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OnePlus Concept One first impressions: up close with the revolutionary disappearing cameras

OnePlus was present at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) this year for the very first time to showcase an ingenious smartphone called the Concept One. The OnePlus Concept One is the extension of the brand’s work with McLaren and utilises colour-shifting glass technology to hide the camera module when not in use. The smartphone comes as OnePlus’ vision for future smartphones and is the first of many, as the brand had announced its plans to showcase new concept devices every year that could possibly shape future smartphones. The OnePlus Concept One is currently on a world tour comprising North America, Europe and India. Pricebaba spent some hands on time with the device, and here is a short account of our experience as well as the 360-degree view of the OnePlus Concept One.

Since the Concept One has been developed in collaboration with McLaren, it uses the same Papaya Orange leather for the back panel as found on the McLaren seats. On the Concept One, OnePlus has also replaced the anodized aluminium chassis with PVD aluminium featuring a subtle gold paint job that matches the gold stitching on the back.

Apart from these, the port and button placement on the smartphone is pretty standard with an elevating selfie camera on top, notification slider with the power button on right, volume keys on left and SIM tray, USB-C port with a speaker grille at the bottom. You can take a look at the smartphone from all angles in the gallery below.

Let’s talk about the highlight of the OnePlus Concept One now. Oneplus has utilised the electrochromic glass over the triple-camera array, which switches between fully transparent and opaque. The glass is triggered by the camera app, which means it hides the triple camera array and the LED flash when the camera app is off but makes them visible as soon as you open up the app. The more practical use of the electrochromic glass is that it also doubles up as the ND filter for the camera. In layman’s terms, the camera should be able to capture good dynamic range, details and colours even in super bright lighting conditions.

As the name suggests, the Concept One is a concept smartphone and won’t go into mass production soon. However, with OnePlus having already showcased the technology on this device, we can expect the use of electrochromic glass on future OnePlus devices.

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