The foldable segment has seen an uptick in launches over the last year. While Samsung dominates the foldable lineup with its Fold and Flip lineup, its offerings have faced stiff competition from the likes of Huawei, Oppo, and others. OnePlus, known for its flagship destroyers and some great budget phones, is also foraying into the foldable segment this year. The company’s long-rumored OnePlus foldable phone will debut later this year, and if priced right, it could give the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip and Galaxy Z Fold a run for the money.
Since OnePlus is owned by BBK, the company could rely on the expertise of Oppo and Vivo to ensure its first foldable delivers a stellar user experience. This is something that will become clear once the phone launches. Below is a roundup of everything we know about the phone once rumored as the OnePlus Open. In rumors, the foldable was initially referred to as the OnePlus V Fold, but new reports suggest it will be marketed as the OnePlus Open. As we’re unclear on the name, we’ll refer to it as both throughout this article.
OnePlus foldable phone: Design and specs
Initial OnePlus V Fold renders leaked in mid-June, revealing its book-style form factor. The renders were based on early prototypes, and some details were fuzzy. Nonetheless, they revealed the huge circular camera island on the rear with the Hasselblad renders and the wide aspect ratio of the foldable, which looks similar to the Google Pixel Fold.
The first set of leaked OnePlus Open renders
More accurate OnePlus Open renders based on a pre-production unit popped up in early August. There were significant design differences compared to the first set of images, including a wider cover display. This makes the foldable look similar to Oppo’s Find N2, hinting at the possibility of the two BBK companies sharing the same basic design, with OnePlus making some minor tweaks of its own.
The edges of the foldable appear curved in the renders, which should aid with ergonomics.
Left: Old OnePlus One leaked render; Right: New render showing the wider aspect ratio of the foldable
At the rear, the camera island appears even bigger in the new images, with the Hasselblad branding replaced with a simpler ‘H’ logo. There’s also a new LiDAR or ToF (Time-of-Flight) sensor in the camera housing in the new images. It also gives a clear look at the foldable’s faux leather back. OnePlus iconic Alert Slider will be a part of its first foldable, located on the left side of the chassis.
While not confirmed, rumors indicate the OnePlus Open will feature a 6.3-inch 120Hz OLED cover screen. Combined with the wider aspect ratio, it should enhance the usefulness of the outer display. The inner folding screen is purportedly a 7.8-inch flexible OLED with a 2K resolution and 120Hz refresh rate. OnePlus initially planned to use a BOE panel but has since reportedly switched to a Samsung-supplied display.
OnePlus teased the Open by taking a jab at the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 during Samsung’s Galaxy Unpacked event in late July 2023. The company’s jab further confirmed that its foldable will be called the Open.
Premium OnePlus phones are known for packing powerful internals, and the OnePlus Fold should follow the same trend. A leak from late June indicates the phone will have a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip, 16GB of RAM, and 256GB of storage. A 4,800mAh battery will provide juice to the internals and support 67W fast charging. That will be slower than the OnePlus 11‘s 100W fast charging, but the battery should still top up in around 30 to 40 minutes.
Other specs revealed by rumors include a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, Alert Slider, and dual-SIM 5G connectivity.
OnePlus foldable phone: Cameras
If the leaked specs are accurate, the OnePlus Open won’t use the same camera setup as the OnePlus 11. The company might use older 48MP sensors to keep the price of the foldable in check.
Reportedly, the foldable will house a triple camera setup, including a 48MP primary, 48MP ultra-wide, and 64MP telephoto shooter. A 32MP camera on the external display and a 20MP shooter on the inner folding display will do selfie duties. The Hasselblad branding will remain, so expect the OnePlus Open’s photos to have a similar color tuning as the OnePlus 11.
From what it appears, if you want a foldable with the best camera performance, you might have to look elsewhere, as the OnePlus V Fold could fall short in this department.
OnePlus foldable phone: Software
Besides the hardware, a foldable phone must have optimized software that takes advantage of its unique form factor. This is where Samsung is ahead of its rivals, with One UI packing several foldable-specific enhancements. While OnePlus’ OxygenOS was once the community favorite’s Android skin, its quality and stability declined after the company merged its codebase with Oppo’s ColorOS.
More than a year after the two companies started sharing a unified codebase, things have improved. However, OxygenOS has lost the community’s trust, with OnePlus now being slow in rolling out updates for its devices. For the OnePlus V Fold to be successful, OnePlus must add new foldable-specific features to OxygenOS to take better advantage of the inner folding screen. There should also be tweaks to the taskbar to aid in multitasking.
These enhancements will also benefit the OnePlus Pad, so the company certainly has the incentive to do so. Whether the company puts effort into this is something that time will tell.
OnePlus foldable phone: Price and release date
OnePlus confirmed that its first folding phone will arrive this year at MWC 2023. So, it is only a matter of time before the product goes official. The exact name hasn’t been confirmed, and while initial rumors suggested the phone could be sold as the OnePlus V Fold, that’s seemingly not going to be the case. The recent teaser from the company all but confirms OnePlus Open as the marketing name.
Initial leaks suggested the OnePlus Open could launch at an event in New York City on August 29, 2023. The company typically holds an event in NY for its major device launches, so the rumor had some credibility. But a more recent report suggests the phone’s launch has been delayed. This is due to OnePlus switching from a BOE foldable screen to a Samsung panel. If true, this would be a good change, as Samsung has more experience in making folding display panels.
Irrespective of when the OnePlus Open launches, expect the company to hold a big launch event. This will allow it to gather plenty of eyes on its first foldable. Like the OnePlus 11, the Open should see a global debut at launch in all major smartphone markets worldwide.
As for pricing, rumors have been light in this regard. OnePlus is known for undercutting the competition by providing excellent value for the money with its products. The company could do something similar with the OnePlus Open by fixing its price at around $1,500. This will make the device a few hundred dollars cheaper than the Google Pixel Fold and the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5, allowing it to lure customers interested in foldables with its attractive pricing.
OnePlus will face stiff competition from Samsung
The foldable market is not the same as before. The competition has increased significantly, but OnePlus can still make a name for itself in the market. With the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 packing iterative upgrades over the Z Fold 4, OnePlus can disrupt the foldable market with the Open. That is if the phone’s hardware lives up to the hype and OnePlus does not butcher the execution.
The Google Pixel Fold is also impressive, considering it’s the company’s first foldable. While the OnePlus Open may eclipse it from a hardware viewpoint, it is hard to beat the Pixel Fold’s software experience, which should further improve once Android 14 lands.