Reddit AMA’s, or Ask Me Anything, are some of the greatest things in the world. The setup basically goes something like this: a company signs up to send its representatives out to the ever-popular Reddit message board to answer any questions given to them by users there. It’s basically a new-age press conference in which the people asking the question don’t need journalistic credentials, just enough of a brain to ask a civilized question that can get an official response. OnePlus has been in quite a pickle since launching its first phone, the OnePlus One, and while we loved the heck out of the device there have been some serious issues with actually getting the device launched for mass-market consumption in the first place. The offender here is the invite system they’ve set up, where you need to win an invite in order to even be able to purchase the phone.
The invite system has been explained many times, but the AMA probably does the best job of explaining exactly why OnePlus decided to go with invites instead of a pre-order system. Essentially it all has to do with inventory and not having a large amount of capital to purchase all the components needed in order to get lots of units out at a time. Not only that but the representative from OnePlus goes on to talk about how some components take longer than others to be delivered, and obviously without all the components you won’t have a working phone to ship out. The rep goes on to state that there’s no way for them to accurately estimate when all the components will be in hand, so they send out invites when everything is ready to go so that customers aren’t waiting ages to get their phones.
Now it looks like they’ve done enough work on the back-end of things to finally get enough components to start a pre-order system in October. This will ensure a bigger supply of phones and the ability to actually purchase one without needing to be part of an exclusive club. While the components that make up the OnePlus One will still be high-end throughout the end of the year, the question is whether or not they’ve lost their window of opportunity to capitalize on the market. At $300 and $350 for the 16GB and 64GB models respectively, the OnePlus One will still best nearly anything that comes out this year, so it’s entirely possible that once the negative energy floating around the Internet disperses a bit OnePlus might be able to capitalize on their product and price point once more with this new pre-order system.