OnePlus debuts the OnePlus Nord and breaks down phone costs with Marques Brownlee

Oneplus Nord MKBHD Video Split
Oneplus Nord MKBHD Video Split (Image credit: YouTube)

What you need to know

  • OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei showed off the OnePlus Nord to Marques Brownlee during a discussion of smartphone costs.
  • The discussion also dug into what costs what in a smartphone and why some features are so much harder to justify than others.
  • Preorders for the OnePlus Nord start tomorrow in India.

We're now a week away from the OnePlus Nord and its AR launch event, but since pre-orders go live tomorrow, it shouldn't come as a surprise to see OnePlus showing off the phone in all its finished glory in a new in-depth video from Marques Brownlee. The actual purpose of the video is to break down costs of certain features and components in a smartphone and how OnePlus decides which of them make the cut for its phones.

The video is long, but entirely worth the watch, but the more important takeaways when it comes to the OnePlus Nord are that OnePlus chose to once again save money and not opt for IP water resistance, which Pei said tends to cost about $15 a phone for OnePlus. Additionally, while there was a more unique design with a trio of catty-corner rear cameras in the pipeline at some point, the Nord eventually inherited much of the same design from the Realme X50 5G that launched today. That decision seems to have been driven by when OnePlus pivoted from the Nord being more of an experiment to a push for an affordable mainstream device.

Other smartphone cost designs that Pei and Brownlee discussed were the headphone jack — the part is cheap, but it costs a lot to the smartphone's design and real estate — battery, and display tech — 90Hz displays have gotten more popular driving the cost of those screens down. Pei specifically mentioned in the battery section that OnePlus's method of high-amperage charge being converted on the charger brick instead of on the phone drives up the cost more, as well as driving up the cost of the proprietary fast chargers that OnePlus phones need to use.

Another small tease in the video is the earbuds that Pei wore during the interview, which are presumed to be the upcoming OnePlus Buds in a beautiful teal-blue to match the OnePlus Nord. The single bud we see looks very industrial with the straight tubular stalks and the harder angles between the bud and the stalk. It is a very, very pretty color though, I must say.

  • Here's everything we know so far about the OnePlus Nord
Ara Wagoner

Ara Wagoner was a staff writer at Android Central. She themes phones and pokes YouTube Music with a stick. When she's not writing about cases, Chromebooks, or customization, she's wandering around Walt Disney World. If you see her without headphones, RUN. You can follow her on Twitter at @arawagco.