OnePlus’ Carl Pei sat down with CNET and revealed that the company’s next flagship, presumably known as the OnePlus 3, will launch at the end of the second quarter of this year.
The OnePlus 3 will be positioned to “captivate” users in the same way the original OnePlus One did back in 2014. Pei even hinted the design will be entirely new, meaning we shouldn’t expect the upcoming phone to resemble the more recent OnePlus 2. And that’s good because the majority of critics and consumers didn’t care for last year’s flagship after OnePlus hyped it as the “flagship killer” capable of besting existing and future phones on the market. While the company has never released sales figures, OnePlus says around 800,000 are active on its community site. The OnePlus 2 didn’t generate anywhere near as much post-launch buzz as the OnePlus One.
The OnePlus 2 arrived on the scene as the phone to defeat all phones, which basically means OnePlus believed it had designed a futureproof high-end phone. That couldn’t have been any more incorrect because the OnePlus 2 was missing key features from the start that many other competitors already had. OnePlus didn’t really have a value proposition. A 5.5-inch Full HD (1920×1080) display, Snapdragon 810 processor, and 13MP camera just wasn’t going to cut it when Samsung and LG was matching and mostly besting the OnePlus 2 in many areas.
Pei wants the OnePlus 3 to have “at least” the same special feeling the world felt about the company’s first phone. To do so, OnePlus will finally start utilizing more “traditional marketing” strategies rather than just social media and word-of-mouth.
Based on Pei’s comments, the OnePlus 3 should be revealed and perhaps even released no later than June. The distribution strategy won’t be all that different from the past as Pei says the phone will be sold unlocked directly to consumers in the United States and other markets; however, it was not mentioned if the dreaded invite system is going away or not.
We’re hoping this time OnePlus actually understands what it means to have a “flagship killer.”