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OnePlus CEO was surprised that fans didn't like the OnePlus X

Despite signs of demand for another mid-tier smartphone, Pete Lau believes that customers never really liked the OnePlus X.

Published onJuly 19, 2018

The OnePlus X.
  • OnePlus CEO Pete Lau answered fan questions in a recent interview.
  • Lau stated that the OnePlus X was the least fan-liked product, despite public comments showing otherwise.

On Monday, OnePlus shared an interview on its forums in which its CEO Pete Lau answered some questions from fans. Of course, it included things like how much he liked his job, which phone he was currently using, and what features might be added to future handsets. But what seemed odd was Lau’s suggestion that fans didn’t really like the OnePlus X.

Since you’re the CEO of the company, I need to ask you if there’s was a product you were expecting the fans to have a better reaction?
The OnePlus X. We aimed to create a best in class flagship-lite product, and although the community loved the design and thought the product was beautiful, most still preferred flagship devices. This reaffirmed our positioning as a flagship only company and culture.​

OnePlus has always marketed itself as a “flagship killer” by offering smartphones that had premium specs at mid-tier prices. But back in 2015, the company released the OnePlus X, an actual mid-tier smartphone for an even more discounted cost.

When the phone sold out half a year after its release, OnePlus stated that it would not be building a OnePlus X2 and would instead focus on flagships going forward.

Of course, sales performance is what really matters, and, as CEO, Pete Lau has better insight than anyone into how the OnePlus X performed in the market. That said, OnePlus fans have been clamoring for a second-gen OnePlus X. It got to the point that earlier this year a report came out that stated that OnePlus was working on such a device, it got some traction in tech media and comments sections. The company ended up denying the report and kept its word by only releasing the OnePlus 6 back in May.

OnePlus 6 review: the spiritual successor to the Nexus

After polling our readers, we found that an overwhelming number of you do want OnePlus to release a new mid-tier smartphone in the vein of OnePlus X.

While it seems to us that fans enjoyed the OnePlus X, the company seems to think otherwise. Should OnePlus reconsider its flagship focus? In today’s market where even some OnePlus flagships cost more than $600, it seems like releasing a mid-tier handset with a budget price tag would be a logical move.

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