The OnePlus One was released in 2014 to very positive reviews
thanks to its flagship-level hardware, low price, and polished Cyanogen OS software. Now here we are a year later and the OnePlus 2 is just around the corner. As it did last year, OnePlus is revealing the specs of its new phone one at a time, and it’s starting with the one that might cause the most concern. The OnePlus 2 will run a Snapdragon 810, which has been blamed for a myriad of problems with other 2015 flagship phones. OnePlus says it’s cool, though — literally.
The Snapdragon 810 is the latest high-end ARM chip from Qualcomm
. You’ll currently find it in devices like the LG G Flex 2, HTC One M9
, and Sony Xperia Z4/Z3+
. Prior to the first devices shipping with this chip, there were rumors that it ran very hot
and some OEMs were concerned. This turned out to be more or less accurate. Samsung avoided the Snapdragon altogether by using its own Exynos in all versions of the Galaxy S6 and LG opted for the slower (and cooler) Snapdragon 808 in the LG G4.
is careful to point out it is using the v2.1 release of the Snapdragon 810, which is supposed to run cooler. However, this is what Sony used in the Z4, and Japanese carriers have gone so far as to place warning signs
in retail stores to suggest people turn off the Z4 while charging to avoid overheating.
The problem with this chip is not that it immediately bursts into flames when you turn on the phone, but that it has to throttle due to heat. Snapdragon 810 phones are actually very fast as long as you don’t push them too hard. The Snapdragon 810 is an octa-core chip with four powerful Cortex-A57 CPU cores and four efficient Cortex-A53 CPU cores. The fast cores are usually clocked at 2GHz initially, but they have to back off when heat begins to build up. In fact, the high-power cores may have to switch off when they’ve been stressed for too long in devices like the M9 and G Flex 2. That leaves the low-power A53 cores to keep things going, which are better suited for light background tasks. This causes sluggish performance and battery issues as you use the device more.
OnePlus says its engineers are focusing on controlling heat in the OnePlus 2
with a layer of thermal gel and a graphite cover. This should make sure heat generated by the ARM chip will dissipate evenly and prevent the throttling seen in other devices. The software will also be tuned to take advantage of the CPU cores more efficiently, but this is an in-house solution for the 2. After the Cyanogen Inc. deal fell apart
, OnePlus released the Oxygen OS ROM. That will be the default ROM on the OnePlus 2, so the company will have to take full responsibility for how the software interacts with the Snapdragon.
If nothing else, OnePlus has the advantage of seeing how other OEMs dealt with the Snapdragon 810. Maybe they’ll get it figured out. The OnePlus 2 is expected to arrive some time this summer, but we’ll probably get a new tidbit of information every week or two. It might be hard to match the 19000(according to USA prices) launch price of the One, but the value needs to be good for OnePlus to have a shot.