OnePlus Nord 2 is launching soon
Rumors of the OnePlus Nord 2 first took off in November 2020. A new name for the OnePlus device with the codename Deniz is rumored in the News and the company was working on a Nord sequel.
An official mention of the Nord 2 finally came in May, though via a casual listing on OnePlus’ website as a phone worthy of the Stadia Premiere Edition deal. This listing, published on May 25, also suggests that the launch date is not too far away. The original Nord made its debut in late July.
Specs and features
OnePlus has completely relied on Qualcomm silicon for its devices, but the OnePlus Nord 2 could be a turning point. Early rumors hoped for a OnePlus device offering a MediaTek chipset, named the Density 1200. New specs leak coming from trusted rumors that add a little more weight to this claim. This suggests that the Dimensity 1200 will be on the OnePlus Nord 2, making it the first OnePlus phone to feature MediaTek silicon.
Other specs also pointed to the leak. The phone may come with a 6.43-inch FHD+ AMOLED screen, in-display fingerprint reader, and 90Hz refresh rate. It will be an iterative bump on the original Nord, more than a complete overhaul. Power may be provided by a 4,500mAh battery, which will be higher than the 4,115mAh cell in Nord.
For imaging, the tip reveals that a 50MP primary camera will be joined by an 8MP ultra-wide and a 2MP tertiary sensor. There is no dual selfie camera this time around, with a 32MP shooter reportedly positioned at the front. This seems like a good move as the selfie-shooting performance of the first Nord left a lot to be desired. The phone could be offered in two RAM/storage configs, namely 8GB/128GB and 12GB/256GB.
OnePlus Nord 2: Design
Although we have heard a lot of rumors about its chipset, we are yet to see a render of the OnePlus Nord 2 from a reliable source. In March, renders of another Nord phone called Ebba arrived. But while some believed it to be the Nord 2, it is more likely to be the successor to the cheaper Nord phone.
It is unclear whether the Nord 2 will adopt the design features of the OnePlus 9 series, remain more closely related to the original Nord, or become more Oppo-like in its aesthetics. OnePlus’ design philosophy with Nord focused on extra cuts, so it packed a less durable shell and frame than other OnePlus models. And although Nord had dust and water resistance. It lacked an official IP rating. We expect Nord 2 to improve on these two aspects.
Price and availability
OnePlus Nord debuts at $475 as a direct challenge to mid-rangers from Google, Apple, and Samsung. However, we don’t expect OnePlus to hike the Nord 2 price very much. With the OnePlus 9 starting at $855 in Europe and $729 in the US, the company has some wiggle room.
If the Dimension 1200 rumor is indeed true, then OnePlus could be targeting the more premium mid-range market. The MediaTek silicon is generally a bit more affordable than its Qualcomm counterparts, so the Nord 2 could be a cheaper flagship killer. Once again, we’ll have to wait and revisit this section about the phone once again.
As for availability, Nord went on sale a few weeks after the launch date. It later started in India as well. If it’s any indication, expect Nord 2 availability to be less in global regions as well. It’s too early to say whether OnePlus will bring the Nord 2 to the US as opposed to the original Nord. OnePlus decided to launch Nord in markets it knew would have the greatest chance of succeeding.
What we want to see in OnePlus Nord 2
One of the biggest complaints against the OnePlus Nord was that it was a matter of quantity over quality. There are a total of six cameras on the phone, including dual selfie shooters (normal and wide) and a quad rear setup.
We lamented the fact that two of the four rear cameras were 2MP lenses mainly to increase the numbers. However, even the main and ultra-wide sensors did not produce good results. Our reviewers felt that the dual selfie shooters were disappointing as well.
We’d love to see the OnePlus Nord 2 focus on better image quality in general. We’d also like to see the firm shed those crappy 2MP sensors in favor of improving the hardware elsewhere (like a better main or wide sensor, a better selfie camera).
Three years of Android version updates
OnePlus confirmed that Nord will get two years of Android version updates and three years of security updates. This is in line with many major OEMs, but Samsung has recently raised the bar. The South Korean company announced three years of Android version updates for various devices, giving Android fans more incentive to buy Samsung mobile.
OnePlus has offered a similar commitment to its flagships, but it needs to step up and offer a three-year pledge for the OnePlus Nord 2 (and the original Nord). Hopefully, the controversy over the Nord N10 and N100 receiving only one Android version update forces OnePlus to pull its socks up.
More consistent pricing
It is not uncommon to see variations in smartphone prices in different markets, with makers taking into account several regional factors. However, there was a huge difference between Nord’s RRP in India and its prices in countries like Europe. It didn’t help that the brand only offered the 64GB model in India. Hopefully, this difference in pricing has been reduced with the OnePlus Nord 2.
It would be great if the pricing in general is closer to the Indian price point than the European one. For example, the original 128GB Nord was launched in Europe for $456.
The OnePlus Nord was somewhat a testament to the new range of phones from OnePlus and was only released in certain regions. Notably, America was not in it.
Although later members of Nord Line have seen a US release, Nord 2 may do the same. We hope so that more and more people can get their hands on affordable phones.
Improved battery life
Our biggest problem with the OnePlus Nord was its battery life, as it typically lasted a day, but we didn’t get much beyond that. We realized that power users may not even get a full day’s usage.
We’d like to see a longer lifespan boost for the OnePlus Nord 2, whether it’s from a bigger battery cell, or more software optimizations to prevent the phone’s battery from draining faster.
Smaller front cameras
The OnePlus Nord was one of the few affordable mobiles to arrive in 2020 with multiple front-facing cameras, and we found that the phone took decent selfies as well.
However, the two lenses take up space, and these dual snappers result in a portion being taken out of the display for them. As a result, there was not much room for notification icons and the like.
OnePlus has traditionally avoided offering microSD card support on its phones, which means you can rely only on internal storage or the cloud. This isn’t necessarily a big problem if you have a ton of internal storage, to begin with.
However, the OnePlus Nord was launched in India with a 64GB option, and the lack of storage expansion will be more keenly felt at this point. If OnePlus insists on a 64GB option for the Nord 2, we’d like to see microSD support in it as well.
OnePlus Nord 2 Pros & Cons
- Has an AMOLED display
- Comes with a great camera system
- Density 1200 offers good performance and 5G support
- Has a big 4500mAh battery and Warp charging
- Has an in-display fingerprint scanner
- Doesn’t have a high refresh rate
- Memory cards not supported
- 5mm headphone jack is absent
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