While OnePlus as a company is still a relatively small startup, arising from a group of just ten individuals back in December of last year, yet they have managed to create a vortex of seismic proportions for at least two major manufacturers in high-end smartphone space; HTC and Sony. Read on to learn why:
Today we finally had a definitively clear view of the what the OnePlus One device would look like, with a passionate, simplistic and unmistakably Steve Jobs-esque presentation from CEO Pete Lau, who proceeded to deliver a number of serious kidney blows to the competition. The slick good looks of the OnePlus One is due in part to a fantastic 5.5 inch screen which crammed into a what is essentially a 5 inch chassis. This device reeks of top quality manufacturing, being filled with truly high-end spec components including an outstanding camera and a customized CyanogenMod OS that we are sure will be appeal to discerning geeks around the world. What more could anyone ask for?
Now ask yourself: Do these prices seem competitive to you?
If a deadly and disruptive combination of top, top hardware coupled with a cool and edgy OS plus a wholly independent distribution chain was not enough, the real killer blow was the price points that OnePlus are promising. The ‘Flagship Killer’ marketing certainly seems appropriate, but when we then consider exactly which flagship devices, we must surely point to Sony and HTC – two companies that will be holding emergency board meetings tomorrow morning.
In the top tier, we see only Samsung and Apple really having the both the market share, brand awareness and financial clout to stave off the threat of OnePlus. In the case of Sony and HTC, we see two companies that have struggled to maintain a solid bottom line in recent financial quarters. Sony’s recent decision to exit the mobile PC market and abandon its VAIO brand reveals a company struggling with the threat of cheap alternatives, while HTC has trodden a very rocky road lately in terms of financial performance.
Sure you could argue that both Sony and HTC have seen positive results from their Xperia and HTC One flagship phones, but the question we are raising is that OnePlus are now offering devices that can and will compete with 64GB, 5 Inch Xperias and HTC Ones… but at almost half the price!
If OnePlus can (literally) deliver the goods with this OnePlus one device, that could mean a million plus units out the door, which is a million units that HTC and Sony will have missed out on. That would be the definition of a company having a disruptive influence on the market.
When we started writing and talking about an unknown Shenzhen startup that were in the midst of developing a ‘Flagship Smartphone Killer’, few took us seriously. However, now that the impact of today’s launch has begun to ripple across the oceans of the web… we sense fear.
I’m glad I’m not an executive board member of Sony or HTC, two massive corporations that could now have another aggressive player
nipping at their heels devouring their feet whole. Sony and HTC have serious decisions to make in the very near future. A future where a startup like OnePlus is possible. Exciting times ahead.
This article was written in collaboration with Sascha Pallenberg at www.mobilegeeks.de