Here’s what happened: The OnePlus 9 series was supposed to go official on March 23. *Checks calendar*, yeah, it’s not March 23. Just after the virtual event announcement, rumors started circulating that Apple might have an event or announce products on the same day. Not to be potentially overshadowed, OnePlus is basically saying: “Screw it, here’s what our new phones look like” a week early.
Straight from OnePlus’s official Twitter, here’s the OnePlus 9 Pro in a “Morning Mist” color from basically every angle, leaving nothing to the imagination:
Done looking at the photos of this glossy phone? We sincerely hope this doesn’t mean the end to the matte glass finish that OnePlus uses on the 8 Pro and has used for the last few years.
Founder and CEO Pete Lau has been on a tear over the past few days teasing and hyping up the OnePlus 9 series’ Hasselblad cameras (here’s a full breakdown of everything we know about the new cameras).
This full set of photos confirms the design rumors and corroborates the massive leak and image dump from WinFuture last week.
The OnePlus 9 Pro is going to be the phone to pay attention to since it’s going to be The Spec Phone, but there will also be a regular OnePlus 9, now confirmed to come in a Winter Mist that looks like purple/lavender.
Talking big game — There’s an astronomical amount of hype for the OnePlus 9 Pro and its Hasselblad cameras. Lau is firing off tweets about the camera’s new features like there’s no tomorrow. Aside from the Sony IMX789 sensor and 50-megapixel ultra-wide “freeform” lens that reduces distortion, Lau’s also shared that there’s going to be a tilt-shift mode, DOL-HDR for video, focus peaking (whoa!), 12-bit RAW photo capture for greater dynamic range in post, and more.
Lau’s even shared a blind test comparison for low-light photography, suggesting he’s confident in the OnePlus 9 series’ ability to compete with other flagship phones. If I were to guess, the first photo might be from the iPhone 12 Pro Max, the second might be the OnePlus 9 Pro, and the third might be from the Galaxy S21 Ultra. (Just my personal guesses and I could be wrong. As of this writing, the second photo has the most Twitter votes for OnePlus.)
This excessive hyping is nothing new for OnePlus whose own motto “Never Settle” is the definition of hype. This is all friendly trash talk so long as OnePlus delivers on its claims. And up until the 8 Pro, OnePlus’ cameras never lived up to the hype.
So we now know almost everything there is to know about the OnePlus 9 Pro and its cameras. OnePlus and Lau will no doubt continue to share details all this week until March 23 when the only thing left to announce will probably be pricing and launch date.
Is OnePlus going to walk in and kick Apple and Samsung’s asses with its Hasselblad cameras on the OnePlus 9 series? We’ll have to wait and see, but boy do I love the competition. We could be at the very start of a new era of smartphone cameras that push imaging to the next level.