The OnePlus Nord is what happens when the company applies the “Never Settle” mantra to a mid-range product. It transplanted the main 48MP camera from the flagship OnePlus 8, also the 90Hz Fluid AMOLED and Warp Charge 30T technologies all the while trying to address the ever-rising costs of flagships.
The phone is powered by the Snapdragon 765G chipset, perhaps the only clear indication that this isn’t a flagship product. That said, the 7nm chip is efficient and has enough performance in its ISP and AI cores to run the Nightscape algorithms. In short, it gets the job done.
OnePlus realizes that you may currently live outside 5G coverage, but it promises to support the Nord for a while – it will release OS updates for two years and security patches for a year longer. This means there’s a chance that 5G networks will reach you before the Nord reaches the end of its life.
When you take the phone out of its box, you will be looking at Android 10 through Gorilla Glass 5-covered Fluid AMOLED display – a 6.44” panel (1,080 x 2,400 px, 20:9) with 90Hz refresh rate.
There are sRGB and P3 display modes, but no HDR support. Security is handled by the in-display fingerprint reader, face unlock is also an option.
In the top left corner is OnePlus’ first dual selfie. It combines a 32MP sensor (IMX616) with 0.8 µm pixels. For comparison, the 8-series phones have 16MP sensors with 1.0µm pixels. This one has enough resolution for binning, however, so it should have an edge.
Even better, it’s joined by an 8 MP ultrawide angle camera with a 105° lens. The company boasts that this will let you snap selfies with a group of friends without resorting to a selfie stick.
Around the back is a 48MP sensor with all the trimmings – f/1.75 aperture, OIS and EIS. This is essentially the same module as found on the OnePlus 8 (IMX586 sensor, 0.8 µm pixels). There’s no dedicated zoom camera, but the sensor lets you zoom 2x using cropping.
The one major difference from the OnePlus 8 is that 4K video recording is capped at 30 fps (strangely enough, the front camera is capable of 4K/60 fps recording). A cine mode is available for 21:9 videos in 4K. Also, the slow motion mode can do 240 fps at 1080p resolution.
Moving on to the ultrawide angle camera, it has an 119° lens and an 8MP sensor (compared to 16MP on the OP8). This one can’t focus at close distances so instead a 2 MP macro camera is used. The final module is a 5 MP depth sensor.
Inside the phone is a 4,115 mAh battery and inside the box is a Warp Charge 30T charger. It can push a flat battery to 70% in half an hour through the USB-C port (note: USB 2.0). There’s no 3.5 mm jack, you can use the USB-C port for wired headphones if you wish. OnePlus also announced a TWS headset today, but we’ll get to that in a moment.
The phone isn’t officially water resistant or rugged, but the company mentions that a team of 300 engineers subjected it to rigorous tests that included drops and artificial sweat.
There are two finishes available for the glass back – polished Blue Marble and matte Gray Onyx. You can also choose one of six cases - some are artsy, some are simple and one makes it look like the phone has a transparent back (you can thank JerryRigEverything for this one).
The OnePlus Nord will launch in two regions first – Asia and Europe (notably the North American market is excluded). Below are the countries that are getting it.
The phone will cost €400 in mainland Europe and £380 in the UK and it will be notably cheaper in India - INR 28,000 (that's €330 or so). In both cases you will be able to snag one starting on August 4 through the official OnePlus site as well as partner stores and carriers. In India, Amazon will also carry the Nord.
These prices are for the base version with 8 GB of RAM and 128 GB storage. There's an upgrade available with 12 GB RAM and 256 GB storage - this one costs €500/£470 on the Old Continent and INR 30,000 in India.
Note that Amazon India lists an exclusive cheaper version - INR 25,000 - with 6 GB of RAM and 64 GB storage. This one won't be available until September, however.
Note: in France there will be wired headphones included in the box.
But if you want to listen to music the 21st century way, the OnePlus Buds may be for you. These will cost $80 when they launch next week (July 27), in White initially. If you prefer Gray, you will have to wait until early August. Unlike the phone, the Buds will also be available in the US and Canada. However, the "Nord Blue" color combo will be exclusive to Europe and India.
The Buds boast impressive Warp Charging speeds – 10 minutes are enough to get 10 hours worth of listening. That is 10 hours combining the charge inside the buds and their case. The buds themselves get 100 minutes worth of listening in 10 minutes of charging. When fully filled, the buds and the 430 mAh battery in the case offers 30 hours of listening (for comparison, AirPods last 24 hours).
There’s a 13.4 mm dynamic driver hiding inside each bud with Bass Boost and Dolby Atmos options to spice up the audio. The buds are IPX4 water resistant so they aren’t afraid of splashing water or sweat. They support Fast Pair and offer customizable double tap and long press gestures.
PS. where did “Nord” come from? In many European languages in means “north”, the OnePlus team was imagining a north-bound journey into nature while designing their new mid-ranger.