OnePlus: Is the Flagship Killer Brand Following Apple’s Selling Strategy?

Kenny Trinh
April 22, 2020

When you compare Apple to OnePlus, you’ll see that one plus is relatively new. Despite recently entering the mobile market, OnePlus has made rapid progress in the smartphone industry. They were able to release quality smartphones at an affordable price.

Their company motto “Never Settle” shows that smartphone companies should strive to improve and that customers shouldn’t settle for a substandard but pricey smartphone. By following this motto, OnePlus was able to gain fame and sell a lot of their smartphones and currently, they’re one of the best smartphones manufactures up to this day. 

Are they copying Apple?


One of the reasons OnePlus succeeded was thanks to its marketing. One notable marketing move was their “invite only” practice. This made it appear like OnePlus products were very rare and sought after. This marketing move was intended to  make customers feel special and entice them to buy OnePlus products. It worked and OnePlus smartphone products were being bought as soon as they were put on display. 


There have been cases of OnePlus selling more premium smartphones than Apple in India. The news made headlines and it shows that OnePlus is doing something right with their marketing. The “invite only” strategy sounds like something that Apple would do. Some people even speculate that OnePlus is mimicking Apple’s selling strategy and that it’s working out for them.


Before we can tell if they’re copying Apple’s strategy, we have to know how Apple and OnePlus sell their products and look at the similarities (if there are any).

What is Apple’s selling strategy?

Amazing Specs from the get-go

Apple’s recent iPhone 11 is a monster of a smartphone. It starts with 64GB of storage and you can work your way up to 512 GB. It also features the Apple A13 Bionic (7 nm+) processors which allow you to run any program at insanely fast speeds. The iPhone 11 boasts amazing imaging capabilities thanks to its two 12MP sensors that allow users to take angle snaps of the area. Lastly, the iPhone 11 has 11 hours of battery life which is surprising for a smartphone with its processing power and capabilities. 

iPhones might be very expensive but they do back this up with great specs and running programs smoothly. Now if you use a chromebook instead of an iPhone, you might want to check out some of these tips to speed it up.

Providing unique value

One of the main reasons why people keep buying Apple products despite the price is because of the value it has. Apple shows that the product outweighs the price, one way they show this is through its amazing specs but it also shows its value through its innovations as well. Apple products are labelled “different” or “special” by many consumers because of this, Apple products have a unique value that a lot of customers are willing to pay for.

Innovate, innovate, and innovate!

If there’s one thing that Apple is known for, its innovations. A lot of Apple products are known to be the leaders of innovation. One such example was the iPod which was the first music system to introduce a shuffle feature. It goes to show that Apple is the first to innovate and the first to profit through its innovations. 

Apple’s new iPhone, the latest iPhone SE, is an example of its latest innovations. It’s a budget iPhone that features above average specs similar to the iPhone 8. That means a 12-megapixel camera, a storage of at least 64 GB, and at least 3GB or RAM. It will also reintroduce the Touch ID home button which allows users to use their fingerprints as a security measure which is a big plus for people who don’t like facial recognition security.

OnePlus Selling Strategies

Invite System

One of the main reasons why OnePlus was so successful in its initial years is because of the invite system. It may seem like a bad idea for a new brand to be so exclusive but it worked out in the end. People who were invited felt special and they wouldn’t pass the opportunity to buy an iPhone which only a privileged few could buy.

Using Social Media Effectively

Enter the #NeverSettle messages. Using their motto as messages on their social media has helped improve the OnePlus brand. It shows that you don’t need to spend big bucks to get a good product. This message can be seen as a way of mocking Apple products while promoting their own. 

Apple has tons of aesthetic and design innovations which is one of the reasons why they’re so expensive. OnePlus, on the other hand, focuses more on performance and ease of use, making their products cheap but reliable.

A good example of this is the OnePlus 7T Pro is designed to deliver smooth performance for all of its users. The OnePlus 7T Pro also features longer battery life since it optimized its display panels to consume less power. It also features a 90Hz Fluid Display making it on par with a lot of gaming phones. Because of this people can play smoothly at a 90 Hz refresh rate allowing for competitive gameplay. 

Is the OnePlus selling strategy following Apple?

Looking at their marketing strategies, OnePlus had its own selling strategy. There have been cases where they’ve done better than Apple, which shows that OnePlus uses marketing strategies superior to Apple (in those cases). 

OnePlus does have similar marketing techniques to Apple like “Providing Unique value” to their products. Examples of this are the “invite system” they’ve used. But ultimately OnePlus is a different company from Apple. They have their own products and they use their own unique strategies to sell the said products.  


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