OnePlus Nord 2 vs OnePlus Nord: What’s new and what’s not

OnePlus Nord 2
OnePlus Nord 2 vs OnePlus Nord 一 both in blue (Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)

The OnePlus Nord 2 was officially unveiled as the latest mid-range phone from OnePlus. It is the successor to the last year’s OnePlus Nord 一 which was one of the most popular smartphones of the year as well as one of the best sellers for OnePlus. 

With the launch of the OnePlus Nord 2, it looks like the OnePlus is back on track in its own “Flagship killer” space. This is largely due to the fact that the company has almost added an upgrade to all the major departments including performance, battery, charging, and even the camera. 

While the OnePlus Nord is not available for purchase now in India, the OnePlus Nord 2 will replace the original Nord in the premium mid-range segment. With all the upgrades and a price jump, let's take a look at how the new OnePlus Nord 2 stands against the last-gen OnePlus Nord. Here are all the upgrades the OnePlus Nord 2 brings to the table. 


OnePlus Nord (Blue Marble) and OnePlus Nord 2(Blue Haze). (Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)

The OnePlus Nord 2 isn’t too different from the original Nord in the design department. Both the devices come with Gorilla Glass 5 protection on the front as well as on the back. Both phones offer solid and it feels smooth under your finger. The Type-C charging port, volume rockers, SIM slot, speaker out on the bottom 一 are all placed similarly on both Nord devices. 

However, on the OnePlus Nord 2, the power button is placed slightly on the upper side along with the alert slider. Weirdly enough, the OnePlus has reduced the size of the alert slider and it is also more sensitive than earlier which might result in accidental triggers. Some of you might also face difficulty in reaching the alert slider with one hand. 

In terms of measurement, the OnePlus Nord 2 weighs 189 grams and on the other hand, the OnePlus Nord weighs 184 grams 一 both phones measure 8.2mm. In terms of colour options, the Nord 2 is available in Gray Sierra, Blue Haze and Green-Wood while the Nord was made available in Blue Marble and Gray Onyx. 


Both phone features 90Hz Super AMOLED display. (Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)

One area where OnePlus did not make an improvement is in the display segment. Both the Nord 2 and Nord come with a 90Hz refresh rate Super AMOLED panel. In terms of screen sizes, they differ merely. The Nord 2 sports a 6.43-inch panel and Nord flaunts a 6.44-inch screen. Both phones come with a Full HD+ resolution and 20:9 aspect ratio. Both phones can play HDR videos and they also feature Widevine L1 certification to handle HD streaming via OTT apps. 

While we’d have liked to see a 120Hz refresh rate or a better peak brightness, OnePlus hasn’t done anything eye-catching in the visual department. While the display isn’t bad, this isn’t the best display in the segment for sure.  


The OnePlus Nord 2 is first OnePlus device to feature MediaTek chipset.  (Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)

This is where the OnePlus gets one of its biggest jumps 一 the OnePlus Nord 2 comes with a flagship chipset from MediaTek. The Dimensity 1200 AI sits at the heart of the Nord 2. This is a OnePlus-exclusive chipset for now and OnePlus says that it has optimized the display and battery with the AI. 

The OnePlus Nord from 2020 was powered by Snapdragon 765G SoC 5G chipset 一 while we did not have any issues with the performance of the Nord, the Nord 2 takes the things to next level with the new flagship chipset and also faster UFS 3.1 storage as compared to the last-gen mid-ranger. Lastly, the OnePlus Nord 2 also brings a bunch of AI enhancements, more 5G band support, and system-wide optimization. 


The OnePlus Nord series will get 2 years of software updates and 3 years of security updates. (Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)

The OnePlus Nord 2 is the first device from OnePlus to run on Oxygen OS 11.3 based on the new software base which consists of code from Oppo’s ColorOS and Oxygen OS. While the majority of the UI, fonts, animations, and first-party apps remain the same as previous versions. The camera app is now similar to Realme's camera app. The settings app has been revamped too. 

But, overall the Oxygen OS elements now feel more like ColorOS/Realme UI. However, one good thing about the Oxygen OS is that there are no bloatware or random spammy push notifications across the UI. In fact, the Nord 2 comes with fewer pre-installed apps compared to the Nord. Here are some of the differences that you’ll notice on the OnePlus Nord 2. 

Order of pictures: OnePlus Nord 2, OnePlus Nord

The Nord came with Oxygen OS 10.5 based on Android 10 out of the box and received an Android 12 update as its last Android update while the OnePlus Nord 2 will get the software update up to Android 13. Both phones will get three years of security updates. 


(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)

OnePlus phones are always average when it comes to camera performance 一 but, that changed with the OnePlus 9 series. The OnePlus Nord 2 borrows the primary sensor from the flagship OnePlus 9/9 Pro. And, we can say that it's quite an improvement from the original Nord. 

It has a 50MP main shooter (Sony IMX766) with OIS, an 8MP ultra-wide lens and a 2MP monochrome shooter. To the front, the device comes with a 32MP snapper. In comparison, the last-gen device sports a 48MP main camera (Sony IMX586, OIS), an 8MP f/2.25 wide-angle camera, a 5MP depth sensor and a 2MP macro shooter. Over to the front, you get a 32MP primary snapper along with an 8MP wide-angle camera for groupies.

Battery and charging

OnePlus Nord 2 comes with super fast 65W charger (Nord CE in picture). (Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)

The OnePlus Nord 2 brings the super-fast charging and big battery from its flagship OnePlus 9 series. The Nord 2 packs in a 4,500mAh battery with support for 65W fast charging which can charge the device from 0 to 100% in just 30 minutes. In comparison, the Nord boasts a 4,115mAh battery with 30W fast charging which takes an hour to charge the device. 


The OnePlus Nord 2 starts at Rs 27,999 for the base 6GB+128GB variant, Rs 29,999 for the 8GB+128GB variant and Rs 34,999 for the top 12GB+256GB variant. For context, the Nord which is unavailable now was priced at Rs 24,999 for the 6GB+64GB variant. The 8GB+128GB variant for Rs 27,999 and the 12GB+256G at Rs 29,999. 

OnePlus Nord series specs comparison

(Image credit: Srivatsa Ramesh)
Swipe to scroll horizontally
Nord 2 vs Nord vs Nord CE
Header Cell - Column 0 Nord 2Nord Nord CE
ProcessorDimensity 1200 AISnapdragon 765GSnapdragon 750G
Display6.43" FHD+6.44" FHD+6.43" FHD+
Refresh rate90Hz90Hz90Hz
Rear camera50+8+2MP48+8+5+2MP64+8+2MP
Front camera32MP32+8MP16MP
Battery4,500mAh, 65W4115mAh, 30W4,500mAh, 30W
Headphone jackNoNoYes
Dual speakersYesNoNo
Weight189g 184g170g
Srivatsa Ramesh

Srivatsa is a prolific writer who spearheads the core writing team on tech news, buying guides, reviews, and all gadget articles. He is passionate about technology.