Last year was good for OnePlus, with their ‘flagship killer’ OnePlus 5T being a record-breaking best-seller for the company. Now fans are curious as to how the OEM will follow up their success in 2018. At CES 2018, CEO Pete Lau and co-founder Carl Pei discussed the OnePlus 6, including the release date and chipset.

Lau and Pei sat down with CNet’s Roger Cheng for a revealing discussion concerning the Chinese OEM’s plans for the year. Although the OnePlus 6 wasn’t mentioned by name, the interview that contained some tantalizing hints about the next generation flagship killer. Here’s everything we know so far.

OnePlus 6: Price and availability

While it’s still too early to talk about price, Pete Lau did say that said the company would begin talks with US carriers this year. Given that the majority of US consumers obtain their phones through a carrier, striking such a deal is crucial for still-niche Chinese manufacturer to break into the mainstream.

Given the timeline, it seems unlikely that that this kind of deal would be ready in time for OnePlus’ next device. More realistically, an agreement reached this year could apply to a potential OnePlus 7 in 2018. But perhaps negotiations are further along than Lau and Pei are willing to let on right now.

Huawei, another rising star from China, hit a stumbling block on their path to dominance when a highly anticipated carrier deal with AT&T for their Mate 10 Pro fell through due to pressure from the US government. Could OnePlus steal a march on their more established countrymen and secure an American carrier before Huawei?

OnePlus 6: Release date

Lau also confirmed that the next OnePlus phone could arrive late in the second quarter of 2018 (so, around June), in line with the OnePlus 5’s release date last year. As for a potential OnePlus 6T, Lau stated that he was “not 100% sure” if OnePlus would release a second phone in 2018.

One might recall that last year, OnePlus kept us guessing about the 5T until almost the last minute. However, according to a leaked list of smartphones scheduled to carry the Snapdragon 845, both the OnePlus 6 and OnePlus 6T are scheduled for release with Qualcomm’s new chipset. 

The OnePlus 6 would be a significant challenger to the Samsung Galaxy S9. / © AndroidPIT

OnePlus 6: Technical specifications

Right now we don’t know all that much about what the OnePlus 6 will be carrying under the hood, but according to Pete Lau, the company has “no choice” but to use the Snapdragon 845 SoC. This appears to confirm the validity of the aforementioned list, unless the production schedule is somehow disrupted.

Interestingly, the OnePlus bosses won’t be touting artificial intelligence a major selling point for their next Snapdragon 845-powered phone. According to Lau, AI has “become a buzzword” with little to offer that the average user can appreciate. Given how much of a hot topic AI has become in the mobile world, that’s an interesting take from the Chinese up-and-comers.

While OnePlus has enjoyed record sales in 2017, their rise to prominence has also been dogged with some embarrassments, including multiple discoveries of hidden software in their OS which harvested unreasonable amount of data from their users without explicit permission.

Nonetheless for many users, including our own readers, the attractive pricing and premium features of the OnePlus phones outweigh concerns about privacy, and the OnePlus 5T was the fastest- and best-selling device in the company’s history. OnePlus has followed up on its success by releasing special limited editions of the flagship killer, including a Star Wars edition and the new Sandstone White edition.

Are you looking forward to the OnePlus 6? What features do you expect from it?


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