If you’ve been in the market for OnePlus One, the hugely impressive $299 Android smartphone that is available by invite only — thus far — then your luck is in. The startup has announced that it will make its first smartphone available to all members of the public, but for a one hour window only.
The impressive device will be available to buy for an hour on October 27, starting from 15:00 GMT — that’s 08:00 PST, or 11:00 EST. The company is allowing would-be customers to pre-order their phone from today, so there’s no need to stand still until then. Those who pre-order now but manage to grab an invite before October 27 can skip the queue and order their device right away, so there’s no danger of being stuck waiting.
OnePlus says the new public sale window will not replace its invitation system altogether, but — having suffered delays in the past — this step is evidence of greater confidence in its ability to reach larger numbers of people with its devices.
The company has been preparing itself for its sale hour, and it revealed that it sent out 50,000 invites during the first half of this month. “This was our way of testing our servers to make sure we are well-prepared for dealing with a large volume of orders,” OnePlus said.
That’s a hugely important point given the issues that other smartphone upstarts have run into from selling large numbers of devices over a short space of time online. Demand for Xiaomi’s devices crashed Flipkart’s website in India back in July, although the Chinese company has generally experienced few issues with its web-only sales model.
Either way, OnePlus’s one hour window is a far better move than its last major strategy, in which it caused controversy for a sexist contest to sell The One.