After many rumors and plenty of speculation, OnePlus has confirmed that the OnePlus 9T is officially cancelled. In other words, the next OnePlus flagship likely won’t be arriving until next year with the launch of the OnePlus 10.
This news was confirmed by OnePlus CEO Pete Lau during a media briefing attended by our sister site TechRadar. So if you were holding off on picking up a OnePlus 9 or OnePlus 9 Pro, in case something better came up, now’s probably the time to pull the trigger.
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I can’t help but feel like this decision has been coming ever since OnePlus decided to release the OnePlus 7 Pro back in 2019. Previously OnePlus’s bi-annual release schedule meant you’d get some sort of meaningful upgrade with each subsequent phone.
But by offering a high-end ‘Pro’ model earlier, with better features and hardware, it means there wasn’t much left for the T model when it arrived a few months later. That was made immediately obvious by the fact the OnePlus 7T Pro was pretty much identical to the OnePlus 7 Pro.
Then when the OnePlus 8T Pro failed to materialize last year, it meant the OnePlus 8 Pro had a lot more to offer than the baseline OnePlus 8T. Even though the 8T saw the introduction of super-fast 65W charging speeds.
It just felt as though the T series flagships didn’t really have anything worthwhile to offer, and it's more than likely that a OnePlus 9T wouldn't have been all that impressive either. In other words, OnePlus’s fall releases were always doomed if the company carried on the way it was going. It's just happened now, instead of a year or two down the line.
Of course the world is in the midst of a major chip shortage, which has affected everything from PS5 restocks to cars. While it seems the writing may have been on the wall for the OnePlus T series, it may just be that the lack of components prevented the company from developing another flagship device this year.
After all, that exact thing happened to the Samsung Galaxy Note 21. Though again, that was a product line that has been on the rocks for several months now.
But, whatever the reason behind the OnePlus 9T’s cancelation, I’m just hoping that OnePlus will realize it’s better to focus its attention on producing a quality annual flagship, rather than flooding the market with new devices every few months.
OnePlus still has more to come
Lau confirmed that OnePlus still had products to announce later this year, so there’s still more to come from OnePlus. However, with the company’s recent move into the budget and mid-range markets, it’s likely Lau is referring to a new entry in the OnePlus Nord range.
Lau also confirmed more details about OnePlus’s integration with sister company Oppo. Rather than existing as two separate and distinct brands, OnePlus and Oppo will cross over a lot more — especially where software is concerned. In fact, the two are combining their own flavors of Android, OxygenOS and ColorOS, into one unified operating system for both companies.
We’re not sure when Oppo will begin using this new software, but Lau confirmed that the 2022 OnePlus flagship will be the company’s first phone to utilize it, saying that “We will combine the strengths from both into one even more powerful OS: the fast and smooth, burdenless experience of OxygenOS, and the stability and rich features of ColorOS."
The software will also eventually roll out to older OnePlus models, up to and including the OnePlus 8. Again, it’s not clear what the deal will be with existing Oppo handsets.