Pei shared, before adding “This attention to detail is going to be something that really sets us apart,”
6.55-inch OLED display with a 90Hz refresh rate
6GB of RAM
128GB of storage
4,300mAh battery with 30W fast charging
Perhaps the moment that you have all been waiting for, Nord’s price is expected to fall just below $500. If you compare the price with the 8 series, you will notice a 50% decrease. This tells us about OnePlus being vocal about its buyer’s concerns. The sub-$500 Nord will surely take on a crowded mid-range market. But, with its features, Nord can surely sustain the crowd, given it gets its “little details right”.
How is the price comparable to other mid-range models?
OnePlus Nord will take on Google Pixel 3a XL and iPhone SE in the mid-range market. While Google Pixel starts at $479, iPhone’s new SE starts from $449. It will be interesting to see what OnePlus meant by “just below $500”. There are reports suggesting the price being $499.
The release date
OnePlus Nord will be unveiled through the world’s first Augmented Reality event. The event is scheduled for a July 21st launch, at 3 PM BST / 10 AM ET / 7 AM PT. You will be able to witness the event through the OnePlus’ app, which is available for both Android and iOS. Just so you know, this is not the first time that OnePlus is trying something innovative for the product launch. The OnePlus 2 was launched through a virtual reality event, in 2015.