LONDON -- OnePlus, the Chinese smartphone startup, has launched its latest smartphone, the OnePlus X, a smaller, cheaper and sleeker version of its "flagship killer" OnePlus 2, which arrived earlier this year.
The OnePlus X was launched in London on Thursday morning and will go on sale through the same invite process in which the original OnePlus One and its successor, the OnePlus 2, were sold. The company has come under significant pressure from customers in recent months for failing to fulfill orders in a timely manner, but clearly the company believes this is the best way of processing sales.
The OnePlus X will cost $100 less than the company's flagship model, and the $249 price tag will make it a very attractive proposition for those looking to buy a phone outright. The company is pushing the design of the new smartphone, calling it a "work of art" in the press release accompanying the launch.
The phone is ultraslim at 6.9 mm, which is slightly thinner than the 7.1 mm iPhone 6S, and at just 138 grams, it is also slightly lighter than Apple's latest smartphone, which weighs 143 grams. The phone is available in two finishes: the Onyx version, featuring a black glass finish combined with a metallic frame, and the more exclusive version with a ceramic finish; the latter takes 25 days to create and there will be only 10,000 of them available at a premium -- and it won't go on sale in the U.S.
“Today’s smartphone user strives to find the perfect balance of style and performance. The OnePlus X is a design-centric device -- chic and powerful enough to fit any lifestyle,” said OnePlus CEO Pete Lau.
Despite being thinner and lighter, the OnePlus X has a larger 5-inch screen. Its Full HD resolution of 441 pixels per inch is significantly higher than the iPhone 6S's 326 ppi, though pixel resolution is of course not the only deciding factor in screen quality.
Unlike the two previous OnePlus smartphones, the screen on the OnePlus X uses AMOLED technology, which will allow the phone to display monochrome notifications, a feature similar to that seen on Moto X smartphones over the past couple of years. The OnePlus X comes with a 13-megapixel camera on the rear, while the front-facing camera features a high-resolution 8-megapixel sensor.
The OnePlus X will feature a somewhat dated Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 chipset paired with 3GB of RAM. The phone comes with just 16GB of storage built-in, though this can be augmented by up to 128GB with a microSD card. The microSD card slot doubles as a second SIM card slot for utilizing a dual-SIM setup.
The Onyx version of the OnePlus X smartphone will go on sale Nov. 5 in Europe for those who have an invitation, with the ceramic version going on sale in Europe and India -- with a ceramic-specific invite -- on Nov. 24. A U.S. release date has yet to be announced.