The OnePlus Nord from 2020 was OnePlus’ return to the mid-range phone market after its flagship line crossed the border into premium territory; it had a low cost, but enough features to make it worth buying.
Other new phones coming soon
We later found out the phone was the first of a new line from OnePlus, and the Nord N10 5G and Nord N100 followed later in the year. 2021 is almost certain to bring even more handsets in the line including a OnePlus Nord 2, to carry the torch from the range’s founding member.
We could see the OnePlus Nord 2 come out alongside the OnePlus 9 line, which is expected in the first few months of 2021, though it could also come at a later date.
We haven’t heard much about the OnePlus Nord 2 yet, not from the company or from leaks and rumors, so it’s hard to guess what the phone will be like. But we’re starting to hear a few things, all of which you’ll find below, and as soon as we learn anything else about the OnePlus Nord 2 we’ll add it to this article.
We’ve come up with a wish-list for what we want to see from the phone – you’ll find that further down.
A leak suggests that the OnePlus Nord 2 will launch soon but will ditch Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chipsets and instead sport a high-end MediaTek one.
Cut to the chase
- What is it? The next main Nord phone from OnePlus
- When is it out? Possibly mid-2021
- How much will it cost? Around £379 / €399 (around $480, AU$680)
OnePlus Nord 2 release date and price
What do we know about the OnePlus Nord 2’s availability? Not much. The only real rumor so far comes from Android Central, which claims the phone will launch in Q2 (meaning sometime between April and June).
Beyond that all we have to go on is precedent, which is a shaky thing to base judgement on since it’s a new phone line.
The OnePlus Nord launched in August 2020, so an August 2021 launch is certainly possible for the Nord 2, but the company might not opt to wait that long. The phone cost £379 / €399 (around $480, AU$680), so we could possibly see a similar price for the successor.
News and leaks
According to the Android Central report linked above, the OnePlus Nord 2 will be powered by a MediaTek Dimensity 1200 chipset. That’s quite a change as the original Nord – and all other OnePlus phones – use Qualcomm Snapdragon chipsets.
However, while the OnePlus Nord uses a mid-range Snapdragon 765G, the Dimensity 1200 is high-end, so the new phone might end up having quite a performance boost. That doesn’t necessarily mean it will cost more either, as we’d imagine MediaTek’s chipsets are cheaper than Qualcomm’s.
What we want to see
Here’s what we want to see in the OnePlus Nord 2, both in terms of new features and tweaks to the original.
1. Wider availability
The OnePlus Nord was somewhat of a test run for OnePlus’ new phone range, and it was only released in certain regions. Notably, the US was absent.
Subsequent members of the Nord line have seen US releases though, so it’s possible the Nord 2 will as well. We’d hope so, so more people can get their hands on the affordable phone.
2. An IP68 rating
IP ratings for phones tell you how well protected they are from dust and water, so you can know if your handset can survive an accidental submersion or lots of stray particles.
The OnePlus Nord didn’t have such an IP rating – that doesn’t mean they’re not protected against outside some elements, just that the phone isn’t officially certified. That does mean you can’t be too sure how hardy the handset is though, and if you don’t know how well-protected a valuable smartphone is, you might treat it like it’s not protected at all.
We’d like to see the OnePlus Nord get an IP rating, and if possible an IP68 – that means it’s fully protected from dust, and can survive being underwater at depths of 2 meters for up to 30 minutes.
3. Improved battery life
Our biggest issue with the OnePlus Nord was its battery life, as while it generally lasted a day of use, we never found it to exceed that. We felt that power users might not get that whole day of use too.
We’d like to see a longevity boost for the OnePlus Nord 2, whether that’s from a larger battery cell, or more software optimizations to stop the phone draining battery as fast.
4. Smaller front cameras
The OnePlus Nord was one of a few affordable phones in 2020 to come with multiple front-facing cameras, and we found the phone took good selfies as a result.
However, two lenses takes up space, and these dual snappers resulted in a chunk being taken out of the display for them. As a result, there wasn’t much space for notification icons and the like.
If the OnePlus Nord 2 has dual-selfie snappers, we’d like to see them use smaller lenses, or be positioned better to take up less display space. OnePlus has toyed with pop-up cameras before, and if there are two front-facing cameras, that seems a great solution, though there are others.