Carl Pei, co-founder, OnePlus. (Source: Twitter)
After parting ways with OnePlus last year, Carl Pei, the co-founder of the popular smartphone brand, has announced his new venture. He calls the brand “Nothing”, explaining that the concept behind the unusual name was that the company aims to create products that blend in with our lives invisibly.
“Nothing’s mission is to remove barriers between people and technology to create a seamless digital future,” he said in a press release.
“We believe that the best technology is beautiful, yet natural and intuitive to use. When sufficiently advanced, it should fade into the background and feel like nothing.”
The new project will be headquartered in London and has received initial seed investment from the likes of iPod inventor Tony Fadell; one of Twitch’s founders Kevin Lin; Reddit’s head honcho Steve Huffman; and popular YouTuber Casey Neistat.
Nothing will release its first products in the first half of this year.
Speaking with The Verge, Pei declined to mention what the products would be, but confirmed they will spread across multiple categories with the big aim to build up a new ecosystem of hardware.
“Right now... the team is being built, so we want to focus on simpler categories,” Pei told The Verge, “but as our team gains capabilities and skills we want to start moving up. The ultimate vision of having everything connected in a seamless way, that can only happen when you have multiple categories of products that are connected.”
Pei also confirmed that Nothing plans to make money by selling hardware first and that software will be something for the future. He told the publication that good hardware and software is a sound business decision, but admitted that they had not, “spent too much time thinking about the software portion of it”.
Pei also stressed that Nothing is an independently owned company with its own R&D department and besides using contract manufacturers for components, it will not re-label products between brands. The main goal for all Nothing’s products was to disappear into the background.
“I kind of envision a grass field with people having a picnic and there’s no screen, there’s no laptop screen, there’s no phone screen, there’s no smartwatch screen, there’s no billboard screen,” Pei told the publication. “That’s kind of the end state.”