Edit: In the time since the initial launch, there's been confirmation that the OnePlus One does in fact support 802.11ac. It's a single spatial stream part, Qualcomm's WCN3680.

In what has possibly been the most hyped-up launch in recent history, OnePlus has finally unveiled their new One. This is a smartphone that shares a great deal with the Oppo Find 7a, and it has been announced that Oppo is the company that will produce this phone. For those that haven't followed this company, OnePlus is a start-up that was founded last year in December by Pete Lau, former VP at Oppo.

To start off, this is a phone with a 5.5" 1080p display from JDI (Japan Display Inc.), and ships with a 2.5 GHz Snapdragon 801, which clearly shows the high-end aspirations for this phone. The rest of the specs can be seen below.

  Oppo Find 7a OnePlus One

MSM8974ABv3 2.3 GHz Snapdragon 801

MSM8974ACv3 2.45 GHz Snapdragon 801
Display 5.5” 1080p IPS LCD (JDI) 5.5” 1080p IPS LCD (JDI)
Network 2G / 3G / 4G LTE (Qualcomm MDM9x25 UE Category 4 LTE) 2G / 3G / 4G LTE (Qualcomm MDM9x25 UE Category 4 LTE)
Dimensions 152.6 × 75 × 9.2 mm, 170 grams 152.9 x 75.9 x 8.9 mm, 162 grams

13MP (4128 x 3096) Rear Facing, 1/3.06" CMOS size (Sony IMX214), F/2.0, 5MP FFC w/ F/2.0 aperture

13MP (4128 x 3096) Rear Facing, 1/3.06" CMOS size (Sony IMX214), F/2.0, 5MP FFC w/ F/2.0 aperture
Battery 2800 mAh (10.64 Whr) 3100 mAh (11.78 Whr)
OS Android 4.3 with ColorOS Android 4.4 with CyanogenMod 11S
Connectivity 802.11a/b/g/n/ac + BT 4.0, USB2.0, GPS/GNSS, MHL, DLNA, NFC 802.11a/b/g/n/ac + BT 4.1, USB2.0, GPS/GNSS, MHL, DLNA, NFC
SIM Size MicroSIM MicroSIM

As shown above, the Find 7a and the OnePlus One are extremely similar phones outside of a few key areas, with a thinner and somewhat lighter build on the OnePlus One, along with a larger battery, deletion of the microSD slot and a unibody construction that prevents easily swapping batteries. OnePlus has also detailed their curved back design, which goes from 4.6mm on the edge to 8.9mm in the middle, which means that the design is curved similarly to the One (M8) and other HTC designs, although without the associated pyramidal internal stack that would increase volumetric efficiency for such a design.

OnePlus is also pushing their dual stereo speakers, both of which are placed on the bottom. I'm not too sure what the point of this is though, as the speaker separation is almost nothing, although peak volume can increase through constructive interference.

Going through the marketing materials, there's quite a bit that OnePlus is advertising that isn't necessarily a point of differentiation. Things like Touch On Lens (TOL) and Content-Adaptive Backlight Control (CABC) are commonly used throughout the industry, and TOL has already been supplanted by in-cell touch technologies used by OEMs such as LG and Apple. CABC is a power-saving technique often seen in most LCD-screened phones, and is often identified as dynamic contrast due to some implementations having a visible flicker effect from image to image. The LTPS display is also nothing new, as most LCDs use such technology in order to have manageable levels of power consumption at the high pixel densities that most mobile displays have.The camera is also identical to the one found in the Oppo Find 7a, with no clear differentiation.

What is interesting is the UI, which runs a custom version of CyanogenMod 11. It seems to be a new skin over AOSP, and represents the first departure that I've seen by CyanogenMod from AOSP-UI in a long time. An example of the lock screen and theming application can be seen below. The phone also has a capacitive menu button with no multitasking button, so it'll be interesting to see if this will pass Android CTS as most of the major OEMs seem to have moved to home/back/multitasking configurations despite previously adhering to home/back/menu.

Outside of UI, pricing is also another key differentiator. The phone will come in two colors, silk white and sandstone black. There will also be custom backplates, with wood, kevlar, and denim planned. It seems that based upon the launch presentation that this is a concession done in place of creating a metal unibody design, as issues with RF performance were explicitly referenced. In the US, the 16GB variant will be 299 USD, and the 64GB variant will be 349 USD. At launch, an invite system is in place to handle demand, although it seems that general availability will happen in Q2 2014. Prices for the supported regions can be seen in the photos below.


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  • Death666Angel - Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - link

    That hype didn't reach me. Looks like a good phone for the price, let's see some tests! :D
  • apappas - Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - link

    The most important chart is the one showing worldwide prices. For once Europeans get to pay for chinese-made products as much money as Americans do. Not like Apple which applies a $200-300 markup depending on the product.
  • NeBlackCat - Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - link

    Some of the specifications and comments in this article are puzzling to me. Someone says it doesn't have an IPS display, which the article suggests, but Tom's Hardware says it does.

    Also, the USB 3 capability is only relevant if the internal flash and buses are fast enough to make the extra speed beneficial, and the connector can cope. Especially relevant if OTG is supported (which we also aren't told). I'm initially reminded of all the current SOCs which have 'fast' external interfaces like SATA and 100mbit Ethernet that are internally bottlenecked by slow data paths to the CPU/memory like, typically, USB 2. Seeing a USB 2 connector only worries me more - admittedly I don't use USB 3 on any small devices but surely that extra USB 3 speed was partly the result of specifying better connectors. More info needed.

    And if it really wants to compete with the best, and for my money, then it really needs wireless charging. No mention of that (as present or absent) either.

    A/T says it has BT 4.0, Tom's says 4.1.

    Water resistance is not mentioned here, but Tom's shows a (marketing) video including a snippet of it being held under a tap.

    Further, I'd have thought the Oppo N1 would be a more relevant point of comparison. Firstly it's also officially Cyanogen (the only other one?). It's also attractively priced, Chinese, and actually does differentiate (rotating camera, rear touchpad, bigger screen). It's certainly the OP One's main rival for my cash. Not some virtually identical but less sexy model.

    I'd have thought that the point of the bottom edge speakers would be to direct audio out of the phone, as opposed to directly onto a smothered desk, using the maximum 'cone' to air surface area. Stereo separation is never going to be relevant on a phone, that's what headphones are for. Having had so many phones with crap downward facing speakers this is actually one of my favourite One features.

    Tom's advises that white = 16gb model, and black = 64gb model, ie 2 skus. Here it is implied that colour and flash size are independent variables, ie 4 skus. Who is right?

    All in all I'm disappointed with the the coverage here (that doesn't happen often) and nonplussed as to why, after all the hype leading to the big release of the details today, there still seems to be so many basic questions remaining unanswered or answered inconsistently or incompletely. Or am I simply too drunk. (<-- rhetorical, and it could also be euphoric).

    And to those who say SD support isnt necessary on a 64gb device I observe this: I have had many smartphones over the years. Most ended up destroyed, often involving water. Of those, I have had a 100% data recovery rate from those with SD cards (I just took the card out and it worked) and 0% from those without. It is not just about storage capacity. And don't lecture me about backups- you don't either.

    Lastly is anyone else wondering to what extent OnePlus really is a different company to Oppo, from whom their management is apparently derived and who is actually manufacturing the OnePlus One (oooooh that abbreviates so closely to OPPO 😉), a device so similar - as the piece notes - to one of their own. Or is it just me who's cynical enough to wonder if it's just another part of the extreme marketing (rebrand to sexier, less Chinese sounding name) to sell basically an existing, though physically sexed up, device? If it isn't, whoever writes VP's employment contracts at Oppo needs a good hard kick for forgetting the IP protection bit.

    PS - OnePlus, this took me a whole evening to type on a crappy mobile device. I wasnt even drunk when I started. You owe me a $1 phone. Unless the last para hit the mark, in which case I expect the boys round tomorrow and have already checked that my medical insurance is up to date.
  • JoshHo - Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - link

    USB 3.0 was a typo, BT 4.0 was not: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/Bl4v6aNIcAA5bMy.png:la...

    OnePlus has been rather poor when it comes to providing good details on even the basics of the phone.
  • NeBlackCat - Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - link

    Pretty major typo, and yes...that's the impression I got. On paper this is seemingly the phone I want, but the marketing has been so over-egged that there's no way I will stump up cash until I see actual reviews.
  • NeBlackCat - Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - link

    You, sir, are an idiot.
  • NeBlackCat - Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - link

    Well said!
  • JoshHo - Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - link

    Yeah, unfortunately I had to write this live during the announcement.
  • NeBlackCat - Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - link

    As a punter, I'd rather have accurate and complete (as far as possible) information an hour later, than wrong and/or iffy and/or incomplete information an hour earlier. Come on mate - if we can't rely on a site of your gravitas to give us the accurate skinny on a new development, then where do we get it?

    And if you know you're not getting the full monty for your article then why not say so up front rather than waiting to be nitpicked on it?
  • JoshHo - Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - link

    I understand your concern and your feedback has been noted. I'll be sure to be more diligent in the future to prevent such errors.

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