OnePlus 8 Series Launch

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OnePlus 8 Series had more leaks than a fat suit convention at a cactus farm. So with no surprises, let’s get straight to it.

  • Dimensions 165.3 x 74.35 x 85 199g
  • Dual SIM – 5G and WiFi 6 capable
  • OxygenOS over Android 10.5
    Dark Mode/Dynamic Wallpapers/Closer Google integration/Native Alexa support as well as Google Assistant
  • Battery 4,510mAh with Warp Charge 30T: 50% in 22 minutes
  • Wireless and Reverse Wireless Charging
  • 6.78-inch QHD+ Fluid Display with HDR10+ support / 120Hz Refresh Rate
  • Dolby Atmos Dual Speakers
  • Up to 12GB LPDDR5 RAM + 128GB/256GB OBS
  • OnePlus 8 Pro Price starting at £799

OnePlus 8 Series – First Impressions

The new OnePlus 8 Pro flagship ditches the gimmicky pop-up camera in a bid to take its audience seriously. With that sacrifice made, it achieves an official IP68 rating for dust and water resistance. A first for OnePlus and it’s about time.

OnePlus 8 Series

But with no pop-up selfie camera, OnePlus has resorted to a punch-hole option. It makes the device a little slimmer and lighter. For a cut-out front-facing camera it’s tiny, and doesn’t distract much from its beautiful 6.78-inch QHD+ Fluid Display (513ppi, 19.8:9 ratio). It’s the brightest and most colour-rich panel deployed by OnePlus and may end up a contender for phone display of the year. I used it in direct sunlight and had no issues enjoying content or reading messages. It’s truly a thing of beauty. Size isn’t the only reason why I like it though.

The display of the OnePlus 8 Pro has been rated highly by DisplayMate, who gave it an A+ rating – the highest rating available. The display supports 10-bit colour depth, making HDR images and videos richer with HDR10+ support. It also has a variable refresh rate of up to 120Hz. In use – it makes operating the devices super slick. It has a 240Hz touch sampling rate and it is the most responsive mobile device I’ve used to date.

OnePlus has also included a custom MEMC chip that anticipates the motion between frames. This makes content that’s not native to 120Hz as smooth as possible and the difference is subtle but noticeable.

OnePlus 8 Pro – Camera

OnePlus 8 Pro
OnePlus 8 Pro – Balances Colour, Contrast and Detail better than both the OP8 and OP7 Pro

OnePlus 7 Pro – Still does a good job with details, but appears flat in comparison to both OP8 Series devices

OnePlus has equipped the new OnePlus 8 Pro with a custom Sony IMX689 camera. At 48-megapixel resolution, the sensor from this main camera offers improved performance over the OnePlus 7 Pro and will put it up there with the best available this year. It also has three (2.5) other cameras, including a 48MP ultra-wide Sony IMX 586 camera (from the OP7T), an 8MP 3x telephoto camera and an odd “Colour Filter Camera”. The Colour Filter camera just looks like an IR camera with a fancier name. It may have some creative uses, but I’m yet to be convinced.

Here’s an example of the new Colour Filter camera in action. What do you make of it?

Same shot without the new Colour Filter camera

Both of the new OnePlus devices have hybrid EIS+OIS for their main cameras. Performance isn’t even though. The OnePlus 8’s stabilisation performance is slightly edged by last year’s OnePlus 7 Pro. But the OnePlus 8 Pro shines in all departments. They can both record up to 4K/60p and 1080/240p.

OnePlus 8 Pro – Battery

I would argue that battery life is the most important feature for me as a heavy smartphone user. The OnePlus 8 Pro has a hefty 4,510mAh battery, which is so very necessary given the screen quality. New Warp Charge 30T gives you 50% charge in as little as 22 minutes so provided you’ve got your OnePlus Warp Charger to hand, you’ll be hard pushed to get caught short with the OnePlus 8 Pro.

It gave me a solid 18-hours of use before it needed charging. And it has a clever “bedtime” feature that helps to avoid wearing the battery down by continuously being left on charge overnight. Instead, it learns when you sleep and when you wake and will only deliver charge to the device before you’re due to wake up. That way it’s ready to go when you’re up, and the lifetime performance of the battery should prove more durable (in theory). This feature will be great for people whose lives run like clockwork. Unfortunately, it’s not one for me, but I rate the ingenuity.

Other new things that have been overdue – Wireless charging and reverse wireless charging. With new Warp Charge Wireless 30, the OnePlus 8 Pro can go from 1-50% in 30 minutes while resting on the fancy new OnePlus Warp Charge 30 Wireless Charger. Sold separately. And with reverse wireless charging you can use the OnePlus 8 Pro to charge another device or accessories, including the new OnePlus Bullets Wireless Z (£49).

OnePlus 8 Pro – Design

OnePlus 8 Series Colours

It’s eye catching in Glacial Green and minimalistic in its design. Best described as clean with beautifully finished 3D Corning Gorilla Glass, for a frosted glass effect. It’s resistant to fingerprints and hopefully gravity. The UK is only getting Glacial Green and Onyx Black at launch and if you want the 12GB RAM + 256GB storage option, you’ve got no choice. Glacial Green is you. Other territories are being treated to a deep Ultramarine Colour option. Also outside of the UK, the smaller OnePlus 8 (180g, 8mm thick) comes in a cheeky “Interstellar Glow” version. Looks “Samsungy”, but may prove popular.

OnePlus 8 Pro – Performance

I’ve touched on it above, but the OnePlus 8 Pro is nippy, helped by a combination of improvements. One of the most notable advantages is that it has LPDDR5 RAM in both of its 8GB and 12GB configs. Giving it the edge over the OnePlus 8 – only LPDDR4. Having the more advanced RAM, the OnePlus 8 Pro offers a better balance of performance power and energy efficiency. Again, it’s a subtle difference, but it’s definitely discernible. Thanks in part to the addition of the Adreno 650 GPU, games and videos look and run as good on the OnePlus 8 Pro as I’ve ever seen them look or perform on any mainstream flagship smartphone.

Both OnePlus 8 series devices have under screen optical fingerprint scanners and face unlocking. Both security unlock features are consistent and quick (thanks to no pop-up camera).

Aside from a couple of minor lags I experienced when using Instagram – may well be an IG thing – last year’s OnePlus 7 Pro feels genuinely sluggish in comparison. The OnePlus 8 Pro was built for speed and both the OnePlus 8 Series devices use the X55 5G chipset meaning they are 5G and WiFi 6 compatible out of the gate. Although you can only use one sim tray at a time for 5G connectivity.

OnePlus 8 Pro – Early Verdict

It’s the best and boldest smartphone release for OnePlus, possibly since the first ever device. This time they’ve done away with the poor excuses for leaving out generally accepted (and expected) tech. It seems like they’ve spotted a huge Huawei-shaped gap in the market and they’re throwing everything they’ve got into filling it.

Keeping its top spec option under £1000 is a smart piece of business, but I think they should have been even more aggressive and topped out at £899. Either way sub-1000 could do well for them as it’s one of the last Chinese brands able to put out a flagship Android device with full Google App support.

Is it worth an upgrade if you have the OnePlus 7T or OnePlus 7 Pro? For overall performance yes, it’s a decent total package that delivers notable improvements across the board. But if you’re currently happy with the performance of your device and just wanted a better camera, the new setup doesn’t offer too much of an upgrade to be honest. And you may be better off with the more affordable OnePlus 8 if you really just want something new. OnePlus 8 still has a 48MP main camera and generally handles itself well in most conditions. It also features an improved design and has an almost as attractive screen. Although it’s only a 6.55-inch 1080×2400 resolution (402 ppi) Fluid Display.

OnePlus 8

OnePlus 8 Pro makes a solid impression and delivers consistently, but if you’re on a tighter budget, the OnePlus 8 still offers a good package if wireless charging and peak performance aren’t must-haves for you.

We will be updating you guys with a proper review once we’ve had more time with the devices. Subscribe to Gadgetsboy on YouTube to make sure you don’t miss out on any new content and head over to the @Gadgetsboy Twitter for updates and more images.

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