OnePlus will unveil its latest flagship smartphones – the OnePlus 9 5G series – at a streaming launch event at 9 a.m. EST on March 23. And when these phones debut, they’ll ship cameras tuned by 180-year-old Swedish camera maker Hasselblad.
“With OnePlus’ high-end computational hardware and photography, and Hasselblad’s rich aesthetic knowledge in traditional photography, I am confident that the OnePlus 9 series will be a major leap forward in our ability to deliver a flagship camera of superior quality”. OnePlus CEO Pete Lau said in a press release.
The news of the partnership won’t surprise fans of the company so much: a unique OnePlus device the sports brand Hasselblad has been around for weeks. And more recently, OnePlus has shared a number of space themed teasers which obliquely refer to the agreement. (Hasselblad has supplied NASA with cameras for use in space for decades, including the venerable Hasselblad 500ELs who landed on the moon with Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin.) But what does this deal actually mean for the OnePlus camera experience?
For starters, the OnePlus 9 series is expected to benefit from an “advanced color grading” jointly developed by the two companies. In short, users should expect more accurate and natural-looking colors in photos taken with the OnePlus 9 Pro and beyond. And since Hasselblad deals almost exclusively with professional-grade medium format cameras, it is perhaps natural that special attention has been paid to the Pro mode of the OnePlus 9 series. In addition to typical features such as direct camera control. ‘ISO, focus, exposure time, etc., Hasselblad Pro mode also allows users to take photos as 12-bit RAW files and work with an editing interface inspired by the own Hasselblad’s Phocus image processing application. Meanwhile, on the video front, OnePlus says its Hasselblad-branded cameras will offer “enhanced” HDR video recording, as well as support for 4K 120FPS and 8K 30FPS recording.
Hasselblad bits aside, the OnePlus 9 Pro is expected to ship with four rear cameras, and the company revealed a few new details about them this morning. The phone’s main camera will use one of Sony’s new IMX789 sensors, which we’ve heard has been custom-developed for the upcoming one. OPPO Find X3. (Considering OnePlus’ shared corporate parentage with OPPO, this really shouldn’t come as a shock.) OnePlus has also confirmed that its latest ultra-wide camera will use a so-called “free-form” lens that virtually eliminates any barrel distortion in these spacious photos. .
With all of this in mind, there are a few things to note. For one thing, despite OnePlus’ adoption of space imagery in its recent teasers, the company made no mention of a pixel-type astrophotography mode. Additionally, Hasselblad’s deal with OnePlus will last for three years, and it’s unclear how OnePlus’ approach to color science might change after the partnership expires. And this isn’t Hasselblad’s first attempt at partnering with a smartphone, either – years ago, it partnered with Motorola to create a separate 12-megapixel camera which are magnetically attached to Moto Z smartphones. (Spoiler alert: everything was fine.)
As it turns out, the OnePlus 9 is just one part of the company’s plans to set new standards for smartphone photography. Over the next three years, OnePlus has pledged $ 150 million to “further develop” four camera research and development centers around the world, as well as to experiment with new camera components and technologies to make their mark. debut in future devices. On the agenda right now: developing panoramic cameras with a 140-degree field of view and new lenses to improve autofocus for selfies, though the company was quick to note that its efforts could expand well. beyond these projects.
OnePlus cameras have steadily improved over the years, but so far have lagged behind competing offerings from companies like Samsung and Apple. With this multi-year deal in place, OnePlus looks set to dramatically improve its photography game, but for now, view us with cautious optimism. Hopefully, the company’s March 23 launch event will have plenty of sample images – and juicier details about its Hasselblad deal – for us to think about.