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OnePlus 2 officially announced: everything you need to know
The OnePlus 2, the self-dubbed “2016 flagship killer” has arrived, and we’re here to tell you all about it. From the OnePlus 2’s specs, to its main features, and details about its price and availability, we’ve got you covered.
It’s July of 2015, and OnePlus is feverishly plotting murder. The weapon? OnePlus 2, its second ever phone. The target? The elite of the industry: next year’s iPhone, Samsung’s high-flying Galaxies, HTC’s metal beasts, and others. The M.O.? Cutthroat pricing, rogue marketing.
Crime doesn’t pay, but there’s someone who will profit from OnePlus’ killing spree. That’s you, the regular smartphone buyer, looking for a quality device that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. Provided you can get an invite, that is.
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OnePlus 2 specs and features
OnePlus has drip-fed us many of the OnePlus 2’s specs and features, so most of this section isn’t a surprise. Here’s a rundown:
5.5-inch LCD, Full HD
1.8GHz Snapdragon 810
3 or 4 GB (depending on storage option)
16 or 64GB storage
US GSM: 850, 900, 1800, 1900MHz WCDMA: Bands: 1/2/4/5/8 FDD-LTE: Bands: 1/2/4/5/7/8/12/17EU/India GSM: 850, 900, 1800, 1900MHz WCDMA: Bands: 1/2/5/8 FDD-LTE: Bands: 1/3/5/7/8/20
OxygenOS based on Android 5.1
151.8 x 74.9 x 9.85 mm, 175g
The OnePlus 2’s specs should please a lot of people, even with the predictable absence of a removable battery and microSD card, and the rather controversial inclusion of a Snapdragon 810 v2.1 processor. OnePlus has tried to put some distance between itself and the PR troubles that have plagued HTC, by suggesting that its own Snapdragon 810 chip is better than the one in other phones, though that may not actually be true. Regardless, the 810 should be a very capable processor, even with throttling involved. For some actual impressions of the performance of the device, check out our OnePlus 2 hands-on.
We salute the inclusion of 4GB of RAM in the 64GB version, though the 16GB of storage in the starting version (3GB of RAM) is slightly disappointing. A very nice addition is the 3,300 mAh battery, even if its inclusion contributed to the OnePlus 2’s 9.85 millimeter profile and 175 grams in weight.
The OnePlus 2 is one of the first smartphones to feature a USB Type-C port, and that’s not just a bragging right. Type-C is the future – it’s convenient, compact, universal, and versatile. Its inclusion is an argument for Carl Pei’s bold statement from a recent interview that the OnePlus is a future-proof phone.
On the front, the OnePlus 2 features a generously sized home button/fingerprint sensor, that OnePlus claims is faster than the TouchID sensor on the iPhone. This is a touch-based sensor (no swiping needed) and you can associate multiple fingerprints to it. More about it in the hands-on. Flanking it are the capacitive keys, though you can switch to an on-screen nav bar if you prefer it.
One surprise hardware feature of the OnePlus 2 is the “Alert Slider,” which is a slider placed on the left side of the phone, that lets you switch from full notifications, to priority mode, to silent mode. Nifty! That’s not something you see on Android devices, so we’re excited to give it a try.
Update: NFC is one of those features than we tend to forget about, simply because most modern smartphones have it. Well, the OnePlus 2 does not feature NFC, a very curious choice that OnePlus explained by stating that most OnePlus One users have not used the feature.
OnePlus 2 design, build, and customization
There’s now an aluminum-magnesium frame going around the sides of the phone, while the buttons and other accents are stainless steel. It’s a great addition, that should make the device feel even nicer. The camera on the back has been moved slightly towards the center of the device, which takes a while to get used to, and the same can be said about the Samsung-like home button on the front.
The overall look is interesting – sleek, without feeling exceedingly expensive. And that’s probably because OnePlus mixed the metal with plastic or natural wood. The OnePlus 2 will be available in the following finishes:
- Sandstone Black
- Black Apricot
The OnePlus One’s Silk White appears to be gone, but note we don’t know yet which of these finishes will be available at launch. The StyleSwap covers are now supposed to be easier to replace, without any special tools required.
OnePlus 2 software
The OnePlus 2 runs Oxygen OS, a custom ROM based on Android 5.1. OnePlus hired most of the key members of the Paranoid Android custom ROM team to make Oxygen OS a real product, and by all accounts, they have been hard at work at it. That said, the time was short, the team was new, and the expectations were sky-high, so it remains to be seen just how good Oxygen OS turns out to be.
Among the key additions to stock Android included in Oxygen OS are:
- Audio Tuner, which lets you select sound presets based on your activity
- off-screen gestures (draw a “V” to open the flashlight)
- easy notification access
- custom icon pack support
- dark mode
- app permissions
- an enhanced file manager
- and a new feature called Shelf
Shelf allows you to swipe from the right on the homescreen to open up a panel with two widgets giving you access to the most used apps and favorite contacts. It’s billed as a beta feature for now, and OnePlus says more functionality will be coming in time.
With these new features, it remains to be seen whether Oxygen OS is stable and reasonably bug-free. You can get an impression of it from our hands-on, with more to come in the review.
OnePlus 2 price, availability, and invite system
The OnePlus 2’s price is probably the most important factor that will determine its sales success, and fortunately, OnePlus delivered, again:
- The OnePlus 2 64GB will cost $389
- The OnePlus 2 16GB will cost $329
That’s slightly more than the launch price of the One, but arguably, you get more for that money.
As for the OnePlus 2 release date, the OnePlus 2 64GB will be available with an invite from August 11 in the US and EU. The 16GB version will be available “later.”
Yes, you will still need an invite to buy a OnePlus 2, but OnePlus says the process will be a lot less painful this year. The company said it tweaked the way it distributes invites and that it secured a lot more initial inventory, though considering that it grossly underestimated demand last year, we’ll believe it when we see it. Still, let’s give OnePlus the benefit of the doubt, and hopefully the OnePlus 2 will land is as many hands as possible, as fast as possible.
There you have it – all the OnePlus 2 essentials. For more, including hands-on videos, check out our other coverage:
2016 Flagship Killer Unveiled: Meet the OnePlus 2
OnePlus Doubles Down on Design, Power and Innovation for the OnePlus 2, from $329
SAN FRANCISCO, July 27, 2015 – OnePlus, a global technology startup, today announced its latest flagship product, the much anticipated OnePlus 2. Following the global success of last year’s OnePlus One, the latest offering reaffirms OnePlus’ commitment to the highest level of craftsmanship in the industry today. The OnePlus 2 boasts top of the line specs, one of the best cameras on the market, beautiful design and the adoption of state of the art technology.
“From day one, we’ve prioritized our product and our community above all else – we carefully listened to our users’ feedback and incorporated suggestions in building the OnePlus 2.” said OnePlus Founder and CEO, Pete Lau. “We chose premium materials, the highest performing components and forward thinking technology to make this an unparalleled user experience.”
Specs that Impress
The OnePlus 2’s aluminum-magnesium alloy frame and jewelry-grade stainless steel accents encase a vibrant, full HD 5.5” IPS LCD In-Cell display. The OnePlus 2’s display outperforms in
direct sunlight with 178 degrees of crystal clear viewing angles. Noticeably more solid and durable, at just 175 grams, the OnePlus 2 is easy and natural to hold. A 3300mAh lithium polymer
battery powers the device throughout the day, and as a dual-sim device the OnePlus 2 simultaneously supports two Nano SIM cards with 4G LTE capability.
The 64-bit Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 810 SoC is the fastest processor on the market. With up to 64GB of storage and eMMC 5.0 flash memory, the OnePlus 2 is lightning quick. Paired with up
to 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM, the OnePlus 2 powers all your apps, games and videos.
Capture Your World
The OnePlus 2 puts extraordinary digital photography power right in your pocket. The 13 megapixel rear facing camera boasts 6 physical lenses, powerful dual LED flash, and f/2.0
aperture. Perhaps most impressive is the sensor, which contains large 1.3 µm light-collecting pixels to deliver low-light shots like you haven’t seen before.
The OnePlus 2 camera has been engineered for improved clarity and stability, accomplished with the addition of an advanced Optical Image Stabilization system. Rear mounted laser technology
sharpens and focuses the camera in just .33 milliseconds and the wide-angle 5 megapixel front-facing camera ensures every angle is covered.
The OnePlus 2 is a continuation of the smooth curves and clean lines that defined the OnePlus One. A striking yet subtle floating display and metal chamfered edges add elegance and solidity
to the outer frame, also making the OnePlus 2 easy to hold and comfortable in the hand. In addition to OnePlus’ signature Sandstone Black, consumers now have access to a range of
covers including actual wood built Bamboo, Black Apricot, Rosewood and even Kevlar.
Ahead of the Curve
Equipped with a USB Type-C charging port, OnePlus is paving the way for the adoption of USB Type-C technology, the latest in charging and data transfer. Taking it one step further, the
OnePlus charging cable uses patented technology making the Type-A side reversible as well. The OnePlus 2 is equipped with a fingerprint scanner, adding premium security and convenience.
Users can now wake and unlock the device with one of five stored fingerprints in less than half a second. Additionally, the OnePlus 2 features an alert slider for quick access to custom notification settings. Unprecedented on an Android device, the alert slider can silence the device with a simple click.
Innovative operating system – OxygenOS
The OnePlus 2 is the first device in the world to ship with OnePlus’ own operating system, OxygenOS. “With the OnePlus 2, we’re making a bet on the future, and doubling down on a holistic product experience,” said OnePlus Co-founder, Carl Pei. “We’re excited for what our fans have to say.” OxygenOS, based on Android 5.1, is a refreshing take on the pure Android experience. Subtle customizations like on screen gestures, dark mode, the ability to switch between hardware and capacitive buttons and toggle quick settings are baked in throughout the OS. Loaded with custom apps including Camera, Audio Tuner and File Manager, OxygenOS delivers a light, secure take on Android.
Pricing and availability
The 64GB OnePlus 2 will be available with an invite in the United States and European Union starting August 11 for $389. The 16GB OnePlus 2 with 3GB of LPDDR4 RAM will be available later for $329.
Fans can visit one of nine pop up experience centers located around the world on July 31 st to sign up for an invite and be one of the first in the world to see the OnePlus 2. Users can also tune in to OnePlus’ social media channels starting August 1st for a chance to get an invite.
OnePlus is a technology startup committed to bringing the best possible technology to users around the world. Created around the mantra, “Never Settle”, OnePlus creates exquisitely designed devices with premium build quality and high performance hardware. For more information, please visit oneplus.net.
What’s your take?
So, are you impressed with the OnePlus 2 or are you disappointed? What do you love about the new phone, and what do you hate?