OnePlus 7 image leaked ahead of launch
OnePlus 7 image leaked ahead of launch @Steven_Sbw/Twitter screen-grab

2019 is setting new challenges for smartphone makers, including the ones who pledged to disrupt the market. OnePlus is preparing for the big release of OnePlus 7 as well as a 5G smartphone, a prototype of which will be shown at MWC 2019 in Barcelona this month, but it won't be taking the spotlight alone.

Ahead of OnePlus 7's launch, Vivo's sub-brand in China iQoo is making waves with teasers for the upcoming smartphone. The smartphone is expected to be a flagship killer and iQoo's teasers suggest a potential OnePlus 7 competition is underway.

In a recent teaser posted on Weibo, iQoo confirmed that the new smartphone, also its first, will be launched in Shenzhen, China on March 1. In another post, the company confirmed that the smartphone will feature Qualcomm's latest and powerful Snapdragon 855 chipset, 12GB RAM, 256GB storage and 4,000mAh battery with 44W fast charging.

Additional information was also confirmed in the teaser, which reveals the smartphone will have a USB Type-C port, NFC, in-display fingerprint scanner and Super HDR camera technology, which was launched by Vivo last year.

Even with such impressive features, there's no word on what the smartphone will be called. iQoo is only using words like "raw" and "powerful" to describe the phone, which doesn't come as a surprise considering the hinted specs.

Even with such disruptive specs, OnePlus or even Xiaomi won't have much to fear. Both the companies have made their presence global (more or less), and iQoo seems to target China for the moment. Are there any plans to go international with this new device? There's no clarity on it, but iQoo might reveal more information on March 1.

But major companies launching sub-brands is a popular idea and quite a successful one. Xiaomi, Oppo and others have already done it, and it's only fitting to see Vivo do it as well to keep up with the competition. Vivo's backing for iQoo could work in the new sub-brand's favour, but it remains to be seen how far it will go.

At the moment, interested folks can register for the event and few lucky ones will get to watch the event live from China.