OnePlus is reportedly thinking about spinning off Nord as an independent brand. The Nord brand debuted in 2020 with the launch of the OnePlus Nord smartphone. It was the first mid-range smartphone from the company since the OnePlus X was launched in 2015. In the two years since its debut, the Nord brand has grown to include a slew of mid-range and entry-level smartphones, as well as the OnePlus Nord TWS earbuds. In addition, the company is currently rumored to launch the first Nord-branded smartwatch and a new pair of Nord earbuds soon.
OnePlus itself is one of the many smartphone brands from Chinese firm BBK Electronics that acts as an umbrella company for the likes of OnePlus, Oppo, Vivo, iQOO and Realme. While OnePlus is now considered one of the world’s preeminent Android smartphone brands, the company started small in 2014, launching the iconic OnePlus One, which some OnePlus fans still believe is the best OnePlus phone ever created.
According to a new report from The Mobile Indian, ‘Nord’ might soon become an independent brand separate from OnePlus, much the same way POCO operates independently from Xiaomi or iQOO operates separately from Vivo. The report further claims that once Nord is spun off into a separate brand, it could get a separate team, branding and even its own stores. However, despite the separation, Nord would still retain some OnePlus branding, as it might still be presented as ‘a OnePlus brand’ or ‘from OnePlus’ in some instances.
What’s also interesting is what OnePlus is reportedly looking to do with Nord. According to sources quoted by the report, the Nord range would include not only smartphones and accessories but also TVs, fitness bands, smartwatches, Bluetooth neckbands, power banks and more as part of OnePlus’ strategy to turn it into a full-fledged consumer electronics brand. It would also reportedly have a “very strong offline presence,” unlike OnePlus and would be sold through its own dedicated showrooms, as well as third-party retail stores. There’s also talk that the Nord team could be based out of India and even make the country its manufacturing hub.
In terms of the phones themselves, the Nord range will reportedly come with its own interface on top of OnePlus’ Oxygen OS in the same way Xiaomi’s POCO devices come with the POCO launcher on top of MIUI. The brand will also encompass most segments in the smartphone market, with expansions in the upper-end and lower-end of the spectrum. The Nord portfolio will reportedly have a ‘budget flagship’ priced at around $450 and an entry-level model priced below $200. The new brand would also reportedly have light blue as its theme color instead of the trademark red and white color scheme for OnePlus. There’s no confirmation of the report from OnePlus, so it will be interesting to see how this works out going forward.