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OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei launches Nothing. No, really

OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei has announced his next venture, and it’s, well, Nothing. No, we’re not belittling Pei’s announcement — Nothing is the name of Pei’s new consumer technology company. The inspiration for this unusual name can be found on the firm’s Twitter page, where the profile states that “technology should fade into the background and feel like nothing.”

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

Pei himself is already having fun with the Nothing name. Pei wrote the following on his own Twitter account an hour before the announcement: “We might announce nothing in the end, let’s see…,” followed by a laughing emoji. We expect many similar wordplay gags to come, especially when the company launches its first products.

What will Nothing produce? It’s not clear yet. Despite Pei’s background in smartphones, there’s no indication Nothing will also make phones, with the press release saying it will release “its first smart devices in the first half of this year.” Smart devices really could mean anything from smart home products to wearables and headphones to health tech.

Although that’s the only hint we get from the official announcement, there was a rumor the brand would concentrate on audio-related hardware, but this has not been confirmed. Pei does share the company’s mission. though, which gives some insight into the way it will approach its products:

“It’s been a while since anything interesting happened in tech. It is time for a fresh breeze of change. Nothing’s mission is to remove barriers between people and technology to create a seamless digital future. We believe that the best technology is beautiful, yet natural and intuitive to use.”

Pei announced he was leaving OnePlus in October 2020, saying he’d take some time off before launching his new project. He started the company with Pete Lau in 2013, and had been instrumental in creating the firm’s products and image. In-between announcing his departure and now, Pei raised $7 million from various investors (names include Twitch co-founder Kevin Lin, Web Summit’s Paddy Cosgrave, and YouTuber Casey Neistat) to start Nothing.

OnePlus has built an incredible community in a surprisingly short time, and consistently launches well-made, exciting, and desirable products, making any company under Pei’s guidance one to watch.

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