Oppo N1 ‘Cameraphone’ Set for September Launch

by: Darcy LaCouveeAugust 19, 2013

Oppo N1 Lense Close up Press Render

I remember braving the journey to Beijing at the beginning of December last year, to meet a company that I wasn’t previously familiar with. With rumors swirling, I was curious to see what sort of quality a relatively little known player could bring to the table. Having travelled the world for the past several years attending technology events across the globe, I’ve been very privileged to witness first hand the very latest, most cutting edge consumer electronics created by the biggest consumer technology companies on the planet.

I was blown away by the world's first smartphone with a 1080p display - the Oppo Find 5.

I was blown away by the world’s first smartphone with a 1080p display – the Oppo Find 5.

With this in mind, I ventured far East. Shocked to see snow in China, I had caught a bad a very serious fever on the plane, and found myself at -10 degrees in the snow as I attempted to find the location of the launch party. Luckily, I made it. I was in!

After the well conducted launch, I was given substantial hands on time to experience one of the world’s first 1080p smartphones – the Oppo Find 5. The sharpness of the display blew me away, and the use of quality materials left me impressed.

Bringing us forward to today, we have Oppo lusting for more, and for good reason. The Oppo Find 5 is still one of our favorite devices of 2012/2013, and I’ve had dozens of people ask me more about it, every time I’ve brandished it. This, my friends, is a good sign.

We were the first to break the Oppo N1, and have recently discovered that it will be launched towards the end of September.


What is the Oppo N1, you may ask? It’s Oppo’s answer to 2013’s obsession with higher quality imaging. Samsung has their Galaxy Zoom series. Nokia has their Lumia 1020. And now even Sony is rumored to be releasing some serious looking lenses for their upcoming Honami / i1 series, which we believe we will see at IFA 2013, in Berlin. But what- there’s more. HTC has their Ultrapixel, and Motorola has their ‘Clearpixel.’ While some might argue that today’s smartphones capture great pictures already, there is always room for improvement. There must be a market here, right?

While few will see the Oppo N1 outside of China, it’s likely that Oppo will continue to earn good favor in the hearts and minds of millions if it continues on its trajectory that it embarked on with the debut of the Find 5.

So, what makes this the real deal? Today, Oppo announced the N1 via their official Weibo account, thereby legitimizing it to the world. As with all rumors and leaks, official details are sparse. The most credible rumors point to a 13MP ‘Owl’ image sensor, and Xenon flash. The ‘Owl’ sensors is reputed to offer best-in-class low light performance (a claim we’ve heard before – so take it as it were). We’ll be digging deeper in the days ahead to find out the technology behind this alleged ‘Owl’ sensor.

Would you ever buy a lens for your smartphone?

Would you ever buy a lens for your smartphone?

While there’s no word on specs, processor, or any of the other ‘meat and guts’ we look for as mobile technology enthusiasts, we do know that the N1 is supposed to be launched at a $480 price point. If Oppo can pack great technology, an amazing camera, and deliver it to consumers at a good price point, then they’ve got a winner on their hands. The 13MP camera in the Oppo Find 5 was an absolutely first rate image sensor from Sony, and the 1080p display was from JDI, so it’s unlikely they will skimp on the components this time around.

How much does photography on a smartphone matter to you? Any serious photographers in our midst? How much better can low light photography get in such a small sensor? As always, we love to hear your thoughts! Oppo is up against some very serious competition from Samsung, Sony, and Nokia. Does it have what it takes to go toe-to-toe with the majors?

  • Joshua

    First comment??!! Lol I don’t know why that excites me. Back to business, I really hope this goes well for Oppo. If it has strong specs and some pretty good low light performance, I don’t know why this wouldn’t dl good. But please Oppo, some world domination maybe?

    • Hey Joshua, thanks for this. I meant to say ‘one of the world’s first. It’ll be interesting to see what they bring to the table. They take this pretty seriously, so it should result in some nice competition, particularly in China, where only 10% of people have smartphones, and the rest are hungry for great products at rock bottom prices.

      • Joshua

        Well said :)

  • Rooney-

    I think its HTC’s Butterfly is the world’s first 1080p smartphone.

  • Ruz

    you cant win a competition with the camera itself, you need to add more spec to your list to call it as winner. If u just simply come out with camera phone and ignore the rest of the spec to cut the price then i have to simply wait for the other phone model or company to launch the same high end camera with all the extra bells and whistle to be in it.. we want bt4 le, global network connectivity, dual sim, fm radio, all gps chips, good screen with screen coating, good screen panels with features like Sony TriM, IR Blaster, big long battery, etc.

    others choice may differ but comon its good to have it at the end of the day

    • Ruz

      yea there is only one thing we can compromise in a phone and that is looks and somewhat screen size

  • Mike Hosc

    Will manafacturer bring “Oppo Find 5” phone into Singapore? Where will they sell then? Hope to see for myself. Thanks.

  • Vardan Nazaretyan

    They easily make the best smartphone. So the cameraphone should also be the best, if it’s made by OPPO.

  • MasterMuffin

    I actually prefer Oppo over all the manufacturers! Great design, great specs and their dev supporting and being part of the community is amazing (they even make posts of custom ROMs and kernel’s on their official pages!). I hope that they get big so that we can see if they’ll turn to evil or not :)

  • surethom

    Please come to the UK, I love sony sensors, but Sony always over compresses the image, & with a Xenon flash this would be my next phone if ONLY it comes to the UK.