Even though the OnePlus One, one of the most exciting high-end Android handsets set to release so far this year, will soon be available to customers in many markets at a very affordable price compared to competitors, not all interested buyers will be able to get one as easily as expected.
The phone, which promises to deliver a better performance than other newly launched flagships, will sell for under $400 in 16 initial markets across the globe. OnePlus has already promised that the shopping experience should be quite smooth, no matter where the buyers order a One from. But in a new announcement, it revealed a major issue that will potentially cripple the shopping experience of some buyers.
Apparently the OnePlus One will be available on an invitation basis only at first, meaning that only those people who get an invite will be able to order the handset.
“To solve these problems [fast stock sell out, delays, manufacturing issues,] we have created a much more user friendly way of buying the device through the OnePlus Invite System,” the company wrote. “With an invite, you can be 100% sure that you’ll actually be able to buy it, and it ships within a few days. In contrast to staying up in the middle of the night trying to buy one along with 20,000 other people. So in the true spirit of the OnePlus name, a good product gets spread by word of mouth, shared among friends for that extra personalized touch.”
The invites will be made available through “friends, contests” and on the OnePlus forum. Once a person buys the phone, he or she will be able to invite other people in the future. “In the beginning, they’ll be available in limited quantities, but as time progresses they’ll become easier and easier to come by,” the company said.
At this time, OnePlus One invites aren’t available to anyone. It’s not clear at this time how many One units OnePlus will have available at launch.