OnePlus, the Chinese smartphone maker owned by Oppo, launched a new product line named Ace, targeting the global mobile gaming market. The company released the first model of the series on Thursday, pricing at RMB 2,499 ($384).

Why it matters: OnePlus is expanding its offering to the global mobile gaming market after launching OnePlus 9R last year.

  • Chinese phone makers, like Xiaomi, have been known to use game performance metrics to sell their phones. OnePlus is vying to be a strong competitor in this vertical. 
  • The mobile gaming market is rapidly expanding, and the global revenue of the sector will reach $116.1 billion in 2024, as estimated by global gaming insight firm Newzoo.

Details: On Tuesday, OnePlus revealed the new Ace product line for mobile gaming, alongside a new entrance level True Wireless Stereo (TWS) earbuds in a release event.

  • The first model of Ace is powered by a customized processor designed by MediaTek. The 8100-MAX processor is said to be optimized for high-performance games and low-light videography. The new phone also features a 6.7-inch and 120 refresh rate screen supplied by a Chinese display maker BOE, and comes with a fingerprint scanner, which supports heart rate detection. OnePlus also announced an external cooler which they claim to improve overheating issues in mobile gaming.
  • The names of the series, Ace, and the black and blue case color cater to OnePlus’ targeted users of mobile games. In many games, the term ace refers to a player who has defeated all enemies. The black and blue color versions of the phone also go by the names Kaihei and Huilan, which are gaming terms in popular games Dota.

Context: OnePlus merged with Oppo, another major smartphone brand in China, last year and is now an independent brand under the Oppo umbrella, focusing on overseas markets.

  • In the premium smartphone market, where phones sell for over $400, OnePlus ranked fourth in North America in terms of sales in 2021. The brand is even more popular in India, where it is listed second among premium smartphones, behind Apple.
  • On the brand’s eighth anniversary last year, Liu Zuohu, the founder of OnePlus and CPO of Oppo, announced that the company had shipped 10 million phones globally since it began operating in 2013.

Ward Zhou is a tech reporter based in Shanghai. He covers stories about industry of digital content, hardware, and anything geek. Reach him via ward.zhou[a] or Twitter @zhounanyu.