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Black Sheep: the story of it took so long to get OnePlus 3T in Midnight Black

The Midnight Black color option of the OnePlus 3T seems new, its barely over a week old, if you count the colette limited edition. However, the behind-the-scene video tells a very different story – Black was the original color of the OnePlus 3.

It goes back to the beginning – the OnePlus One and its signature Sandstone Black. Its successor also featured Sandstone, but OnePlus heard a growing voice in the community that asked for an aluminum body. In a poll, aluminum outweighed Sandstone.

And so the design team set out to make a black aluminum OnePlus 3. Unfortunately, yield proved low as getting a perfect black was tricky. Especially matte black, since the designers did not want a fingerprint mess that glossy black backs inevitably become. Even Midnight Black features an anti-fingerprint coating.

Currently, only 600 Gunmetal bodies out of 1,000 produced pass inspection but the numbers were much worse for the black model – 400 out of 1,000. It took over a year to get the manufacturing process of black metal bodies to where OnePlus needed them (now Gunmetal and Midnight Black are on par).