Like most phones, the new OnePlus 10 Pro 5G will be sold unlocked. Its 5G performance, however, will vary considerably based on which US carrier you have. And if you’re on AT&T, it won’t work with 5G at all.
OnePlus’ latest will work fine on T-Mobile’s low-band and midband 5G networks (which it calls “Extended Range 5G” and “Ultra Capacity 5G,” respectively). This makes sense as T-Mobile also happens to be the only carrier offering the $899 phone directly to its users.
The Chinese phone-maker is also working with Verizon to get the phone certified for its low- and midband 5G networks (what Verizon calls “5G Nationwide” and “5G Ultra Wideband,” respectively) though it is unclear if the phone will be ready to go on Verizon’s network when it releases on April 14.
With AT&T, however, OnePlus confirmed to CNET that there are no plans to support its 5G networks.
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Putting an AT&T SIM card into an unlocked OnePlus 10 Pro, I was limited to just 4G LTE, 3G or 2G cellular connections. This was despite the phone listing the proper technical support for AT&T’s low-band 5G network (bands n2, n5 and n66, for those keeping track at home) as well as the right band for its C-band midband 5G network (n77) on its spec sheet.
The OnePlus 10 Pro lacks millimeter-wave antennas and therefore won’t work on the higher-frequency flavor of 5G regardless of carrier.
The issue appears to be that OnePlus does not want to get the device certified for AT&T’s network. When you’re spending nearly $900 on a phone, you likely are planning to use it for at least the next few years. The lack of 5G support may not matter right now given the state of AT&T’s current 5G rollout, but with the carrier set to get more aggressive with its network upgrades later this year, this hole could become much more noticeable in the not-too-distant future.
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