The OnePlus 5 is the most successful OnePlus launch till date, and if you’ve been wondering, which variant of the smartphone is more popular, we finally have an answer. Gadgets 360 caught up with OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei earlier this month where we had an in-depth chat about all things OnePlus 5, and one of the things we asked him is which variant - 6GB/ 64GB or 8GB/ 128GB - of the smartphone is more popular?
"If you look at the aggregate, globally, more 128 models are sold than the 64," Pei said. "In India, it's not as much but way more than we thought. In India, 64GB is more popular, but [the demand for 128GB] is much more than I expected."
"That's I think where I made a mistake, I underestimated the [demand for] the 128-gig device. Because we were always afraid, especially in India, we're selling that one at Rs. 38,000," he explains. "[When] we launched a couple of years ago that was a very scary price point, and hearing from the rest of the market - from the other players - it’s also a price point where they're not doing a lot of volumes. So I think we underestimated the demand for the 128."
At the OnePlus 5 India launch, Syzmon Kopec, Product Manager at OnePlus had told Gadgets 360 that the company was exploring Samsung Dex-like technology that converges the mobile and desktop experiences. We asked Pei if the company had made any progress since then.
"They might be looking into it, but I don't think it's something we're gonna launch very soon," Pei replied. "So our philosophy when it comes to the products is 'It's not important for us to be first, it's better for us to wait until the experience is mature enough to actually be useful.’"
"As you recall," he continued, "the dual camera has been around for a very long time, even before the iPhone. Only after iPhone [7 Plus] came out that the experience became more and more mature, and other brands started doing more and more of it. So personally, I think like using your phone as a desktop is still some time away."
Instead, Pei said, OnePlus is focusing on improving the core experience for its users.
"We are looking at some localisation like improvements for instance like we released the Paytm partnership with the [OnePlus] 5," he explained. "But most of our work - the vast majority - still goes into the core experience and optimising. So as an example when you launch an app on the 5, the CPU core[s] they all open and this is by design, so you launch app much quicker and then it cools down again to become automatic. So these small things that can really improve the day-to-day experience. Scrolling - you said it was laggy - but actually, it's one of the smoothest experiences if you benchmark [against] its peers."
OnePlus 5 units sold in India are being manufactured by Oppo, and we asked Pei to elaborate on that aspect of the relationship with its parent company.
"We use the Oppo factory [to manufacture in India] and we manage the Oppo factory," he said. "In China, a lot of our phones are also manufactured by the Oppo factory. So it's like [if] I [were to go] to Foxconn and [tell] them to manufacture our products."
"It's a very complex ecosystem, for instance, a lot of the back housing on our phones are made by Foxconn," Pei said. "So, different things are made by different people and we assemble it somewhere else."