OnePlus 7 is no longer the “flagship killer”

OnePlus has grown from its underdog underpinnings. And I mean really grown. The days of the “affordable smartphone with flagship-level specs” is long gone. The OnePlus today sheds its “flagship killer” reputation for good. With the new OnePlus 7 family (yes, not one device but a couple), OnePlus not only propels itself into real flagship territory, taking on the likes of Apple, Samsung and Huawei, but also setting a new benchmark for speed and performance.

 OnePlus 7 Pro

OnePlus’ new journey starts with the OnePlus 7 Pro. It’s the most powerful and biggest smartphone OnePlus has ever made.

It packs a 6.67-inch QHD+ Fluid AMOLED display that boasts 93 percent screen-to-body ratio, HDR10+ support and pushes a maximum of 800 nits of brightness. Not quite as bright as the Samsung Galaxy S10+ but amongst the best of the breed. The curved panel has a fluid 90Hz refresh rate, great for games. The display is so good that it even impressed the boys at DisplayMate, who gave it an A+ rating.

The display also features Horizontal Light – a feature where edges of the screen illuminates to let you know you have new notifications.

The near-bezel-less looks trick, like OPPO’s Find X, Vivo NEX and Mi MIX 3, made possible by integrating a pop-up selfie camera ala the NEX. The 16MP selfie shooter takes 0.53 seconds to elevate and OnePlus says the pop-up module has been extensively tested for 300,00 times. That’s equivalent to 50 times a day for 16.5 years. And that’s a lot of selfies.

The OnePlus 7 Pro selfie camera has a safety mechanism in place, much like the OPPO Find X. If it detects a free fall, the device will automatically retract the camera to prevent any potential damage.

The camera department hasn’t been one of OnePlus’ strengths but this changes with the OnePlus 7 Pro. In fact, it’s rated second on DxOMark Mobile, scoring 111 points overall, just a single point behind tied champions Huawei P30 Pro and Samsung Galaxy S10 5G.

The high scores are attributed to the impressive triple camera system on the back—a 48MP f/1.6 main shooter (Sony IMX586 sensor) with OIS; 8MP f/2.4 telephoto camera (3X optical zoom) with OIS; and 16MP f/2.2 ultra-wide-angle lens (117-degree FOV).

OnePlus says the new main sensor is 29 percent larger than the one on the OnePlus 6T and also comes with pixel binning technology. Pixel size has also increased by 70 percent.

The new camera setup offers three modes of focus and depending on the detected scenario, will pick between PDAF, CAF and Laser AF.

Make no mistake, the OnePlus 7 Pro will set the benchmark for 2019 flagships, in terms of performance. The no-holds-barred approach starts with the top-of-the-line 7nm Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor. The new chip is 45 percent faster yet consumes 20 percent less power than its predecessor.

The scorching chipset is coupled with the Adreno 640 GPU which delivers 20 percent better performance and 30 percent better power efficiency.

The phone comes in various configurations, starting from 6GB LPDDR4X RAM up to a whopping 12GB.

It also uses the latest and fastest storage technology for mobile devices – UFS 3.0, which offers 79 percent faster performance compared to USF 2.1 technology.

To ensure the device keeps performance-robbing heat at bay, OnePlus has built in a 10-layer cooling system.

Keeping the device juiced is a 4,000mAh battery, the biggest yet on a OnePlus device. It supports Warp Charge, OnePlus’ rapid charge technology. All you need is 20 minutes of charge time to get from zero to 50 percent.

It’s a long time coming, and it’s finally happening. The OnePlus 7 Pro gets stereo speakers enhanced with Dolby Atmos.

On the software side of things, the OnePlus 7 Pro runs the latest Oxygen OS 9.5, based on Android 9 Pie. The phone is guaranteed to receive two years of major software updates and three years of security patches. It will also be in line to get Android Q beta.

The new OS release offers built-in screen recording with native sound recording and 90Hz app support, as well as navigation gestures and a new Gaming mode. The gaming mode, developed in partnership with Fnatic offers advanced DND (do no disturb), background restriction and network enhancement, aside from optimising RAM, CPU and GPU for gaming.

OnePlus 7 Pro Black
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OnePlus 7 Pro Blue
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Aesthetics-wise, the OnePlus 7 Pro is sleek but familiar, and is offered in Mirror Gray (6GB RAM and 12GB RAM models), Nebula Blue (8GB RAM + 12GB RAM models) and Almond (8GB model only).

For the UK market, there will be a OnePlus 7 Pro 5G edition that’s exclusive to EE. The phone will feature the Qualcomm Snapdragon X50 modem.

OnePlus 7
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OnePlus 7

For a more affordable option, there’s the standard OnePlus 7. The device packs 6GB or 8GB RAM, coupled with UFS 3.0 storage of either 128GB or 256GB capacity.

It features a smaller display (with a dew drop notch)—a 6.41-inch Optic AMOLED that pushes Full HD+ resolution. Like its Pro sibling, it features an in-display fingerprint sensor.

The other similarity with its sibling is the Snapdragon 855 chipset mated to the Adreno 640 GPU.

Optics-wise, it gets one less camera—48MP IMX586 main sensor with OIS, coupled with an f/1.7 aperture lens. It lacks a telephoto lens too, and instead sports a 5MP f/2.4 shooter for depth effects.

In terms of audio, the OnePlus 7 also gets stereo speakers enhanced with Dolby Atmos.

It packs a smaller 3,700mAh battery that charges up via USB-C. It supports previous generation 20W Dash Charge technology.

OnePlus continues to ignore wireless charging, IP dust- and water-resistance and the 3.5mm headphone jack on its devices.

Pricing and availability

The OnePlus 7 Pro will go on sale in India on 17 May, while the regular OnePlus 7 will be available in June.

Pricing in India is as follows:

OnePlus 7 Pro

  • 6GB RAM + 128GB storage – INR48,999 (~MYR2907)
  • 8GB RAM + 256GB storage – INR52,999 (~MYR3,145)
  • 12GB RAM + 256GB storage – INR57,999 (~MYR3,442)

OnePlus 7

  • 6GB RAM + 128GB storage – INR32,999 (~MYR1,958)
  • 8GB RAM + 256GB storage – INR37,999 (~MYR2,255)

In the UK, the OnePlus 7 series is priced as follows:

OnePlus 7 Pro

  • 6GB RAM + 128GB storage – GBP649 (~MYR3,497)
  • 8GB RAM + 256GB storage – GBP699 (~MYR3,767)
  • 12GB RAM + 256GB storage – GBP799 (~MYR4,306)

OnePlus 7

  • 6GB RAM + 128GB storage – GBP499 (~MYR2,689)
  • 8GB RAM + 256GB storage – GBP549 (~MYR2,958)

Malaysians won’t have too long to wait as the new OnePlus 7 series is slated to debut on 21 May 2019.

For more information, visit the official OnePlus 7 webpage.

By Vernon

Vernon is the founder and chief editor of A graphic designer by profession, he has a deep love for technology, cars, gadgets, food, and travel. He tweets too much and is also known as a caffeine bacterium ("life's too short for bad coffee"). Bleeds Blue (go Chelsea FC!) and considers BMW, Porsche, Alfa Romeo cars to have in the garage--for true petrolheads, that is.