14 January 2020
OnePlus has finally launched its much-anticipated Concept One phone at the ongoing Consumer Electronics Show 2020. The main highlight of this concept phone is already known, thanks to the teasers that the company put ahead of the big reveal. But it’s the first time we are witnessing this full-fledged device, thanks to the company’s debut at CES.
Once again, OnePlus took some design cues from the McLaren supercar and added to its first concept phone. It has a stitched leather look on the back with papaya-hue. The look of the back appears to be a zip-like arrangement which is unzipped in its halfway, more like an “open-end zipper arrangement.” The only difference is that the teeth of the zip are replaced by a solid black glass.
So, coming to the essence of the phone for which the phone is actually known. The OnePlus Concept One uses the electrochromic glass and the tech behind this glass is it turns glass opaque and transparent when voltage is applied to it. This is a similar tech used in luxury airplanes and hotels. Well, the idea may not charm everyone but OnePlus has, at least, made it work on its smartphone. So, here, in terms of the phone, it hides the cameras completely. It takes just 0.7 seconds to switch from opaque to transparent, which it says is fastest already. Also, it takes a very small amount of power to work.
This may not have any practical importance but the biggest application of this tech is that it eliminates the bump completely. Thus, the camera arrangement aligns with the back and nothing comes out. This particular strip in which the cameras are embedded runs slightly to the top as well, making an overall curved look.
The second functional result of the glass which is a bit technical is the ability to use it as a variable neutral density (ND) filter. According to OnePlus, the phone is able to achieve up to ND8 with the glass, meaning it can cut eight stops of light from entering the lens. This allows for things like longer exposures, a wider aperture in highly lit situations and other benefits.
All the hype on the back of the OnePlus Concept One is somewhat overshadowing what is provided on the front, though there isn't anything new. The device has a curved display and there is no notch and even the punch-hole, as it features the pop-up selfie camera.
So by all other accounts and measures, the OnePlus Concept One phone can be considered as a new variant of the OnePlus 7T Pro 5G McLaren Edition. It comes with the same exact internals but has been made specifically to show off the new camera-hiding technology.
Note that this is a concept phone and may not launch but OnePlus says it has actively been looking into how to make the tech better for future devices.
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