OnePlus is just a week away from unveiling its next phone. The company announced today that it’ll be holding a launch event for the OnePlus 5T — a rumored revamped, larger version of this year’s OnePlus 5 — on Thursday, November 16th.
We’re getting some launch details early, too. OnePlus says the 5T will go on sale in North American and Europe just a week later, on November 21st. It’ll be widely available in India starting November 28th, and it’ll come to China December 1st.
Launch events are usually held for members of the media only, so that press can report on and get impressions of new devices. But OnePlus is doing something a little differently: it’s holding the event in Brooklyn and will allow fans to come, so long as they buy a $40 ticket. The event will also be available to stream for free online.
Ticket sales are an unusual practice for a corporate launch event, but OnePlus says this isn’t just another way to make money. The company says that all proceeds will go to charity, and that ticket holders will also receive “swag worth up to $70.” It hasn’t said which charity it’ll be donating to or what the giveaways will consist of.
OnePlus is in large part built on branding and hype, so bringing customers into the fold for a phone launch event may be a savvy move. The company sells phones that are only somewhat modified from those that Oppo makes (they share a parent company), and it’s largely distinguished itself through its marketing prowess. It’s pretty clear that’s happening again here. If anyone can tell me what the OnePlus 5T has to do with this robot, I’m all ears:
Update November 6th, 7:45PM ET: After publication, OnePlus reached out to say that it would be donating proceeds from ticket sales to charity and offering swag to buyers; that information hadn’t been detailed at the time of the announcement, but a representative says it was “always part of the plan.” This article originally called the ticket sales an “an unusual way to make money off of fans” by charging them to attend an advertising event.