You might dismiss the idea that OnePlus is going to launch into a cheaper space, but with some huge leaks suggesting that there's a OnePlus 8 Lite on the cards, that's what could be about to happen. The device has also been referred to as the OnePlus Z.

OnePlus found fame offering flagship specs at prices that were hard to beat. But in 2019 it changed direction, offering the OnePlus 7 Pro and moving itself into a higher price bracket. While it still continues with the solid sub-flagship offering, it seems the company is going to widen its offering to a lower price point.

Here's everything we know so far about the OnePlus 8 Lite or OnePlus Z.

OnePlus

OnePlus 8 Lite release date and price

  • 14 April launch event confirmed
  • £399 price likely

OnePlus has confirmed that it will be holding a launch event on 14 April for the OnePlus 8 series. That will include the OnePlus 8 and OnePlus 8 Pro, but could also include the OnePlus 8 Lite.

It's also been suggested that the OnePlus 8 Lite might not launch until July, although that could be the actual availability of the device.

On the pricing front, we've had one rumour suggesting that it might cost as little as £400. We suspect it will come to market at £399, which is the exact same price as the Samsung Galaxy A90 5G, which we're guessing is the natural rival to this phone.

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OnePlus 8 Lite design

  • 159.2 x 74 x 8.6mm
  • IP53 water protection
  • Aluminium alloy frame

There's been a couple of substantial leaks for the OnePlus 8 Lite and that has furnished us with approximate details. That puts the size of the phone close to the OnePlus 7T in terms of height and width, although it's a little thicker.

The rear panel is said to be glass, with curved edges towards the sides, but with the front display being flat overall, using 2.5D Corning Gorilla Glass 5. A USB-C port sits on the bottom, but there's no sign of a 3.5mm headphone socket, often commonplace on more affordable devices. 

The biggest thing about the design is the pronounced camera housing on the back. This sits off to the left-hand side and seems to be following the trend now established by the iPhone 11 Pro, making the numerous lenses prominent rather than trying to hide them in the design. It looks as though it retains the mute slider too, that hallmark of OnePlus devices staying in place.

A leaked spec sheet has suggests an IP53 water protection rating.

OnePlus 8 Lite specs and display

  • 6.4-inch AMOLED display, 2400 x 1080 pixel, 90Hz
  • MediaTek Dimensity 1000, 8GB RAM, 128/256GB 
  • 4000mAh battery, 30W Warp Charge

Leaked specs have furnished us with some details about the OnePlus 8 Lite. It's said to have a 6.4-inch AMOLED display with a 2400 x 1080 pixel resolution with a 90Hz refresh rate.

One thing we're pretty certain of, however, is the 90Hz display. At the launch of the OnePlus 7T, Carl Pei said on stage that OnePlus wouldn't be going back to slower refresh rates. We're expecting that to be the OnePlus 8 Lite's unique selling point - that fast refresh rate in a mid-range phone. This detail has also been confirmed by Ishan Agarwal, a Twitter leaker with a good track record.

It looks like OnePlus might be making this a more affordable model by going with MediaTek. The Dimensity 1000 is a 5G SoC, so this could be an affordable 5G handset - but it's noteworthy as a departure from Qualcomm which OnePlus has used in the past. There's 8GB RAM and 128/256GB storage rumoured, so there's still some impressive specs here, although we suspect it will also offer 6GB option.

There's no fingerprint scanner, so it probably uses an in-display scanner, most likely using optical scanning technology.

OnePlus 8 Lite cameras

  • Dual/triple rear cameras?
  • Punch hole front camera

One detail that's interesting is the punch hole front camera, meaning no notch and no pop-up. This is a bit of a change in direction for OnePlus, but one we're also seeing rumoured for the OnePlus 8 and OnePlus 8 Pro. Leaked specs suggest that it's a 32-megapixel sensor.

As for the number of cameras on the rear, we have a conflict in the leaks. The images show two cameras and the flash in the housing, while the leaked spec sheets suggest there's three cameras on the rear. Those rear cameras are suggested as 48-megapixel main, 16-megapixel ultra-wide and 12-megapixel telephoto, f/1.7, f/2.2 and f/2.4 respectively.

We're not sure exactly what the configuration will be here, but again, it's likely to be a way for OnePlus to control the price of this device.

OnePlus 8 Lite/OnePlus Z rumours so far

Here are all the rumours in chronological order with all the details about the OnePlus 8 Lite.

30 March 2020: OnePlus 8 Lite might launch as the OnePlus Z

A reputable leaker on Twitter has suggested that the OnePlus 8 Lite might launch under the OnePlus Z name.

30 March 2020: Official: OnePlus 8 series will launch on 14 April

OnePlus has confirmed that the OnePlus 8 series will be launched on 14 April.

4 March 2020: OnePlus 8 Lite could cost around £400 and launch on 14 April

A reliable Twitter leaker, Ishan Agarwal, has provided some pricing details, as well as suggesting the 14 April date.

3 March 2020: OnePlus 8 to launch in mid-April?

Rumours have moved over to suggest that OnePlus is going to launch the OnePlus 8 series in mid-April.

23 December 2019: Massive leak: Full specs of OnePlus 8 Lite revealed

A huge spec sheet leak has potentially revealed the full specs of the OnePlus 8 Lite.

9 December 2019: OnePlus 8 Lite renders appear, could signal return to mid-range pricing

Out of the blue, a render appeared for the OnePlus 8 Lite, a previously unconsidered phone.