Rumored specs for the OnePlus 9E have been leaked, and it looks as though it’s the phone we thought the OnePlus 9 Lite might be.
According to a report from Greek outlet TechManiacs, the OnePlus 9E will launch as one of three new OnePlus devices – alongside the OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro – set to be released some time between March and April 2021.
While we’ve already reported on several leaks regarding the OnePlus 9 and 9 Pro models, we had expected the rumored third phone in the upcoming OnePlus lineup to be dubbed the OnePlus Lite, and offer an affordable alternative to its more premium counterparts – but until now, details regarding the device were few and far between.
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If this recent specs leak is to be believed, it looks as though the OnePlus 9E will take up the mantle as the more affordable entry point into the new OnePlus lineup.
An affordable sibling
Firstly, the report suggests the OnePlus 9E will be powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 690 processor alongside 8GB of RAM and 128GB storage. For comparison, we anticipate the OnePlus 9 will come equipped with a Snapdragon 888 processor, with the same 8GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage on board.
The OnePlus 9E is also expected to feature a 6.5-inch Full HD+ display with a 90Hz refresh rate. That's a slightly lower spec than the rumored 120Hz variable refresh rate we expect to see from the premium models in the lineup (and a smaller display than the 6.78-inch size expected from the Pro version), but still a bright and capable screen nonetheless.
As for its camera, the report suggests the OnePlus 9E will come with a 64MP main sensor and 8MP ultra-wide camera, though it’s unclear whether these will form a dual-camera setup. For what is reportedly an affordable smartphone, that’s not bad at all.
We have an idea of the camera specs on its bigger brothers, too, with the OnePlus 9 apparently boasting a 48MP main camera (outputting 12MP images) alongside a 48MP ultra-wide unit and an unknown third camera. The OnePlus 9 Pro, meanwhile, is thought to have four rear snappers.
Interestingly, the OnePlus 9E looks set to come with a 5,000mAh battery, which is slightly bigger than the expected batteries on the OnePlus 9 and Pro. Whether this means the OnePlus 9E maintains better battery life at the expense of greater weight remains to be seen, though we’d expect that to be the trade-off.
When it comes to price, there’s very little concrete information, though we can make some assumptions based on both the expected cost of the OnePlus 9 and previous OnePlus 8 device.
We expect the new flagship OnePlus model to cost at least $699 / £599 (around AU$1,100), given that the OnePlus 8 started at that price and rose to $799 / £699 (around $1,372) for more RAM and storage. For the 9E, then, we’d anticipate a price in the region of $599 / £499 (around AU$900) but it's unclear exactly how much it will cost.
It’s worth clarifying that while most new reports now refer to the device as the OnePlus 9E, that name remains an unofficial assumption, suggesting the affordable version of the OnePlus 9 might be called the OnePlus 9 Lite, after all. In any case, it seems all-but-assured that the OnePlus 9E will be a cheaper but nonetheless capable smartphone for 2021.
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Axel is a London-based Senior Staff Writer at TechRadar, reporting on everything from the latest Apple developments to newest movies as part of the site's daily news output. Having previously written for publications including Esquire and FourFourTwo, Axel is well-versed in the applications of technology beyond the desktop, and his coverage extends from general reporting and analysis to in-depth interviews and opinion.
Axel studied for a degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick before joining TechRadar in 2020, where he then earned an NCTJ qualification as part of the company’s inaugural digital training scheme.