For the first time since I started following OnePlus and their unique way of marketing phones to the public, they are in the news for the wrong reasons. OnePlus are running out of phones; specifically the latest version, OnePlus 3, to sell to the public and are planning on halting sales to some countries from next week.
The complaint from the public was that the notorious invite system was too arbitrary and resulted in too long a waiting list of potential buyers. But the unique style created a sort of mystique around the phones making them a must-have gadget in the minds of people.
The invite system was cancelled with the OnePlus 3 when it was launched just a couple of months ago. But it seems OnePlus did not anticipate there would be a huge demand for the 6GB RAM phone from the public.
I wonder how that is so. Didn’t the experience of the first two phones tell them there is always a huge demand for the phones? The waiting list was so long the company had to cancel the invite system for the first two phones even before it launched the latest flagship.
These are phones that come with unbeatable specs and modest a modest price. For instance, apart from a huge RAM of 6GB, the OnePlus 3 is a 5.5 inch, 64 GB internal storage, Snapdragon 820 phone with a display resolution of 1080×1920 pixel and Corning Gorilla Glass 4 for added protection.
These are high end specs that come at just $400.
So it beats me that OnePlus did not anticipate the demand would be high for the phone.
This is how the news of the suspension was announced in blog post:
You might have noticed that when you place an order for the OnePlus 3, the estimated shipping date kept getting longer as time went by. The reason for this is simple. We were confident in the OnePlus 3 when it launched, but sales in mainland Europe have been way better than what we expected. Therefore, we’ve decided to temporarily pause sales in some countries in order to give inventory time to replenish.
Sales for the following regions will be temporarily paused on oneplus.net from August 9th 0:00 (CEST) until September 12th 23:59 (CEST):
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Spain. Sales in Hong Kong will also be paused during this time frame.
We are working hard to secure more stock and fire up more production lines so that we can fulfill our goal of putting premium products into the hands of as many people as possible. With this note I wanted to give customers in affected regions enough advance notice to be able to purchase a OnePlus 3. If you’re planning to purchase but can’t do it before we pause sales, we’ll be offering an in-stock notification service where you can sign up with your email address to be notified when we’re back in stock.”
So the sticking point for OnePlus is that they need one month to replenish stocks before they resume shipping out to those markets.
I see this differently though. First of all, I won’t be surprised if this is a publicity stunt to put OnePlus in the news again. You know how they say bad news is good news. News like this would sort of remind some folks that they need to buy the much talked about phone to see what the hype is all about.
Or to remind those that forgot they needed to buy the phone that they can now book their order for next month.
Secondly, I won’t be surprised if the scarcity was deliberately created to make it look like demand was so high because the phone is super awesome. This is not far-fetched from where I am observing.
The lengths OEMs (struggling to make it in the competitive mobile phone business) would go to market their phones shouldn’t surprise anybody.
Anyway, whatever the reason for this move by OnePlus, they are back in the news again flaunting a ‘problem’ other OEMs would love to have. Frankly speaking, who wouldn’t want to run out of stock due to high demand?
image credit: androidcommunity.com; oneplus.net; forbes.com