Earlier this week, OnePlus unveiled its latest budget handset in the OnePlus Nord N200. This device is rather impressive as it’s the company’s cheapest smartphone to feature 5G connectivity. However, there’s a larger problem at play here, and it has nothing to do with the sub-$250 price or the specs.
Instead, it has everything to do with the embarrassing software update plans that OnePlus continues to disappoint with. OnePlus confirmed to 9to5Google that it will only provide “one major software update”, meaning that since the Nord N200 comes with Android 11, it will likely only be upgraded to Android 12 and that’s it. From there, you might have to dive into the world of rooting so you can try and install some custom ROMs onto the device.
Thankfully, there will be more updates arriving for the Nord N200, even after it receives the Android 12 update. OnePlus also confirmed that it is committing to “three years of maintenance updates” for the N200. These are the more minor updates that we see on a semi-regular basis, such as the monthly security patches released by Google and provided to OEMs. What we don’t know is whether OnePlus will be sticking to a monthly schedule, a quarterly schedule, or even a yearly schedule.
We’re hoping that the partnership and integration between OnePlus and Oppo actually starts to pay dividends when it comes to software updates. Budget OnePlus phones are not the only ones to see frustrating update schedules, as there was the whole Android 12 debacle for the OnePlus 9 series. Attempting to install the Android 12 beta left phones bricked, as the company failed to mention that you needed to unlock the bootloader before installing it. And that doesn’t even cover the myriad of issues plaguing the OnePlus 7 and 7T owners who were awaiting the Android 11 update.