May 14 AT 2:52 PM Dustin Earley 13 Comments

The OnePlus One is being sold at cost


With a 5.5-inch 1080p display, Snapdragon 801, 64GB of storage and a 13-megapixel camera, you have to wonder just how much money OnePlus could possibly be making on the insanely cheap OnePlus One. Well, according to OnePlus CEO Peter Lau, they’re not making anything.

In an interview with TechRadar, Lau was quoted as saying that OnePlus is “selling the phone at cost.” The CEO went on to say, “We are able to do that by redistributing our costs to better benefit the user.” If OnePlus truly isn’t making any money on the One, it makes us wonder just how long the company can keep business moving forward.

With its Nexus series of devices, Google comes as close to selling at cost as comfortable, but it does so with the knowledge that they will make money through Google Play. Exactly how OnePlus plans to make money when it doesn’t offer any paid content or services remains a mystery. Many software startups have taken the approach of getting their business started and worrying about revenue later, but hardware ventures are a different story.

If you appreciate what OnePlus is trying to do to the industry – bringing affordable, high-end hardware with compelling software to as many people as possible – you’d better support them while you can. How do you think OnePlus could make enough money to keep making phones? Let us know in the comments.

Via: Android Central

Source: TechRadar

Dustin Earley: Tech enthusiast; avid gamer; all around jolly guy.

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  • SGB101

    If seeking at cost, that will include R&D, staff and marketing. So as long as they sell the projected amount they can go on indefinitely.

    This is what a new manufacturer should do. Take lenovo, they should sell lot and lots of cheap but great devices, under promise and over deliver, it’s a much cheaper way to market the device, pas savings on to the consumer and build up good will. Then in 18months or so once you have Trust, sell better more expensive (greater margin devices).

    Oppo is trying a harder strategy of over promising and may not deliver, and there plan must be to squeeze the low end (like samsumg) once they have a good name

    Same princess just coming from a different angle. Motos way is cheaper and safer.

    But selling at cost, to build a decent rep is a good way to do it, as long as you have deep pockets to start with.

    • ihatefanboys

      Problem with selling cheap and then trying to raise the price later is the cheapos of the world will still want it cheap and not buy it if the price goes up. Ill just stick with HTC and T-Mobile. I already got the best Android phone this year and cheaply. Ill just trade it in next year for the M9 or whatever its called. Having just paid $240 and trade up for almost nothing. Owning a phone is such an old concept.

      • SGB101

        You keep the cheaper over model, and make a premium high end online with Samsung apple price , once you have a respected name.

        I couldn’t produce a phone today and expect you to pay me $600 for an untested oem. But I could temp alot of people with a cheap $100 device that feels like a $300, then in 18 get into the high end high margin with a $550 phone that should be $600.

        As I said it’s harder for oppo as they can’t go any more high end. But can at least get good rep from this, if done right.

    • Dirty Budha

      Keep in mind that Cyanogen already has an amazing reputation in the rooted Android community. It’s the tip-top of ROM developers.

  • pjosh

    people are trying to support them. they just make it difficult by requiring an invite.

  • MyMilan

    OnePlus seems to be a good company but they should have come out with something better than the ‘invite’ system. Hopefully after May 28 things will sort themselves out and work out for them. The industry needs companies like OnePlus so that companies like samsung, HTC, and nokia don’t gouge consumers like they have been.

  • steve

    This scares me, I really want one, but they will probably go bankrupt before I can get my hands on one. I am using a phone that works 50% of the time waiting shit

  • hp420

    I’m wondering….should I show my support by buying one and getting the hardware visible to more people, or by not buying one which would save the company money….????

  • cp

    by selling accessories,back covers

  • Wondergecko

    Their cost should include everything from R&D cost, CEO salary to janitors at their building (similar to fund management fee). However, it should mean that they have zero return on investment to their shareholder. This is not real in this world. They should have some idea to make money anyway.

  • Nevsky

    Presumably as they ramp up production costs go down and they can eke out a small profit. Also once they establish a name for themselves, they can increase prices slightly, but still be the price leader.

  • eorltheyoung

    Well, selling at cost has returns that are maybe not quantifiable in hard cash, but vital nonetheless. First and foremost, they get the biggest market penetration possible for a small, new and unknown brand with almost no marketing budget. Don’t undererstimate how difficult it is to get a customer base when you have to battle with the likes of Samsung, Apple, HTC, etc.
    The experience and knowledge they are getting, both about their own product and processes and about the customers, is also unrelated to ROI.
    If they do it right this time, they will cash in with the second phone. It’s more of a long term move.
    Also, as Nevsky writes, they’ll probably make some profit a few weeks from now, with the second batch, when the economies of scale kick in and the components become cheaper.
    It’s a risky move, but one I can really understand.

  • futureoneplus owner

    Do not forget that oneplus is owned by OPPOs investor’s so one can safely assume that it is owned by OPPO itself. OPPO sells Find 7A which is very close in specs to OnePlus One but for $500. Do not think this phone is popular partly due to OPPO’s lack of any reputation. So OPPO decided to create a “new” company and a “new” phone. It cannot be more than 400 as no one will buy a phone from an unknown company with zero track record of quality/repair/warranty service. The phone while has fantastic specs cannot be priced more as not many people will buy it. The reason why HTC One, GS5 or iPhone are so overpriced is mostly because of brand name and because they can. Marketing costs are peanuts and this is exaggerated.