The folks at OnePlus have been building up hype around their first smartphone launch, and today the OnePlus One finally became official. Announced at an event in China, the Magnesium constructed One weighs just 162g, has a recessed bezel round the edges, what it says are "beautiful contours" and a ton of beefy hardware inside.
The price was also built up ahead of launch and OnePlus hasn't disappointed on this front. The 16GB version will be available unlocked and SIM-free for just $299 while the 64GB is an extremely impressive $349. In Europe those prices translate to £229/£269 and €269/€299 which on the face of it alone is extremely good value for the hardware alone. It's set to become available sometime in Q2.
OnePlus is founded by the founder of Oppo. Unsurprisingly, the OnePlus One looks like a Find 5 successor, which can only be seen as a good thing in my view - especially because it ships with CyanogenMod by default. The end result is that I'm pretty sure that the best Android phones are currently not made by Samsung or HTC - but by tiny Chinese manufacturers.
I've said it before and I'll say it again: if I were Samsung, HTC, or Sony - I'd be afraid of these companies. Great build quality, unique design, top-notch specifications, and usually great community support - at half the price of Samsung/HTC/etc. flagships, fully unlocked.
Two things will happen. Expect increased lobbying spending on discrediting Chinese manufacturers, and I expect more and and more public talk about how Chinese electronics cannot be trusted.