The time for open secrets is over — OnePlus has just announced its new OnePlus 9 and 9 Pro smartphones during a streamed launch event this morning. As expected, OnePlus is partnering with legendary camera maker Hasselblad. The partnership will eventually see the two companies jointly developing new kinds of camera hardware. For now, though, the OnePlus 9 series should benefit from advanced color calibration, resulting in more accurate, natural-looking tones in photos taken with both devices.
The OnePlus 9 Pro uses a 48-megapixel sensor co-developed with Sony as its main shooter, and it's flanked by a 50-megapixel ultra-wide camera and an 8-megapixel telephoto with a 3.3x optical zoom range. The highlight here is the ultra-wide camera. OnePlus claims it's one of the largest sensors in a smartphone. What's more, the company has found a way to significantly reduce edge distortion. That's something you'll see when shooting architecture. Photos from the OnePlus 9 Pro's ultra-wide camera won't have warped lines.
And since Hasselblad deals almost exclusively in pro-grade, medium-format cameras, it's perhaps natural that special attention was paid to the OnePlus 9 series' Pro modes. In addition to typical features like direct control over ISO, focus, exposure time, and more, the Hasselblad Pro mode also lets users shoot photos as 12-bit RAW files and work with an editing interface inspired by Hasselblad's own cameras. Oh, and the OnePlus 9 and 9 Pro will emulate the sound of a Hasselbad's classic leaf shutter. Of course, stills are only half the story. On the video front, the OnePlus 9 Pro can capture 4K video at 120 frames per second and 30 FPS.
Last year's OnePlus 8 Pro had a screen that refreshed 90 times per second, but the new 9 Pro instead packs a LTPO panel with a 120Hz refresh rate. More importantly, the screen doesn't stay locked at 120Hz — that refresh rate peaks when the screen is bring used to play games or whip through long webpages, but it dips as low as 1Hz when you're reviewing your photos or reading static pages of text. Devices like the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra also pack screens with variable refresh rates, but they can only get as low as about 10Hz. The advantage of the screen working in this way is that the phone can conserve battery life when displaying static content. A new HyperTouch feature will work with select games, including Call of Duty: Mobile, to reduce input delay.
Like the rest of early 2021's flagship smartphones, the 9 Pro packs one of Qualcomm's Snapdragon 888 chipsets, paired here with 8GB or 12GB of LPDDR5 RAM and either 128GB or 256GB of storage. That horsepower should ensure the sort of snappy performance we're used to from OnePlus phones, as does one of the Pro's standout features: its 6.7-inch Quad HD AMOLED display. Powering everything is a 4,500mAh battery. OnePlus says you'll easily get a day of up time from the phone. OnePlus's super-fast Warp Charge 65T is there to charge the phone to full in around 30 minutes. Meanwhile, with the company's proprietary wireless charging pad, you can get the battery back to full in about 45 minutes.
The standard OnePlus 9 takes most of what makes the Pro model interesting and packs it into a smaller, less expensive body. It still uses the Snapdragon 888 and comes in the same RAM and storage configurations, but instead offers a 6.5-inch, 120Hz display that tops out at Full HD. The camera configuration is slightly different too: While it uses the same 50-megapixel ultra-wide camera as its more premium sibling, Its main camera uses an older 48-megapixel sensor to save on costs. That said, it can still capture video at 8K and 30 frames per second.
The OnePlus 9 Pro will be available in three colors: Morning Mist, Pine Green and Stellar Black. Meanwhile, you'll be able to get the OnePlus 9 in Winter Mist, Astral Black and Arctic Sky. Pre-orders for both the OnePlus 9 and 9 Pro will open on March 26th, with official sales starting on April 2nd. The OnePlus 9 Pro will start at $970, while the OnePlus 9 will start at $729.