OnePlus 8 could boast a feature that OnePlus was adamant it wouldn’t include

OnePlus has never been a big proponent of wireless charging. The Shenzhen-based company has always maintained it wouldn’t implement the technology into its smartphones until it could achieve the same speeds and efficiencies as its fast-wired solution, dubbed Warp Charge 30T.

The latter is one of the fastest charging options on the market. Only Oppo’s SuperVOOC charging system, which can refill a handset with a 4,000mAh battery cell from 0 to 100 percent in 30 minutes, currently beats Dash Charging 30T, which can top-up a handset to roughly 70 percent charge (OnePlus says that’s more than enough to get you through a full day of normal usage) in half an hour. For comparison, Apple says the 18W fast-charger included in the box with the iPhone 11 Pro can hit 50 percent in 30 minutes.

Due to the success of its wired charging, OnePlus has shied away from Qi wireless charging, which is typically much slower and, honestly, a little finicky. If your handset isn’t placed in the exact spot – or slips – it will stop charging immediately. However, with a growing number of bars and restaurants building Qi wireless charging spots into the tables (not to mention furniture stores now selling bedside tables and the like with the charging included inside the wood), OnePlus’ omission could put customers off.

“The technology for wireless charging is not terribly complex. We could implement it but we haven’t wanted to because it’s been too slow,” CEO Pete Lau said in an interview with Ubergizmo back in November 2018. “So we haven’t seen it being up to the level that we want in driving value for the users and their device experience.”

The plucky Chinese company could be set to change its stance on wireless charging though. The firm has been spotted joining the Wireless Power Consortium (WPC) – the standards body that handles the Qi wireless charging system used by every single smartphone, blog MobileScout reports. This is the clearest indication yet that OnePlus has plans to adopt the Qi standard and embrace wireless charging. The company already uses glass on the back of its handsets – so it wouldn’t require a huge redesign.

OnePlus 8 could be the cheapest OnePlus phone in years

If the rumour proves to be correct and the OnePlus 8 – believed to be the successor to the OnePlus 7 Pro and OnePlus 7T Pro launched last year – ships with wireless charging, it wouldn’t be the first time OnePlus backtracked on a bolshy public statement.

The Shenzhen-based smartphone start-up previously cautioned users that it would keep the 3.5mm headphone port in place, before ditching it after a survey of OnePlus form users found that 59 percent already owned Bluetooth headphones.

Elsewhere, the OnePlus 8 is widely-tipped to drop the pop-up selfie camera in favour of a cut-out in the AMOLED display. Faster internals courtesy of Qualcomm and an improved rear-camera technology are also expected from the company.

Thankfully, there’s not too long to wait to find out exactly what is planned. OnePlus typically holds a hardware showcase between May and June, so we’re likely to see the successor to the OnePlus 7, OnePlus 7 Pro and OnePlus 7 Pro 5G in the next few months.