OnePlus seems to be setting itself for a world of hurt when it launches the OnePlus 5 next week. The startup whose battle cry has been to “Never Settle” is making some rather big compromises at the expense of its users. As if it weren’t bad enough that it has almost very subtly “announced” that the OnePlus 3T has reached its end of production life, it has not also somewhat officially revealed that the OnePlus 2, two months shy of its second birthday, will no longer receive software updates, including the much desired Android 7.0 Nougat.
The OnePlus 2 is notable for a couple of reasons. For one, it was just OnePlus’ second smartphone and a test of whether it could repeat the magic of the OnePlus One. But perhaps more significantly, it was its first model to run its OxygenOS Android homebrew, after its scandalous divorce with Cyanogen, Inc. It proved that it could indeed carry on the task of shaping its own destiny, especially in software, but it didn’t come without a cost apparently.
In reply to the question of Nougat coming to the OnePlus 2, a certain customer representative by the name of “Alex” had this to say:
“Your time and effort in reaching out to us. Your concern is of utmost importance and I will be helping you out with your ticket. As much as we would like to give the latest update on the OnePlus 2, we’ve discontinued updates for dated devices. But we will continue to support the limited warranty for current users and provide updates and support the best way we can even for OnePlus 2 users.”
OnePlus has practically categorized the OnePlus 2 as a “dated” device that is now only on life support as far as warranties go. It is a very risky decision for OnePlus to make considering the smartphone has yet to reach the two-year mark. And while OnePlus never explicitly made a promise similar to the Google Nexus and Pixel phones, it’s not hard to see how OnePlus 2 owners will be more than disappointed at the news.
It is pretty much a logistics problem which shows the limits of what a small startup will be able to accomplish, no matter how big the ambition. It doesn’t have the production or stock capacity to keep the OnePlus 3T in production alongside the upcoming OnePlus 5. And it seems it doesn’t have the manpower to keep the OnePlus 2 updated as well. OnePlus may be trying to avoid misfortune by skipping the number 4, but it is definitely tempting fate.