OnePlus was the nobody that took the smartphone world by storm. Founded back in 2013, no-one could have expected a no-name company to wage war with the likes of Samsung and LG, but OnePlus dared to do exactly that – and the gamble paid off.
The key to its success was gloriously simple: OnePlus delivered premium smartphones for half the price of its rivals, and now it’s set to do it all again with its fourth phone, the as-yet unannounced OnePlus 3, in 2016.
OnePlus 3: Release date
“A summer 2016 release for the OnePlus 3 is on the cards.”
Unlike several manufacturers we could mention, OnePlus hasn’t developed a particularly predictable release schedule – if anything, it has something of a reputation for production delays, and shipment dates that slip by several weeks (sorry, OnePlus – we love you really).
It’s a safe bet that we’ll be getting a new OnePlus phone this year, though. The OnePlus One landed worldwide in June 2014; the OnePlus 2 arrived on 11 August 2015 and the OnePlus X was released on the 5 November 2015. A summer release for the OnePlus 3 is on the cards.
OnePlus 3: Rumours and design
Some design renders of the OnePlus 3 appeared online in late 2015, and the same source confirmed the – admittedly unsurprising – detail that the phone would be powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 820 chipset.
It turned out, however, that the renders weren’t official hardware at all. In fact, they were created by the rather talented Mladen over at designedbyhege.wordpress.com – a site that mocks up imaginary forthcoming smartphones purely for the fun of it. They are rather pretty, though.
Similarly, a video trailer for the OnePlus 3 surfaced in December 2015, but although some sites also tried to pass this off as a leaked trailer, it was nothing of the sort. Again, this was the work of one clever individual, entirely unaffiliated with OnePlus, called Jermaine Smit. Check out his impressive handiwork below.
OnePlus 3: Specifications
The OnePlus strategy is simple: release a phone with flagship specifications for a fraction of the price of its competitors. The OnePlus 3 will follow the same recipe, which means you can expect some obvious upgrades over the OnePlus 2.
We’d put money on Qualcomm’s latest SnapDragon 820 SoC taking centre stage. In terms of raw performance, the Snapdragon 820 is a big, big step forward. You can click here to read our full review of the hardware, but it’s safe to say that it offers a dramatic improvement across the board.
“There’s much more to Snapdragon 820 than just performance, however.”
There’s much more to Snapdragon 820 than just raw performance improvements, however. It promises to be 30% more efficient than the previous generations, and image and video processing capabilities are dramatically improved, too. Add in a new modem component that supports the latest high-speed mobile networks, and support for the as-yet unratified 802.11ad Wi-Fi standard, and there’s plenty to get excited about.
Elsewhere, you can expect OnePlus to deliver a balance of features that keep pace with the premium smartphone pack. It’s doubtful that it’ll waste cash on a 4K screen, but a WQHD panel would seem like a logical upgrade to the Full HD screen of the OnePlus 2.
And given Samsung’s decision to reinstate microSD in its forthcoming Samsung Galaxy S7 phones, it wouldn’t be at all surprising to see OnePlus go one step further and throw in a removable battery and microSD slot. We can but hope.
We’ll be adding more rumours (and debunking them), and collecting all the information we can on the upcoming OnePlus 3 as and when we get it. Got something you really want to see in the OnePlus 3? Let us know in the comments.
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