CES 2020: OnePlus Concept One phone with disappearing cameras unveiled

The design of the OnePlus Concept One is inspired by McLaren 720S Spider sports car.

After teasing the Concept One smartphone last week, OnePlus has finally unveiled the device at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) at Las Vegas.

The OnePlus Concept One looks like a lot like the OnePlus 7T Pro (review) with a notch-less display and a pop-up selfie camera. However, what makes the Concept One stand apart is its color-shifting glass technology that creates the illusion of 'disappearing cameras' and its leather back.

OnePlus Concept One smartphone

OnePlus Concept One smartphone

OnePlus Concept One: How do the rear cameras disappear?

Let's talk about the rear design of the phone a little more, which is essentially the highlight. At the back, in the middle of the orange leather, there is a class cutout at the top, which sports a vertical triple camera system that is neatly tucked under an electrochromic glass. Now here is where the disappearing camera magic is: When a current is applied to glass, it can swiftly change from opaque to transparent. This glass is used for sunroofs of some luxury cars, airplane windows and also for buildings.

Thanks to the electrochromic glass, the cameras remain invisible until the camera is turned on. When the camera app is shut, the camera setup goes back to being invisible.

OnePlus says it takes only 0.7 seconds for the glass to transition from transparent to opaque and the other way around.

As rumoured earlier, the design of the Concept One is inspired by McLaren 720S Spider sports car. The backside of the device has a Papaya Orange stitched leather. It features an aluminum alloy frame, which is built with a new vapor deposition process which gives it a shiny gold finish.

OnePlus CEO and founder Pete Lau says, “This concept phone is a significant experiment into the future form of smartphones. OnePlus started this initiative with the goal of bringing the “burdenless” user experience to the next level. The invisible camera stands as a new form of camera design, one that spares the user from the compromises of current camera layouts.”

Notably, being a 'concept' device, OnePlus may or may not bring this smartphone to the market. It's only if the company sees the practicality and usability of the technology, should it bring it to the shelves.

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