OnePlus' Nord N200 had a simple hook: stuff 5G and a big battery into a low-priced phone. There were a few flaws, though, and the company is partly addressing them with the just-announced Nord N300 5G. The follow-up switches from the Snapdragon 480 chip to a speedier (if not exactly blazing) MediaTek Dimensity 810. You'll also find a 48MP main camera versus the N200's 13MP unit, a slightly larger 6.56-inch 90Hz display and faster 33W charging (up from 18W). Yes, the necessary charger comes in the box.
Other features will sound very familiar, for better or for worse. The 5,000mAh battery is still huge for the class, and the combination of a 3.5mm headphone jack and a microSD slot (now supporting up to 1TB) could prove appealing if you're no fan of wireless earbuds or paying extra for storage. There's just 64GB of space built-in, though, and the 2MP depth camera won't be thrilling. There's also a downgrade: the display resolution is just 1,612 x 720 versus the 2,400 x 1,080 of the N200.
The price may be sweet, at least. The Nord N300 5G will be available on November 3rd for $228 up-front as an exclusive for T-Mobile and its prepaid Metro brand. That lack of choice is unfortunate, but there's also a good chance your monthly instalment payments will be tiny.
OnePlus has a strong incentive to release the Nord N300, whether or not it represents a meaningful upgrade. The Nord series is a relatively hot seller in North America, with 1.5 million N200s expected to sell in 2022. While that figure won't give Apple or Samsung reason for pause, it's no mean feat for a budget device largely limited to one carrier in the US. The new model could keep that momentum going.