Rumors, leaks, and everything we want to see in the upcoming flagship

It’s no secret that OnePlus is prepping its next flagship phone, presumably the OnePlus 11. This will be a big release for the Chinese phone maker as it looks to be getting back to basics. Technically, the company wasn’t going anywhere, but it hasn’t had the same run in the US as it has in markets like Europe and India. With the OnePlus 10 Pro and the OnePlus 10THowever, the company has made it clear that it’s not settled yet, so our eyes are now on the next major release.

Rumors about the OnePlus 11 are starting to heat up and we already know a lot about what’s shaping up to be one of the brand’s better phones. So before we get to our wish list, here’s everything we already know about OnePlus’ upcoming smartphone.

Rumors from well-known tipsters suggest that OnePlus could drop the “Pro” moniker this year. This means OnePlus’ upcoming flagship might just be called the OnePlus 11. We didn’t launch a vanilla OnePlus 10 alongside the OnePlus 10 Pro this year, so we’d suggest taking this with a grain of salt. But we’ll go along with whatever the rumor mills throw out and call it the OnePlus 11 for the sake of this article.

OnePlus 11: Prices and release date

OnePlus has traditionally been one of the first manufacturers to release a new phone every year. Most OnePlus flagships arrived in the US in March or April, so we’re likely to see the same for the OnePlus 11. We’re expecting the Chinese launch of the OnePlus 11 in January 2023, followed by the global debut in early spring.

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While rumors say we won’t be getting a “Pro” model in 2023, we expect the OnePlus 11 to be priced similarly to the OnePlus 10 Pro. It makes sense for the company to stick with the sub-$900 price segment and compete for the same piece of the pie as its current flagship. We may see a Pro model later this year that can compete with more powerful devices with a price tag over $1,000. Until we hear otherwise, we think the OnePlus 11 will arrive in the US sometime in March or April and carry the same launch price tag as the 10 Pro, if not lower.

OnePlus 11: leaked design and specs

OnePlus has recently started tinkering with its smartphone designs to deliver unique-looking devices that are a departure from what we’ve seen before. It changed things up a bit for the OnePlus 9 series and did it again for the OnePlus 10 Pro. The result, for better or for worse, is a OnePlus 10 Pro that is now instantly recognisable. And if the leaked render is anything to go by, it looks like OnePlus is once again trying something new to make the OnePlus 11 stand out in the sea of ​​other phones. Look:

This one leaked viewshared by well-known leaker OnLeaks shows OnePlus’ upcoming flagship with an updated camera module. The phone now has a round camera island with three sensors, an LED flash and Hasselblad branding. It looks like the company is sticking with the black and green colors for its next flagship, and it’s also bringing back the warning slider that was missing from the OnePlus 10T. Unlike other smartphones with a round camera island, such as the Huawei Mate 50 Pro, the OnePlus 11’s camera island seems to spill over to the left edge.

A close-up of the OnePlus 11's circular camera island.

The camera bump itself seems to blend into the side rails of the phone, as it does on the OnePlus 10 Pro and the OnePlus 10T. It looks good and we’re glad OnePlus is keeping it. We have mixed feelings about how the phone looks in these renders, but it’s too early to make a final decision. We reserve our judgments for when we get our hands on the phone.

For now, we can also look into the leaked spec sheet to see what else OnePlus has in store.

OnePlus 11 Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 announcement poster.

If there’s one thing that stands out on the OnePlus 11 spec sheet, it’s the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip. That’s right, the company has confirmed that the OnePlus 11 will feature Qualcomm’s new mobile chipset, which was recently unveiled at the Snapdragon Summit. It’s one of the most powerful mobile chips out there today, and you’ll see it in many Android phones in 2023 and beyond. OnePlus is saving the remaining spec sheet for the official reveal next year, but there are more leaks showing what else the company has up its sleeve.

The OnePlus 11 will feature Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip.

It looks like the OnePlus 11 will have a 6.7-inch 120Hz QHD+ AMOLED panel, similar to that of the OnePlus 10 Pro. You can also expect the phone to get up to 16GB of RAM and 256GB of UFS 4.0 storage. The rear camera setup is likely to include a 50MP primary camera, a 48MP ultra-wide camera and a 32MP telephoto camera with 2x optical zoom. It looks like OnePlus is also settling for a 5,000mAh battery for the upcoming phone with support for 100W wired fast charging.

OnePlus 11 wishlist: things we’d like to see

We already have a good idea of ​​what to expect from the next OnePlus flagship, but there are still some gaps in the leaks and rumours. We expect to learn more about the phone in the coming months, but it’s now time to discuss the things we’d like to see in the next OnePlus flagship.

Better cameras

OnePlus 10 Pro back panel

OnePlus’ hardware has evolved a lot over the years, but it still has some work to do to catch up with its competitors in the camera department. There was nothing to write home about with both the OnePlus 10 Pro and OnePlus 10T cameras. In fact, they were a bit disappointing, especially given the kind of optics we get on phones in the same price range. It was especially disappointing to see a downgraded ultra-wide sensor on the OnePlus 10 Pro compared to its predecessor. Long story short, OnePlus isn’t quite competing with the best in cameras, and we hope that changes with the OnePlus 11. We’ve already had some rumors to the contrary, but it still says nothing fixed.

Stable and faster software updates

OxygenOS 13 featured

OnePlus recently committed to providing four major Android updates and five years of security updates for some of its devices. That’s a promising start, but it still needs to deliver those updates faster and more consistently. With OxygenOS now just being ColorOS by a different name, we can at least hope OnePlus delivers the updates soon, especially as it competes with Google and Samsung.

Official IP rating for all variants

back of the OnePlus 10 Pro on top of marble

Not all OnePlus 10 Pro variants have a formal IP rating; they are only limited to the T-Mobile units sold in the US. Sure, these handsets are structurally the same as the unlocked ones, meaning the IP rating applies globally, but it would be nice to have a formal IP rating. It’s not a deal breaker per se, but it’s a fundamental feature that all premium flagship phones should have by 2022.

And those are the things we hope to see in OnePlus’ upcoming flagship. The fact that we can only add a limited number of things to this wish list means that the OnePlus phones are almost here. The lack of a solid camera setup and reliable updates are the only things that keep us from freely recommending the OnePlus 10 Pro to those looking for a premium flagship.

We’d like to know what you’d like to see from the OnePlus flagship in 2023. What features are you most looking forward to? Let us know by dropping a line in the comments below.

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