OnePlus has confirmed that the least-expensive variant of the OnePlus 9 Pro, its best and most expensive smartphone, won’t come to North America. Those living in North America are stuck paying $1,069 for the the 256GB model while the rest of the world can buy the 128GB base model for just $969.
In a statement to Android Police, OnePlus explained that supply constraints are keeping the base model OnePlus 9 Pro from coming to the United States or Canada. This is an odd explanation, given that the 128GB and 256GB OnePlus 9 Pro configurations are practically identical—the only defining factors are RAM and storage.
The OnePlus 9 Pro 8×128 GB variant was originally set to be sold in North America for $969. Unfortunately, due to unforeseen supply constraints specific to North American devices, we recently concluded it is no longer possible to bring this configuration to the United States and Canada. In North America we are prioritizing the 12×256 GB version to ensure our users have access to the highest spec device.
Still, supply constraints could make a North American 128GB OnePlus 9 Pro release difficult. Not only would OnePlus need to source more mmWave 5G hardware for its North American release (something that’s skipped in global releases), but it would need to adjust its manufacturing process, which may not be worth the trouble half a year after the 9 Pro’s launch.
The announcement still comes as a disappointment, though. OnePlus initially promised to launch both configurations of the 9 Pro in North America, and the average buyer would be happy to sacrifice some RAM and storage for a $100 discount. If you want a more affordable OnePlus flagship, you’re stuck waiting until the company releases a followup next year.