The first signs regarding what we can expect from Oppo’s next flagship phone series for 2022 have started to emerge - including the surprising news that it may not be called the Find X4 after all.

Three phones are rumoured, including the latest premium Snapdragon and Dimensity mobile chipsets, faster charging, and a camera system led by Oppo's freshly-announced dedicated NPU – the MariSilicon X. Here’s all we know so far about the Oppo Find X4 (or perhaps Find X5) series.

When will the Oppo Find X4 be released?

While there’s no official release date as such, at Qualcomm's December 2021 Snapdragon Summit Oppo confirmed that its next flagship device will launch in the first quarter of 2022.

Considering the last two generations of Find X flagships arrived in March, it stands to reason that Oppo won't change tack, leading us to assume we'll see the Find X4 series make its debut on March 2022.

In previous years we've seen the Find X range include regular, Pro, Lite, and Neo models. Leaker Digital Chat Station has predicted we'll see three phones when the series debuts this time around, so it looks like either the Lite or Neo may not make it - or perhaps will just launch later in the year.

Will it be called the Find X4 or Find X5?

In the same post where he predicted three models, Digital Chat Station also did something unexpected: he used the name 'Find X5'.

It now looks like Oppo may be planning to skip X4 and go straight to X5. This isn't entirely unheard of - 4 is an unlucky number in Chinese culture, similar to 13 in the West, and it's not uncommon for brands to skip straight past it in their phone numbering.

For now it's still uncertain which name Oppo intends to use, and we'll need more leaks to get a clearer picture of what name to expect.

How much will the Oppo Find X4 cost?

We don’t have any details on the cost of the Oppo Find X4 phones at the time of writing, so we need to look to the previous entries to give us a clue. Here’s how the last couple of generations of the Pro model have lined up:

As you can see, these are flagship devices and as such come with flagship prices. They’re still cheaper than the closest rivals – such as the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra, which will set you back £1,149/€1,249/US$1,299.99, but it’s a fair wedge of cash you’ll have to hand over for a premium handset.

If Oppo holds to the pricing of previous models, then obviously you’ll have to save up if you want to buy one. There is a possibility of a slight increase though, with the global chip shortage and pandemic-related supply chain restraints seeing a creep in costs that are being handed on to the consumer.

What about the Oppo Find X4 series specs and design?

Oppo surprised us all with the outlandish design of the Find X3 Pro, and if our first renders are anything to go by then the company is about to do it again.

Prolific leaker OnLeaks released a few renders together with Indian site Prepp of what they claim is the upcoming Pro model in the line-up, "based on early prototype schematics."

Oppo Find X4 Pro OnLeaks render

The curved camera module of the X3 Pro returns, but now with an even stranger irregular design. We can't say we're fans, but then we didn't love the Find X3 Pro camera when it first leaked and it eventually won us over.

We can see a triple rear camera with what appear to be two main lenses and a third smaller shooter - so one lens fewer than the Find X3 Pro. That makes us wonder if this is actually the regular Find X4, rather than the Pro variant, but for now it's unclear.

As for the internals, Oppo has now confirmed that the Find X4 series will use both the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 and the MediaTek Dimensity 9000. It's most likely that the regular Find X4 will be powered by the Dimensity, with the Snapdragon found in the Find X4 Pro - we're not sure what to expect in the third Neo or Lite model, but probably a cheaper chip than either of these.

Both chips are built on a 4nm process and actually feature fairly similar specs, so don't expect a huge performance gulf between the two handsets. 

Following day one of the company's annual Inno Day technological showcase, which took place on 14 December, we were also introduced to Oppo's own MariSilicon X NPU - the company's first in-house chip designed to assist with advanced image processing and confirmed to be featured in the first Find X phone of 2022.

Oppo MariSilicon X spec breakdown

Rather than relying on the Snapdragon and Dimensity chips' integrated ISPs, Oppo has built its 6nm standalone neural imaging chipset to focus on the particular areas it wants to enhance in its flagship camera experience. The MariSilicon X promises greatly improved dynamic range (that's reportedly four times broader than what the Find X3 Pro's cameras are capable of capturing), along with the ability to run the X3 Pro's AI noise reduction algorithm 20 times faster than the X3 Pro itself currently can.

Oppo also teased a retractable camera system in the run-up to Inno Day 2021, detailing a 1/1.56in sensor (the same size as the 50Mp main sensor used on the Find X3 Pro) with an f/2.4 aperture and an equivalent 50mm focal length (which typically equates to about a 2x zoom, going by the focal length of most phones' main camera sensors).

It's also shown being sprayed with water, suggesting some degree of ingress protection and – like many phones that used pop-up selfie cameras in the past – fall detection that retracts the lens when the phone detects that it's falling to the floor.

What the video – which was first officially shared on 7 December – doesn't detail is whether or not it's destined for the Find X4 Pro, or simply a proof of concept piece. We think this is unlikely to make it into a Find X4 phone - especially since nothing like it is seen in OnLeaks' renders - but it's not out of the question yet.

Beyond all that, there’s not much we know about the rest of the specifications for the Oppo Find X4 series at this stage.

We have seen some reports – including one from GSMArena – suggesting that the the X4 Pro's camera resolution will remain the same as on 2021's Find X3 Pro. This suggests a configuration with a 50Mp f/1.8 26mm main camera, a 50Mp f/2.2 16mm 110˚ ultrawide, a 13Mp f/2.4 52mm telephoto, and a 3Mp f/3.0 microscope lens – albeit with tweaks to the sensors to improve performance.

Oppo Find X5 Pro OnLeaks render

Tipster Digital Chat Station claims that the battery fast-charging speeds will go up from the 65W found on the Find X3 Pro to a more rapid 80W, which should mean you can go from 0% to 100% in a shorter period of time. This will no doubt impress in practice, as in our review of the Oppo Find X3 Pro we were able to fully recharge the device in just over 30 minutes. Hopefully, the X4 Pro will also retain the fast wireless charging feature from its predecessor, as that was also pretty damn quick – fully recharging our test unit in 80 minutes.

DCS's leak also points to a familiar 6.7in QHD+ AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate, while the front camera should sport a 32Mp resolution.

In the meantime, take a look at our roundup of the best smartphones to see other worthwhile flagships competing for your money.