The saying goes that second parts were never good, but OnePlus has challenged it for another year by repeating the update play at six months. In May we knew the OnePlus 6 and in October its version “T”, of which now we can tell you something more after a month of use with the OnePlus 6T .
In the initial analysis of the OnePlus 6T, we highlighted two points for which we considered an update to be worthwhile: the software and the battery . Something that we have been able to prove more thoroughly after a few weeks with him and that we value again, along with the rest of the features.
A genetics that is worth keeping
Something that we almost always like about OnePlus is that it achieves a balance between trends and its own style that makes its smartphones distinctive. Holding the OnePlus 6T is very different from grabbing a large majority of phones with similar diagonal screens for the finishes (and it is grateful to open a parenthesis between so many reflective rear, especially when trying to photograph it).
The feeling we had with the OnePlus 6 is repeated in that it does not seem that the back is glass. In fact, as we said in the initial analysis, the Chinese add a treatment that leaves a matte finish almost more typical of a polished aluminum or a very hard plastic, and this in the end is tranquility when it is stored or supported on a surface .
In this way, the design is minimalist and sober , away from striking effects at least in the black model. The only thing that invades the predominant matte of the back beyond the shy bulge of the cameras is the logo and the signature of the manufacturer, but retaining that discretion.
It is true that the one who likes more or less will always depend on that, on personal preferences, and it may be that the abrupt rupture of the continuity that the frontal supposes is not to everyone’s liking either (the bevel is considerable and to the touch it costs Get used). But at least it distills quality , a feeling that remains after a few weeks.
The design and dimensions also favor that, even with its 6.41-inch screen and its resulting dimensions, do not tire us in hand. The curve softens a lot especially to hold it with one hand, and although it is not light we do not end up getting tired after a while with it.
Another question that depends on tastes, but at least we have an option in the hands of OxygenOS. In our case we have been with him for some time and without him, seeing above all what was more aesthetic in the long run, and both elections have their pros and cons:
The notch per se, at the software level, does not have any functionality : it does not matter which side we click on, the notification curtain will always be displayed.
The height of the notch is greater than that of the notification bar : although it is true that we can not speak of bar as such when the notch is there , since there is no shading that delimits it beyond the height of the elements, always gives the impression that these are “sunken” in the frame, and that the camera is to the frame what a jetty to two beaches.
For this reason, if we hide the notch is a thicker edge than the bottom, so there is no vertical symmetry .
The notch is really small : it just steals space for notifications and other elements.
In some apps necessarily full screen and horizontal (such as Asphalt 8) is a white border filling the space that would occupy the black frame to hide the notch by software, and is not too elegant solution.
With all this it is already a matter of preferences with what we stay. In our case we have maintained the notch after the trial periods, but as we have emphasized the contribution is purely aesthetic and not functional.
And spinning with this, we can talk more about the experience with the screen . An AMOLED panel with sufficient resolution at a detailed level, although due to the evolution of the industry, it would be possible to standardize the FullHD + in the upper midrange and move to higher resolutions in the high range (since energy expenditure management is also improving) .
The panel comes rather cold from the factory, but we have the shielding of OxygenOS customization options that also covers the screen temperature and saturation of the colors (at the same time, not separately), and something we can do. In our case we have fitted more personalized calibration (the adaptive does not work badly, but leaves the temperature somewhat low for our taste), since the colors were not as saturated as in the basic and we could leave it somewhat warmer than with the adaptive .
There are two aspects to improve in the face of a future smartphone of the brand in relation to the experience with the screen (after the McLaren edition, because in principle there are no changes at the panel level): that does not suffer so much from the rainbow reflections AMOLED (hardware, and not very good memories come from that first OnePlus One ) and that the automatic brightness adjustment works well (probably software).
At the first we can be more or less sensitive, and matter to a greater or lesser extent, but the second becomes really annoying because it tends to be too low in interiors and medium-low light environments and reacts late and poorly to changes in situation .
Removing these two caveats, the experience with the screen is good at the level of visualization, as well as tactile sensitivity and viewing angles. The maximum brightness is more than enough when it gives the light directly and the experience is very good when it comes to viewing streaming content or playing.
OxygenOS is a software that was characterized from the beginning by seeking customization without ballasts . For giving an Android experience with aspirations of its own operating system that in the end were in the personalization layer, but nourishing the Google operating system at the level of options and functions.
This has positive points, but also certain missed opportunities (although in reality there is always time to expand). It is good to be able to choose the typography of the system, whether frame or notch or different audio profiles according to our tastes and headphones, but there are no options to make the unlocking of the terminal more comfortable .
Without raising to activate (what we can activate is only the screen environment) is not possible to unlock by almost instant facial recognition that we have in Apple from the iPhone X and other phones, having to activate the screen with the physical button on / blocking or with a double touch to the screen (which is appreciated).
Something that would do well not to go thin reading the prints on the screen, costing something more than with the Huawei Mate 20 Pro (which was not too pleasant an experience), in terms of the fact that it is very demanding at the surface level of yolk and we have to support it well (nothing in a little way).
Saving this, facial recognition is fast , even in low light conditions. Although in this respect what happens is that the screen is illuminated yes or yes to have to activate, and is an auxiliary light at the end of the day (it is not something due to the technology used per se, as in facial recognition systems advanced ).
For the rest, the software does not seem to add much load to the processor and RAM, although it is true that we have a combination that is difficult to find the tickle at the level of performance. After a few weeks with him the fluency has reigned in our use, throwing hours to games, multimedia, heavy apps and everything we could. In summary, the Snapdragon 845 + 8 GB of RAM + OxygenOS combo is satisfactory and an antonym of lag .
OxygenOS only adds a couple of own apps (in addition to some utility and those of Google) that can be uninstalled, nothing from third parties. Those of Google can be disabled.
Before going on to talk about the photographic experience during this month (and above all, show it to you), we are going to give a positive mini-point and a negative one to two aspects that involve software additions and final performance: audio and navigation .
On the one hand we have a more than acceptable performance of the audio ,well compensated at the dynamic range level and being very clear. After a few weeks of use it is not as convincing in terms of the sound output from the loudspeaker as it is from the headphones, and OxygenOS also incorporates some adjustments dedicated to the personalization of the audio, although it will depend a lot on our taste to fit the configuration that comes default for OnePlus headphones or other brands (for OnePlus Bullets Wireless gives more power to bass, higher dynamic range and a little more sharpness).
On the other hand we have navigation through the system , which can be done through the traditional button bar or with gestures. The variety of options is something positive and that is appreciated, but its performance leaves to be desired and it takes a long time to get used to the sensitivity and the difference between the back gesture ( swipe to the right) and the minimization ( swipe to the center, but very to the center).
The combination of cameras does not change with respect to the OnePlus 6, and as we saw in its initial analysis the experience was therefore very approximate. What do we think about the OnePlus 6T photograph after a few weeks of use? That the performance is acceptable , but that has certain aspects to polish that still make a lot of difference with other rivals.
To highlight the intuitive and simple of the app , which gives all the necessary options to take advantage of the cameras in an intuitive and easy way, for example by placing a quick access to the HDR in automatic mode or to change the resolution in the video. The fact that not all modes have their eyelash and that some are in the curtain that appears when sliding in the other direction makes it something more practical than sliding to the end to find certain modes, so it is easy to get used to the interface without investing much time.
This helps to take advantage of a lot of cameras that do not finish at least clearly above the rest, by obtaining photographs with a lot of room for improvement in detail and exposure . HDR helps save skies and backlights that would otherwise burn out.
The optical zoom is defended well, but neither stands out decisively above others such as Huawei Mate 20 Pro or iPhone XS , although certain is that is on the line of smartphones competition as we saw in the last photographic comparative .
In general the colors are realistic, the level of adequate contrast and what we miss is a certain level of sharpness, that the exposure is more balanced and that the white balance in automatic is more stable and reliable. In these last cases and at night our friend is the pro mode (manual), which gives us the opportunity to adjust to our liking and desire the ISO, the focus, the exposure time and other parameters.
In night scenes with abundant light it is worth adjusting with the pro mode to lower the ISO at least, so that the amount of noise is reduced to a certain degree.
If there is something less light, but it is not a demanding situation in excess, we can try the automatic (and even with HDR).
The portrait mode portrait mode is versatile and acts even at night, but we see a lot of developments with respect to what we saw last year with the OnePlus 5T. That is to say, there is still a lot of work to save contours and work the blur so that there is a more natural result close to what we see in competing smartphones, either playing the ” flat bokeh ” of the Pixel 3 XL or the more gradual as the of the iPhone.
The front camera has a good day performance in open spaces. In interiors the result is impoverished more than expected, tending to excess contrast and the decompensation of illuminations and shadows, but it is an acceptable result in general. Good experience with the portrait mode, which although it does not have a perfect cut is quite all terrain and usually applies to all scenes.
From OnePlus to OnePlus (and shot because McLaren) there has been a progressive increase in weight and volume, but only on this last occasion has it been accompanied by a larger pile. The OnePlus 6T is 3,700 mAh , and not the 3,300 we had seen in the previous three.
The numbers are not everything, we never tire of saying it, but in this case they are linked to a very good experience at the level of autonomy. The averages of more than 24 hours obtained in the first analysis have been maintained after a few weeks, proving that if we go to a somewhat less active use (but maintaining photo sessions and some hours of more intense use) the autonomy can reach 48 hours .
They help the tools of control of consumption in background that incorporates OxygenOS or the option of intelligent battery, which will notify us that it has limited the consumption of some app that the system detects that we do not use frequently (and continues consuming). Also the quick charge is appreciated, obtaining a loading time of 1 hour and 20 minutes with the original charger (of course, with its red cable).
In the absence of checking if the 10 GB of RAM in a mobile with the Snapdragon 845 are a very different experience, what we can say that the OnePlus 6T is another mobile that shows us that the current hardware, with 8 GB, should be more enough for any user whatever their use. The key: that the software you saw is a tool to move and not an added burden , and that is demonstrating OxygenOS in its successive versions.
After a few weeks with him we keep the good feelings and it has turned out to be a satisfactory experience , especially at the level of autonomy. Greater battery and greater screen without changing the sensations to the grip, and incorporating a fingerprint reader on the screen to which it is easy to get used to, although there is room for improvement in it and above all also in how the activation of facial recognition is applied.
What we also maintain: it is a good mobile quality-price , we think it is one of the best of the year in this regard , but still the camera has a lot of room for improvement. Especially in matters that seem rather related to the process, although the experience at the level of options is very good and we miss almost nothing.