OnePlus

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OnePlus
一加科技
Private
Industry Mobile phones
Founded 16 December 2013; 3 years ago (2013-12-16)
Founder Pete Lau, Carl Pei
Headquarters Shenzhen, Guangdong, China[1]
Area served
Worldwide
Key people
Pete Lau (CEO)
Carl Pei (co-founder)
Products OnePlus One (2014)
OnePlus 2 (2015)
OnePlus X (2015)
OnePlus 3 (2016)
OnePlus 3T (2016)
OnePlus 5 (2017)
OnePlus 5T (2017)
OnePlus Icons
OnePlus Bullets (& v2)
OnePlus Powerbank
OxygenOS (Overseas)
HydrogenOS (China)
Phone cases
Shirts and bags
Revenue Increase US$300 million (2014)
Parent OPPO Electronics
Website oneplus.net
www.oneplus.cn
OnePlus 一加
Chinese 深圳市万普拉斯科技有限公司
Literal meaning Shenzhen OnePlus Science & Technology Co., Ltd.

OnePlus (Chinese: 一加科技; pinyin: Yījiā Kējì) is a Shenzhen based Chinese smartphone manufacturer founded by Pete Lau (CEO) and Carl Pei in December 2013. It is headquartered in Guangdong. The company officially serves 38 countries and regions around the world as of March 2016. They have released 7 phones, amongst other products.

History[edit]

OnePlus was founded on 17 December 2013 by former Oppo vice-president Pete Lau (刘作虎) and Carl Pei (裴宇).[2] According to the Chinese government's documentation, the only institutional stockholder in OnePlus is Oppo.[3] Although Lau initially denied that OnePlus was a wholly owned subsidiary of Oppo, upon release of the regulatory filings they admitted that they are owned by Oppo and are "in talks with other investors" (although nothing has been announced to date).[4] The company's main goal was to design a smartphone that would balance high-end quality with a lower price than other phones in its class, believing that users would "Never Settle" (Chinese: 不将就) for the lower-quality devices produced by other companies. Lau explained that "we will never be different just for the sake of being different. Everything done has to improve the actual user experience in day-to-day use."[5][6] He also showed aspirations of being the "Muji of the tech industry", emphasizing its focus on high-quality products with simplistic, user-friendly designs.[5] Continuing Lau's association with the platform from the Oppo N1,[6] OnePlus entered into an exclusive licensing agreement with Cyanogen Inc. to base its products' Android distribution upon a variant of the popular custom ROM CyanogenMod and use its trademarks outside of China.[7][8]

The company unveiled its first device, the OnePlus One, on 23 April 2014.[5] In December 2014, alongside the release of the OnePlus One in India exclusively through Amazon, OnePlus also announced plans to establish a presence in the country, with plans to open 25 official walk-in service centres across India.[9]

OnePlus made its products available in Southeast Asia for the first time, partnering with Lazada Indonesia[10] on 23 January 2015 and is expected to expand during this year throughout the region.

In April 2014, OnePlus hired Han Han as the product ambassador in mainland China.[11]

On 9 March 2014 the company decided to expand its operations to all European countries except Switzerland (although OnePlus devices can be purchased in Switzerland via local online retailers), serving now 43 countries and regions all over the world. As of March 2016, OnePlus serves for the following countries and regions:[citation needed] Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Mainland China, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Malaysia, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Spain, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Discontinuation of the invite system[edit]

OnePlus ended the invite system with the launch of OnePlus 3 on 14 June 2016.[12] Announced via an interactive VR launch event, the OnePlus 3 initially went on sale within the VR app itself. OnePlus touted the event as the world's first VR shopping experience.[13] The phone was made available for sale later that day in China, North America and Europe on the OnePlus website, and in India on Amazon India.

Products[edit]

OnePlus has manufactured seven devices:

  • OnePlus One (codename "bacon"; unveiled on 23 April 2014; international release on 6 June 2014)
  • OnePlus 2 (codename "oneplus2"; unveiled on 27 July 2015; international release on 11 August 2015)
  • OnePlus X (codename "onyx"; unveiled on 29 October 2015; international release on 5 November 2015)
  • OnePlus 3 (codename "oneplus3"; unveiled on 14 June 2016; international release on 14 June 2016)
  • OnePlus 3T (codename "oneplus3t"; unveiled on 15 November 2016; international release on 28 November 2016)
  • OnePlus 5 (codename "cheeseburger"; unveiled on 20 June 2017; international release on 27 June 2017)
  • OnePlus 5T (codename "dumpling"; unveiled on 16 November 2017; international release on 21 November 2017)

OnePlus One[edit]

OnePlus One unboxing

The company's first product was the highly anticipated OnePlus One. It was unveiled on 22 April 2014, and was touted as the "2014 Flagship Killer." The One had comparable, and in some ways better, specifications to other flagship phones of the year, while being sold at a significantly lower price at $299 for the 16 GB version or $349 for the 64 GB version.[14] The One also debuted the infamous invite system, which ensured that the company didn't take more orders than it was capable of shipping.

The OnePlus One had several minor hardware issues at launch, which reportedly was corrected in later batches of the phone.

OnePlus 2[edit]

The OnePlus 2 was the successor to the company's highly successful first phone. It was unveiled a little over a year after the One, on 27 July 2015. It was highly promoted as "2016 Flagship killer". There were very high expectations for the second generation OnePlus phones, partly because of the company managed to create a big amount of hype for the upcoming phone. One of the marketing channels used, was YouTube tech reviewer MKBHD, who was sent a unit, which he covered in detail leading up to the launch.

The OnePlus 2 had specifications comparable to other flagship phones of the time, including the highly criticized Qualcomm Snapdragon 810, though OnePlus had decided to leave out an NFC chip, as it didn't see mobile payment being an essential feature at the time.[15] The phone was also one of the first Android devices to sport a USB type C port over the older micro USB port.[16]

OnePlus X[edit]

The OnePlus X was OnePlus' entrance to the budget phone market, at 5 inches instead of the One and 2's 5.5 inches. The phone was unveiled on 29 October 2015. The phone was sold at $249, and consisted mostly of the same internal components as the year and half old OnePlus One, but had an AMOLED display.

OnePlus 3[edit]

The OnePlus 3 was unveiled on 14 June 2016. The 3 was the company's first "metal unibody" phone. The phone launched with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820, 6 GB of RAM and 64 GB of UFS 2.0 storage.[17] The phone was well regarded amongst critics, mostly for its low price and high specifications.

OnePlus 3T[edit]

The OnePlus 3T was unveiled on 15 November 2016 as a minor upgrade to the still relatively new OnePlus 3. The upgrade consisted the use of a newer SoC; the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 was replaced with the Snapdragon 821. Also introduced were a higher-capacity battery, 64 or 128 GB of storage and 16 MP front facing camera. The phone launched in the US on 22 November 2016 and in Europe on 28 November 2016.

OnePlus 5[edit]

The OnePlus 5 was unveiled on 20 June 2017. It launched with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835, a dual-lens camera setup, up to 8 GB RAM, and up to 128 GB of storage. It was released in two colors: Midnight Black and Slate Gray. A third limited edition color, Soft Gold was released on 7 August 2017.[18] Another special edition color was launched on 20 September 2017, in collaboration with Castelbajac.[19]

OnePlus 5T[edit]

The OnePlus 5T was unveiled on 16 November 2017, as the successor to the OnePlus 5. It features the same Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 SoC and storage options as its predecessor. Highlights include a more immersive 6" 18:9 display, a new "Face Unlock" facial recognition method, and an improved dual-lens camera.

Controversies[edit]

OnePlus has suffered many controversies, both regarding the company's operations and their devices.

"Smash the Past" campaign[edit]

On 25 April 2014, OnePlus began its "Smash the Past" campaign.[20] The promotion asked selected participants to destroy their phones on video in an effort to purchase the OnePlus One for $1 (US). Due to confusion, several videos were published by unselected users misinterpreting the promotion and destroying their phones before the promotion start date.[21][22]

The campaign was heavily criticized for environmental waste and safety concerns, due to batteries and phone components posing potential hazards to participants destroying their phones.[23][24] OnePlus allowed the winners to donate the old phone.[25] There were 140,000 entrants in the contest with 100 winners.[26]

Warranty rejections[edit]

  • OnePlus One issue with yellow display band at the bottom of the screen which affected some units was not covered under warranty. A similar issue was reported for Oppo Find 7 and Oppo Find 7a and Oppo covered it under warranty.[27][28]

Ladies First[edit]

On 13 August 2014, OnePlus hosted a contest to give invites, which were hard to come by at the time, to their women forum members. Users were asked to post a photo of themselves with the OnePlus logo, images would be shared in the forum and could be ´liked´ by other forum members.[29] Hours after being announced, the campaign was stopped because of the sexist implications in the election process. OnePlus stated that a few 'rogue' employees created the campaign.[citation needed]

Ban in India[edit]

On 16 December 2014, The Delhi High Court banned the import and sales of OnePlus One phones in India following a lawsuit by Micromax alleging it has exclusivity for shipping phones with Cyanogen OS software in India.[30]

As of 21 December 2014, the banning of import and selling of the device in India has been lifted. The device continues to be shipped with Cyanogen OS; however, a customized version of Android specially designed by OnePlus and named OxygenOS has been released, allowing later OnePlus devices to be sold in India. [31][32]

Cease of operations in Indonesia[edit]

In June 2016, OnePlus made the decision to pull out of the Indonesian market due to local regulations for imported 4G smartphones restricting sales of the OnePlus 2.[33] After-sales support such as warranty claims and repairs for the OnePlus One and X were taken over by PT Multi Mobile Indonesia.

OnePlus 2 launch invite issue[edit]

In advance of the OnePlus 2 launch, OnePlus assured customers that obtaining invites would be easier, and handsets would ship a lot quicker than with the OnePlus One. However, in a public apology, Carl Pei admitted the company had "messed up" the launch, and that OnePlus "only began shipping meaningful quantities [the week of 10 September 2015], nearly a month after [the] initial targeted shipping date."[34][35]

OnePlus customer support[edit]

In 2014 and 2015, OnePlus customer support was criticized on various tech communities on the internet, including Reddit, XDA Developers and OnePlus' own forum.[citation needed] Many customers claim to have had to wait days or even weeks for replies from the support staff once they opened a ticket. Other customers were denied their warranty covered repairs due to water or other usage related damage, when in fact they could prove that there was no such damage before they shipped off their phone for repair.[36]

OnePlus improved customer support in 2017, by not only increasing the number of customer service staff but by adding local language support.[37]

OnePlus 2 software updates[edit]

Despite promising 24 months of software updates and telling consumers that the OnePlus 2 would be updated to Android 7 "Nougat", it was eventually confirmed that this was not to happen, leaving the device on the older Android 6.0.1.[38]

OnePlus Type-C Cable[edit]

After several weeks of customer complaints on OnePlus forums and on Reddit, Google engineer Benson Leung showed that the USB Type-C cable and USB Type-C-to-Micro-USB adapter offered by OnePlus do not conform to the USB specification. OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei on 26 November 2015 admitted that the cable and adapter indeed don't conform to the USB specification, and offered refunds (although not for cables bundled with the OnePlus 2 phone).[39][40][41]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Xiang, Tracey (13 January 2014). "Chinese Smartphone Startup OnePlus Aims at Developed Markets". TechNode. Archived from the original on 23 April 2014. Retrieved 2 May 2014. 
  2. ^ "OnePlus: setting its sights on changing the world with affordable smartphones". The Guardian. 10 July 2015. Retrieved 13 July 2015. 
  3. ^ F., Alan (26 April 2014). "Is OnePlus a wholly owned subsidiary of Oppo? Chinese document suggests that the answer is yes". phonearena.com. 
  4. ^ "OnePlus Responds To OPPO Controversy". Gizchina.com. 28 April 2014. 
  5. ^ a b c "Meet the One, OnePlus' $299 Nexus killer". Engadget. Retrieved 3 February 2015. 
  6. ^ a b Kastrenakes, Jacob (16 December 2013). "From Oppo to OnePlus: a new company wants to build the next great smartphone". The Verge. Retrieved 14 February 2014. 
  7. ^ "OnePlus to Delhi High Court: Micromax's Cyanogen OS Is Different". NDTV Gadgets. Retrieved 3 February 2015. 
  8. ^ Dent, Steve (7 January 2014). "Cyanogen will partner with OnePlus on its debut phone, the 'OnePlus One'". Engadget. Retrieved 14 February 2014. 
  9. ^ "OnePlus One launched in India for $355 on Amazon". GSMArena. Retrieved 3 February 2015. 
  10. ^ "OnePlus Launches in Indonesia through Exclusive Lazada Partnership - OnePlus Blog". 
  11. ^ "Oppo unveils Chinese actress Mini Yang M as brand ambassador". GSM INSIDER. Retrieved 17 April 2015. 
  12. ^ "OnePlus goes invite free". Wired. Retrieved 25 June 2016. 
  13. ^ "Free loop VR headset". Fortune. Retrieved 25 June 2016. 
  14. ^ "Press Releases - OnePlus". oneplus.net. 
  15. ^ "OnePlus Says It Dropped NFC From The OnePlus 2 Because OnePlus One Owners Weren't Using It". 27 July 2015. 
  16. ^ "List of phones with usb type c connectivity (as of June 2016)". 
  17. ^ "OnePlus 3". oneplus.net. 
  18. ^ "The 'Soft Gold' OnePlus 5 is a pretty phone, with one big downside". Android Central. 7 August 2017. Retrieved 7 August 2017. 
  19. ^ England, Rachel (2017-09-20). "The OnePlus 5 got a whimsical French makeover". Engadget. Retrieved 2017-09-22. 
  20. ^ "Phone Smash". OnePlus. Archived from the original on 27 April 2014. Retrieved 27 April 2014. 
  21. ^ "OnePlus One 'Smash the Past" contest sees hopefuls smashing their phones prematurely". Retrieved 27 April 2014. 
  22. ^ Smith, Chris (25 April 2014). "Warning: You really shouldn't smash your phone for a OnePlus One just yet". BGR. Retrieved 9 August 2017. 
  23. ^ "OnePlus One "Smash the Past" is a Pretty Bad Contest". Retrieved 27 April 2014. 
  24. ^ Hearn, Mark (2 May 2014). "OnePlus now accepting donations in lieu of phone smashing". 9to5Google. Retrieved 9 August 2017. 
  25. ^ "OnePlus revises their 'smash' contest to allow winners to donate perfectly good phones to charity instead". Android Central. Retrieved 2 May 2014. 
  26. ^ "OnePlus revises their 'smash' contest to allow winners to donate perfectly good phones to charity instead". Android Central. 
  27. ^ "OnePlus accused of not honoring warranty on yellow screen issue". Phone Arena. Retrieved 1 July 2017. 
  28. ^ "OnePlus Forums: Reply from @vikas during OnePlus official AMA on Reddit". OnePlus Forums. Retrieved 1 July 2017. 
  29. ^ "OnePlus asks women to participate in degrading contest to get a smartphone". Verge. Retrieved 13 August 2014. 
  30. ^ "Delhi HC bans import & sales of OnePlus One smartphone in India". AndroidOS.in. 
  31. ^ "Micromax & OnePlus resolve legal dispute; OnePlus handsets will get Cyanogen updates". 
  32. ^ "Cyanogen to continue support for OnePlus One in India". 
  33. ^ "Chinese phone maker OnePlus quits Indonesia - Techinasia.com". www.techinasia.com. Retrieved 2017-11-29. 
  34. ^ Pei, Carl (10 September 2015). "Sorry for the delay guys". OnePlus forums. Archived from the original on 25 September 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2015. 
  35. ^ McCann, John (11 September 2015). "OnePlus admits it messed up the OnePlus 2 launch". TechRadar. Retrieved 29 September 2015. 
  36. ^ "Has anyone gone through the RMA process NOT been accused of water damage? : oneplus". reddit. 
  37. ^ Savov, Vlad (6 June 2017). "OnePlus touts improvements to customer care in anticipation of OnePlus 5". The Verge. Archived from the original on 7 June 2017. Retrieved 7 June 2017. 
  38. ^ Carlon, Kris (10 June 2017). "OnePlus finally confirms no Nougat update for the OnePlus 2". Android Authority. Retrieved 11 June 2017. 
  39. ^ "OnePlus Offers Explanation, Refunds In Type-C 'Cablegate'". Retrieved 29 November 2015. 
  40. ^ "OnePlus admits that it's selling dodgy USB Type-C cables and adapters". Retrieved 29 November 2015. 
  41. ^ "In response to the Type-C cable discussions". Retrieved 29 November 2015. 

External links[edit]