Back when OnePlus One was released in 2014, the Shenzhen, China-based company had a vision of bringing excellent phones at the most affordable prices ever known. The strategy worked as they were consistently able to provide buyers with high-end specs at a lower price than other brands. Fast forward to 2020 and OnePlus has gradually shifted from the image of being a flagship killer to being an actual flagship.

The recently launched OnePlus 8 and 8 Pro clearly show how the brand has become an actual flagship, leaving space for others to fill the void of a flagship killer. With a price tag of $700 and $900 respectively, the devices are now in the big boys’ territory, competing with the likes of Samsung Galaxy S20, iPhone 11 and Huawei P40. That is a radical shift from the $300 price tag for affordable power-packed phones that OnePlus offered since its incorporation.

This is due for change – OnePlus CEO Pete Lau, in an interview with Fast Company said that the brand will go back to its roots. He confirmed that they’ll provide affordable smartphones to its hardcore fan base who feel neglected by the pricier phone options. This indicates OnePlus segmenting its product line into two – one for the affordable phone market and the other one for premium buyers.

The upcoming OnePlus Z (or maybe OnePlus 8 Lite) is going to prove that right. The phone is rumored to launch in July this year and it will offer a more affordable price point for buyers. The mid-range phone will have a punch-hole 6.4-inch 90Hz AMOLED display and will be powered by 5G enabled Snapdragon 765G SoC.

OnePlus Z is speculated to have a triple-camera setup and 4,000 mAh battery. The phone is going to retail for an affordable price of around $450-$500 which remains to be seen at the time launch. Other specifications are also expected to roll out in the coming days as the device nears launch date.