OnePlus abandons its fancy StyleSwap covers

Photo: OnePlus

Photo: OnePlus

The OnePlus One’s fancy StyleSwap covers, one of the things that made the handset unique, have been abandoned before they even went on sale. OnePlus says that it ran into “technical difficulties” during mass production, and the number of covers that passed its quality control tests was “much lower” than the company had anticipated.

The Chinese company first alerted customers to the manufacturing difficulties in late August — the same month the bamboo StyleSwap cover was set to go on sale. At the time, it said that it had discovered a “minor flaw” with its production samples and that they had to be returned to the lab to be fixed.

As it turns out, that minor flaw was actually a much more significant one. Swapping the covers can “leave the back cover slightly creaky or loose, and it risks damage to the battery which is exposed for a short time,” OnePlus said in its latest forum announcement. It has now been forced to half production of the StyleSwap covers altogether.

OnePlus admits that the One’s design makes it difficult to frequently switch back covers, and it concedes that it “could have designed the removal process of the back covers better.” Nevertheless, it will still be selling the small number of bamboo covers that did pass its quality control tests, with “ explicit instructions on how to replace your cover without damaging the cover, phone or battery.”

Limited edition StyleCovers in denim and Kevlar may also come later.

OnePlus says it is “disappointed we were not able to deliver on this,” and it promises to iron out these issues for the OnePlus One 2. But unfortunately for fans, it’s yet another broken promise to add to an already long list.