It happened in the end. After spending the better part of a decade hanging on to its reputation for undercutting the competitive price, OnePlus is as expensive as any other. The OnePlus 9 Pro starts at $ 969, and it’s a long time since OnePlus backed that price up with firm software commitments.
When it was launched in 2013 and in the years since, OnePlus was hailed by both fans and the media for having clean software that was updated very quickly. As Android updates evolved, so did OnePlus. The company was quick to participate in early public beta versions and rolled out annual updates on time, far ahead of many competitors.
However, that story has changed dramatically in the last couple of years. Monthly security updates are almost never monthly and almost always late. Major system updates are also very slow to arrive, especially on year old devices, and when they land, bugs and destructive issues are all too common. The OnePlus 8 series was updated quickly, but the OnePlus 7 series just got its stable Android 1
As OnePlus has declined, competition has improved. Google extended Pixels updates to three years and worked with Qualcomm to lay the foundation for longer software life on multiple Android devices. More specifically, Samsung, once known for terrible and bloated software that took time to get updated, has turned its course completely. A user interface seems to feel less inflated each year, and updates come in record time, with security updates consistently arriving each month for far more phones than OnePlus offers. In addition, Samsung just extended update support for basically all Galaxy smartphones to four years, double what OnePlus promises.
It’s time for OnePlus to catch up. OnePlus 9 Pro commands a $ 70 price jump over its predecessor, pushing the device into the same price range as other Android flagships and even the iPhone. After tax, this is a $ 1000 smartphone.
OnePlus customers should ask demanding company to increase its game on software support. A OnePlus 9 Pro may be positioned as a cheaper alternative to the significantly more expensive Galaxy S21 Ultra, but the comparison does not hold. Since its launch, the S21 Ultra has been available through promotions and sales for $ 1000 quite simply – just take a look 9to5Toys. OnePlus 9 Pro does not see discounts for a while if the company’s regular patterns hold. Even when the S21 Ultra is $ 200 more expensive, it will still deliver more software updates, faster updates and will last twice as long as the OnePlus 9 Pro. The math is simple here.
I say all this not to say that the OnePlus 9 Pro is a bad buy. I have been using this phone for over a week and I have been really quite happy with it. It is a solid Android smartphone. Rather, I say this because OnePlus cannot continue to get away with this software practice. Prices continue to rise, but software policy is getting worse. OnePlus may point to its “Open Beta” application as a way to get faster updates, but no one should have to choose beta software just to get an update in time.
Let’s not forget that OnePlus does not really hide its cards here; they obviously do not consider software updates a priority. The proof is clear when you look at the budget OnePlus Nord N10 and N100 phones, devices that have been hits for the company, but which are only promised a single update that is already a year outdated.
OnePlus, increase it.
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