OnePlus 3 and OnePlus 3T are now in Open Beta OS with Boot Animation

The time for open beta OS for the OnePlus 3 and OnePlus 3Thas come and with an ugly boot animation, unfortunately.

The official changelog showed that developers worked on adding some ‘soft’ screen calibration, worked on optimizing the clearing of some recent apps, had some minor bug fixes, updated the Community app to the newest version (1.9.5) and last but not least there’s a new boot animation.

To change screen calibration to ‘soft’ you’ll have to look for the setting in the ‘display > screen’ section

The Boot Animation is Mainly Perceived as Ugly, Hideous, Awful

Why ugly? It’s ugly because it could have been better. They just added an animation with a hand continuously writing in different fonts the slogan ‘Never Settle’. There’s nothing very wrong with it but so see this long animation while re-booting is quite annoying.

A lot of users commented on forums that this animation looks bad, it’s an embarrassing booting screen, the animation is awful, hideous, a 1st April joke and so on.

You can see the new animation in open beta builds 15 and 24 for both OnePlus 3 and OnePlus 3T.

Aside from the ugly animation users hope that the new animation is temporary and will not be here to stay with us too much.

Developers have written in their changelog on the official forum that they are happy to receive any bugs that users have encountered. All they have to is go to the feedback section on the OnePlus forums and report the bugs.

Meanwhile, all redditers and users on OnePlus forums hope for a different boot animation that will feature a cleaner and minimal animation.

Criticism is constructive and OnePlus fans hope that the design team will change their minds on this boot animation that won’t do justice to what the OnePlus smartphones have to offer, like a great AMOLED screen.

OnePlus 3T Receives Leaked Build of HydrogenOS Based on Android 8.0 Oreo

We’ve seen a number of OEMs such as OnePlus, Nokia, Sony, and others say they’re currently working on the Android 8.0 update, so it’s somewhat of a race to see which one is able to push out an OTA first. It was recently leaked that OnePlus has started a closed beta test of Android Oreo for the OnePlus 3/3T with an alleged goal of rolling out an open beta by the end of this month. But today, OnePlus 3T users who want to get their hands on Android Oreo can do so through a leaked internal build of HydrogenOS that has been shared on our forums.

OnePlus manages two different versions of their software depending on your location. The company installs OxygenOS on most of their devices, but if your phone originated in China (or maybe you just manually flashed it yourself) then it will have HydrogenOS installed on it. For the most part, these two look and function mostly the same but there are some subtle differences (such as no Google apps and some pre-installed Chinese apps on HydrogenOS).

Apparently, a leaked version of a closed beta test for HydrogenOS based on Android 8.0 Oreo has been posted online and can try it out right now. XDA Junior Member  has uploaded a version to our OnePlus 3T forum and this was mirrored by XDA Member standbyme91 so there are multiple sources you can download it from.

Remember though, this is the Chinese version of the ROM so while you can set the language to English, it will not be the same OxygenOS that you are used to. Plus, there are no Google apps pre-installed. However, you can install the Google Play Store from the pre-installed Market App.

Reports say that installing this will lock the bootloader. Nearly all hardware aspects of the device are reported to work, and some users have even tested and confirmed that VoLTE works. A user also confirmed that Project Treble is not on board with this release, but we shouldn’t assume that this will always be the case since we’re still some time away from an official release. On the other hand, users are reporting that rootless Substratum theme support works on this build, which is great news for fans of custom themes!

If you want to try it out, be sure to read the thread in full before flashing because it requires you to use the MsmDownloadTool so it isn’t a conventional installation. Again, do not flash this if you are not comfortable messing with your phone.


Download HydrogenOS based on Android Oreo for the OnePlus 3T

OxygenOS Open Beta 24/15 Released For the OnePlus 3 and OnePlus 3T

OnePlus has announced the release of OxygenOS Open Beta 24 and Open Beta 15 for the OnePlus 3 and OnePlus 3T, respectively. Unlike the last update, which was loaded with a plethora of new features and UX improvements, this has a comparatively smaller changelog.

Speaking of the changes, the new update brings in “Soft” screen calibration mode, new boot animations, optimization to recent apps clearing, an update to Community app, and some bug fixing.

More importantly, though, the changelog for the update states that the recently discovered BlueBorne vulnerability has also been patched in this update. In case you are not aware, earlier this week, IoT security firm Armis Labs discovered a major Bluetooth vulnerability which could enable an attacker to gain unauthorized access to unpatched Android, iOS, Windows, and Linux devices. BlueBorne is pretty dangerous in a sense that the attacker doesn’t even need to pair to the target device nor it requires any user interaction in order to gain the full control of the target device.

OnePlus notes that they have to fixed this vulnerability with their own patch independent of the Android security update, and that some BlueBorne vulnerability scanners may fail to recognize their independent patch.

As always, if you’re already running the latest version of Open Beta, you can look forward to receiving this new update via OTA. If you aren’t, you can head over to the OnePlus download page for more details on how to manually flash the beta ROM on your device.

Here is the complete changelog for OxygenOS Open Beta 24/15:

System:

  • Added “Soft” screen calibration
    We’ve reverted the screen calibration and added the new calibration from last build as “soft.” You can enable the new calibration in the “display> screen” calibration section of settings
  • New boot animation
  • Optimized the clearing of recent apps

Other:

  • Updated Community app to V1.9.5
  • Minor bug fixes

Source: OnePlus

Speed, Thermal & Performance Comparison of Fast Charging Standards

OnePlus DashCharge Takes the Crown

One of the most common qualms from smartphone users is how their phones never last through the whole day. Despite all the advances in smartphones in recent years, such as quick charging solutions like Quick Charge, Dash Charge and SuperCharge, batteries feel like they have not evolved quick enough to keep up with our needs.

Part of the blame goes onto OEMs, who do work towards making our smartphones more efficient year-on-year. But on the flip side, the increasing efficiency of our smartphones are seen as perfect excuses to thin down our phones by yet another millimeter. And to retain the practicality of the phone, advances in the field of charging are advertised as a key feature of the device. So what if your phone dies after 6 hours of standby? Now you can get a day’s power in half an hour, or some other slogan.

Choice, one of Android’s strongest selling points, also ends up confusing users when it comes to charging standards. There are multiple charging solutions available across Android flagships, with their own positive and negatives attributes, intricacies and particularities. Some charging solutions are quick, some are efficient and some aren’t really quite as great as one would expect.

In this article, we will take a look at the performance and efficiency of some popular charging standards, namely Huawei’s SuperCharge, USB Power Delivery, OnePlus’s Dash Charge, Samsung’s Adaptive Fast Charging, and Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 3.0.

Index

Conclusion
OnePlus Dash ChargeHuawei SuperchargeQuick Charge 3.0Adaptive Fast ChargingUSB Power Delivery


Current Winner 9/16/2017

Offering an excellent balance between speed and stability, Dash Charge surprised us with its ability to charge your phone quickly and painlessly. Its custom charging adapter and signature red cable allow newer OnePlus devices to remain cool while charging, without sacrificing performance on device nor charging rates. This means you use your device while it’s getting topped up and keep on messaging, browsing the web or even playing a game. Dash Charge cannot offer wide compatibility or a diverse set of charger options, but in the end it provides an excellent charging solution that does not get in the way of the user experience.


Methodology

The data we collected involved the use of a script that automatically measured key charging parameters  (as reported by Android) and dumped them into a data file for us to analyze. All charging standards were tested with their stock charging adapter and cable to ensure that the data is representative of what we can expect from each standard. All data collection began with the battery at 5% and ended with the battery at 95%. To test thermal performance and charging speeds during screen-on use cases, the script looped PCMark tests while the phone was charging to simulate a real-world usage environment; temperature readings are gathered from the OS, and they are not measured externally. For the sake of clarity in this presentation, averaged data was rounded off while preparing the graphs.


Quickest Charging Standard

When we measured the charging times of the popular charging solutions, we came across a peculiar conclusion: USB Power Delivery was the slowest of all fast charging solutions that we tested, at least as implemented on the Pixel XL. This is only surprising because USB Power Delivery is the “standard” pushed forth by the USB-IF standards body, and the one that Google strongly encourages as well — once we look at each standard’s workings further down this article, it’ll make more sense.

USB Power Delivery has been implemented in the Google Pixel and Google Pixel XL. The smaller Google Pixel is marketed at being capable of 15W-18W charging, while the bigger Google Pixel XL is capable of 18W charging. As we noted in our Google Pixel XL review, actual charge times on the device were not competitive, ending up in the last place when compared with other solutions, and our extensive testing on the charging times for the purposes of comparison reveals the same. Below you can see the charging time of each standard from 5% to 80% when scaling the battery capacity across test devices to 3,000mAh — this does not represent how each standard would charge such battery capacity with perfect accuracy, and the graph should be used to get an approximate idea as to how they compare.

When we look at which device charged the fastest, the quickest charging solution we tested is OnePlus’s Dash Charge functionality, which on the OnePlus 3 ends up being quicker than competitors by about 10 minutes in the end (before adjusting for battery capacity), and by a good half hour against USB Power Delivery. On the flip side, Dash Charging is proprietary technology, which adds its own set of complications which we will discuss later on in this article. Dash Charge does end up behind Huawei Supercharge when we take into account, and adjust for, battery capacity in the device, as the Huawei Mate 9 has a substantially larger battery than the OnePlus 3. While Supercharge achieves a faster peak charging rate, the Huawei Mate 9 does not reach 95% charge the earliest because of its larger battery capacity. So while the OnePlus 3 tops up faster in terms of reaching the higher percentages of its battery capacity, the Mate 9 is actually adding more charge per unit of time (a function of Huawei’s higher power delivery ouput).

Huawei Supercharge and Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 performed similarly, while Samsung’s Adaptive Fast Charge had less of an initial speed advantage but it still managed to reach the goal of 95% charge while giving close competition to the other two.

We also have temperature data alongside the charging time. This graph coincides with the charge percentage, but had to be separated to keep things simpler, uncluttered and easy to understand.

We were unable to finely control all the starting temperatures of our test devices because of the varying temperatures in the different locations they were tested in, so our focus should be on consistency and stability rather than the absolute highs and lows displayed by each data set. Battery temperature was obtained from Android’s low-level system record of battery temperature.

The most thermally consistent of the lot is Samsung’s Adaptive Fast Charging as it maintains a good hold over the device temperature throughout the entire session. Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 3.0 was the “coolest”, though again, we would need better-controlled initial conditions with perfect starting points and minimal extraneous variables to crown it the king. Similarly, we cannot call USB Power Delivery the “hottest”, but it definitely displays the widest range of temperatures. It’s also worth noting that most of these devices end up cooling down once their charging rate begins slowing down, and USB-PD does a good job at managing temperature past its peak.

The situation changes when you look at how these technologies perform when the device is subjected to a real-world workload. As stated before, we looped PCMark’s Work 2.0 test to simulate real-world usage while charging these devices, in order to measure how charging times and temperatures differed.

OnePlus’s Dash Charging remains as the top performer primarily because of its implementation, which we’ll detail further down. The voltage and current regulating circuitry is situated in the Dash Charger, which leads to lower temperatures while charging. So Dash Charge’s idle-charging and under-load charging scores tend to show very little variation.

On the other hand, Samsung’s Adaptive Fast Charging shows the worst performance when subjected to charging under a real-world workload. The device takes about twice the time to charge if it is being used, and the charging also increases in a peculiarly linear fashion (given voltage and current remain constant) that is not seen across any of our other tests. In fact, according to Samsung’s support page for the S6, its Adaptive Fast Charging solution is entirely disabled when the screen is on. Express mentions like these could not be found on newer support pages, but Samsung continues to recommend devices to be switched off while using Fast Charging.

Other standards continue to occupy positions between these extremes, most lying on the better side of the scale. Even USB Power Delivery, the worst performer of idle-charging takes just about 10 minutes more to achieve the same charge levels under load.

Temperature-wise, Samsung’s Adaptive Fast Charging (if we can call it that under this test) maintains a consistent range of temperatures, flowing within a 5°C range. Huawei’s Supercharge follows along next, followed by OnePlus’s Dash Charge. Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 3.0 and USB Power Delivery are the worst performer temperature-wise with large inconsistencies and variations throughout their cycles.


With inter-standard comparison out of the way, let’s take a closer look at how the standards performed individually under idle-charging and load-charging scenarios, with a short explanation as to why they behave this way and how they work.


Huawei Supercharge

Huawei’s SuperCharge is one of the more interesting standards we’ve tested, showing impressive results under most conditions. Unlike traditional high-voltage charging solutions, Supercharge employs a relatively low-voltage and high-current formula that aims to maximize the amount of current going into the device, while minimizing efficiency losses, heat, and throttling. Coupled with the Smart Charge protocol, the Mate 9 also adapts its charging parameters based on the requirements of the battery, as well as the charger supplied (for example, it can make full use of a USB-PD charger). The actual Supercharge charger comes with 5V 2A, 4.5V 5A, or 5V 4.5A (for up to 25W, or a common 22.5 throughout the most relevant segment) and uses a chipset in-charger to regulate voltage as well — this means that there is no additional in-phone voltage transformation, in turn reducing temperature and efficiency losses. Coupled with what Huawei calls “8- layer thermal mechanics” in its design, the Mate 9 promised fast charging speeds at low temperature. Focusing on current over voltage, and going for a less-lopsided distribution is similar to the Dash Charge standard’s approach, and in many ways both OnePlus (or Oppo’s) solution is similar to Huawei’s Super Charge.

Looking at the data we’ve gathered, we see the typical pattern of temperature beginning to go down past the 55% mark, the point at which current begins dropping off as well. Peak current comes close to the 5A rating of the charger, and sustains the 4.5 nominal current throughout the first 20 minutes, or until around 45%. The fastest charging rate occurs from 10% to 5%, with a linear slope that begins curving at that current drop-off, where voltage starts remaining somewhat constant after a fast climb from 2V to over 3.5V. Throughout this test, peak temperature hits 38° Celsius, which is significantly hotter than most other standards in this list. However, temperature will become really important when we take a look at our “under load” test, where we simulate activity on the device to compare charging speeds. We can clearly see temperature decreasing alongside the current, which doesn’t drop in clearly-defined steps as other standards in this article, but with a set downwards trajectory

In terms of charging speed, Huawei SuperCharge arrives to 90% in about 60 minutes, putting it second in in terms of speed behind OnePlus’ Dash Charge. However, the Huawei Mate 9 we tested also has a 4,000mAh battery, which means the mAh per percentage are higher than on all OnePlus devices, actually putting the standard in a better light and ahead of OnePlus. There are differences, however, in terms of charging speed, as Super Charge begins leveling off harder than Dash Charge at the 30 minute mark. Most of these companies advertise how much battery life one can obtain in half an hour, and Huawei’s claims were surpassed by our testing as the device managed to climb past 60% in that time period.

Under workloads, the rate of charging naturally is lower than during idle charging. Instead of a steep drop off, we see a more relaxed curve that trails off at around 75%. Current and temperature drop off is experienced when the device approaches 60%.


OnePlus Dash Charge

One of the newer champions of fast charging is Dash Charge, which surfaced in 2016 with the OnePlus 3. While the OnePlus 2 had disappointingly long charging via a regular 2A charger, the OnePlus 3 brought what OnePlus called “exclusive technology [that] sets a new benchmark for fast charging solutions”. As with most marketing statements from OEMs, this is only half true. Dash Charging technology is actually licensed from OPPO, which OnePlus is a subsidiary of, and mimics their VOOC charging system — Voltage Open Multi-Step Constant-Current Charging. While Dash Charge is a much better name, VOOC charging can be found on OPPO devices like the R9 and R11, though in this article we are focusing on Dash Charge as implemented on the OnePlus 3 / 3T and OnePlus 5.

So what’s special about Dash Charge? Not unlike Huawei SuperCharge, it produces a larger electrical current of 4A and at 5V for 20W power delivery. Rather than increasing voltage, OnePlus opted for a more even distribution with larger electrical current, meaning more electrical charge delivered per unit of time. This is accomplished via both software and, primarily, through hardware — specifically the charger used, which is non-standard (unlike the plethora of QC chargers, for example) and thus you need a VOOC or Dash Charger to make use of these charging speeds.

Much like Huawei’s solution, OnePlus employs dedicated circuitry in the charger itself, and both VOOC and Dash Charge deliver higher amperage thanks to many components of the charger, including a microcontroller that monitors charge level; voltage and current regulating circuitry; heat management and dissipation components (that contribute to a 5-point safety check); and a thicker cable that delivers greater current, specializing in minimizing power fluctuations. Because the charger converts the high voltage from your wall into the lower voltage the battery requires, most of the heat from this conversion never leaves the charger — in turn, your phone remains cooler. The consistent current going into the phone coupled with the lower temperatures on the actual handset allow for reduced thermal throttling, which impacts both charging speed and consistency as well as the direct user experience.

OnePlus proudly proclaims it can give you “a day of power in half an hour”, which in reality means you are looking at around 60% of battery capacity in 30 minutes. This is not only extremely fast, but there are also a few perks that come with it. The charging speed is fastest and one of the fastest at those lower percentages, ensuring you can get extreme amounts of charge in just a few minutes should you be running low on battery. Moreover, the thermal consistency and lack of throttling is no joke. As we can see from the data supplied, the difference between under-load charging and regular charging is minimal. And this does mean that you will not notice slowdowns, additional stutter or general throttling side effects whilst using your device. This is a great plus and, as we’ve noted in a past analysis, it does truly mean you can play demanding 3D games such as Asphalt 8 while still getting nearly the same charging speed, with the difference being explained by the drain incurred by gaming itself.

Dash Charge does have a major disadvantage, and that’s compatibility. The OnePlus 3 and 3T, for example, are not able to fully utilize USB-PD should you not have a Dash Charge cable and charger handy. And you need both the charger and the cable to make Dash Charge work its magic. Unlike with Qualcomm Quick Charge, you won’t find multiple charger offerings and accessories from various suppliers — you are stuck with OnePlus and their stock, which includes regular chargers and also car chargers (that have been known to be out of stock in regular and somewhat frequent intervals). You could try getting your hands on a VOOC charger, but that’s arguably more difficult in many markets. There’s also a noticeable and disappointing lack of battery packs supporting Dash Charge speeds, as OnePlus offers none — you could try OPPO’s power bank with an adapter, but this is far from ideal.

If you can look past those inconveniences and incompatibilities, Dash Charge is a clear winner in both speed and consistency. It’s a charging standard that does its job quickly and efficiently, without tying down the users to a wall for long periods of time, and without hindering their real-world usage while plugged in. The heat reduction could even lead to increased battery longevity. Your phone will remain cool, but your charger will not — so just make sure not to touch it while it’s doing its thing!


Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0

Qualcomm Quick Charge is by all accounts the most popular charging standard in this list, and for good reason. Its paradigm is different than what we see with OnePlus and Huawei, because most of the magic happens through Qualcomm’s power management IC, their SoC and the algorithms they employ — all of this enabled Quick Charge to be a relatively low-cost solution (to OEMs) who are already packing a Snapdragon chipset in their smartphones anyway, and while it might not be as impressive as some of the dedicated solutions in this list, the reach of Qualcomm Quick Charge comes with its own set of benefits. While we are focusing on Quick Charge 3.0, keep in mind Quick Charge 4.0 is already available with considerable improvements. The latest revision is also compatible with USB-PD, as strongly recommended by the Android Compatibility Definition Document.

Quick Charge 3.0 has been offered in chipsets including the Snapdragon 820, 620, 618, 617 and 430, and offers backwards compatibility with previous Quick Charge standard chargers (meaning you can benefit from a plethora of lower-cost, slower chargers). This is mainly because the power draw is handled entirely on-device, with you only needing to provide a charge capable of supplying the requisite current to make use of its advantages — there’s no shortage of Quick Charge-certified chargers, so it shouldn’t be hard to stumble upon one. But again, we should re-emphasize that Quick Charge 3.0 even allows a phone to charge faster or more efficiently than non-Quick Charge devices while using a non-certified charger, precisely because so much of what makes it tick is independent of specific charger hardware, unlike Supercharge and Dash Charge.

Quick Charge 3.0 makes use of ‘Intelligent Negotiation for Optimum Voltage’ (INOV), and as the name suggests this allows for intelligent voltage control in order to determine the most efficient voltage, for the most efficient power delivery, at any given point while charging. This coupled with a higher voltage than competitors does allow the standard to expedite charging time, while preventing overheating and ensuring battery safety. INOV is also a step up from Quick Charge 2.0, which had rather discrete power modes of 5V/2A, 9V/2A, 12V/1.67A and 20V); instead, this revision allows for fine-grained voltage scaling, anything from 3.6V to 20V in 200mV increments. By determining which power level to request at any point in time, QuickCharge also prevents damaging the chemical composition of the battery while still providing an optimum charging speed taking into account factors like temperature and available power output. A potential downside is more inconsistency in charging speeds across charging scenarios and chargers, and the improvements do manifest in the earlier stages of charging and a noticeable decline around the 80% mark.

Still, looking at the graphs provided, one can see the finer granularity and wider range of voltage steps are clearly being taken advantage of. It’s worth noting that the Quick Charge 3.0 samples shown here do not behave as efficiently under load as other alternatives that offload much of the voltage conversion and heat dissipation to outside hardware; it’s more than serviceable if you want to use it while charging, however we don’t see the lack of throttling and heat buildup found on solutions like Dash Charge. And, unlike with other standards, you really won’t have a hard time finding power banks that’ll provide the rated charging speeds — this isn’t the case for SuperCharge or OnePlus, unless you are willing to spend more money, spend more time, or make extra concessions.

It’s precisely this level of versatility and support that make Quick Charge a great standard, and some OEMs do ultimately rebrand it as a superior “customized” alternative. But in the end, Quick Charge is an excellent solution for most OEMs looking to implement fast charging that’s efficient, highly compatible, and does not need special accessories. This holds extreme significance given Qualcomm is essentially granting the option to provide faster charging to dozens of smaller OEMs, or of bringing faster charging to mid-range devices through mid-range chipsets. This, in turn, improves the minimum baseline of fast charging offerings, in turn promoting competition and prompting those brands that do offer fast charging as a specific selling point to aggressively improve or market their solution.


USB Power Delivery

USB as a standard has been evolving for years, from a simple data interface that eventually became widely-used as a constrained power supplier, to a fully-fledged primary power provider alongside a data interface. Many small devices have featured USB charging for years, and you probably have a handful of peripherals being powered up by USB cables right at this moment. Power management in the initial generations of USB, however, was not meant for battery charging — rather, it was cleverly exploited for that by manufacturers who saw the slow power delivery was enough for the small batteries of their products. Since then, we’ve seen a tremendous jump — from the USB 2.0 power source of 5V/500mA (2.5W), to USB 3.0 and 3.1’s 5V/900mAh (which was very, very underutilized on Android) and finally, USB PDs 100W charging maximum.

Of course, smartphones have no need (and cannot take in!) such power draw — while 20V/5A is a peak for USB PD, actual chargers see a much lower specification with our tested Pixel clocking in at up to 15W (5V/3A), and the Pixel XL up to 18W. In most charging circumstances, however, voltage goes up to 5V with current sitting just under 2A, with the highest power draw we found during charging being just under 12.25W. As shown in the data provided here, USB-PD really isn’t the fastest charging standard, nor does it offer the best thermal consistency/lack of throttling. It does charge quite quickly under load, however, and overall it offers a very satisfactory – if unspectacular – charging profile.

It is, however, an extremely versatile standard that’s relatively easy to implement and that’s increasingly being pushed forth by Google in products like the Pixel C, Pixel Chromebooks, and Pixel smartphones as well as by various other manufacturers for laptops and other devices of varying sizes. Moreover, USB-PD is now part of the Android Compatibility Definition Document. Last year, the following entry made the rounds because it showed Google’s commitment to the standard, and what many interpreted as discouragement of proprietary solutions.

Type-C devices are STRONGLY RECOMMENDED to not support proprietary charging methods that modify Vbus voltage beyond default levels, or alter sink/source roles as such may result in interoperability issues with the chargers or devices that support the standard USB Power Delivery methods. While this is called out as “STRONGLY RECOMMENDED”, in future Android versions we might REQUIRE all type-C devices to support full interoperability with standard type-C chargers.

Since then, we’ve seen Qualcomm adopt USB-PD spec compliance with their Quick Charge 4.0 release for newer Snapdragon chipsets, which is a huge victory for both Google and Qualcomm. The increasing proliferation of USB-PD and Type C ports can lead us to a future where we see more device interconnectivity, with a near-universal port for audio, video, data transfer and charging needs. USB Type C devices like the Pixel XL currently allow the option to charge other devices using their battery as a power source, for example, and widespread USB Type C and USB-PD adoption in other devices such as laptops could lead to more convenient charging and cable-management use cases.

There’s also no shortage of charger options available for USB-PD devices, and if the standard can co-exist with proprietary standards, that opens up even more possibilities for device manufacturers. As it stands, though, it’s not present in many Android devices yet, with the Pixel and Pixel XL leading the charge. For these two phones and their adequate battery capacities, the charging rate and resulting times are sufficient, and Pixel / Pixel XL owners have multiple options at their fingertips — one just needs to make sure the charger is able to meet the 9V/2A or 5V/3A requirements of the phone, and that it meets specifications. With the emergence of USB Type C and USB-PD, we did see a few reports of potentially dangerous cables being sold online, as they didn’t meet the specifications of the resistor in the cable, for example. Luckily such issues are disappearing and if you make sure to research your purchase properly, you should be OK. Keep in mind that the standard is scaleable, and there will be more voltage and current configurations that OEMs can experiment with.


Adaptive Fast Charging

Adaptive Fast Charging has been Samsung’s preferred charging solution for many years and, unfortunately, it has largely stayed the same since. While our results show that it’s one of the slowest (yet more stable) standards, Samsung opts for it year after year over either a charging solution more in line with what OnePlus and Huawei are doing, or the proper Qualcomm Quick Charge (however, Samsung devices can make use of Quick Charge chargers for fast chargers!). The latter is a consequence of their split chipset strategy, given that their Exynos chipsets wouldn’t be able to take readily take advantage of Qualcomm’s charging technology. Samsung’s Adaptive Fast Charging is thus present in their devices across the globe, and limited to Samsung devices.

While Adaptive Fast charging is faster than USB-PD when adjusting for battery capacity, it’s still significantly slower than Supercharge and Dash Charge, and slightly slower than Quick Charge. It features a peak power delivery of 15W (5V/3A) which is in line with other standards, but Samsung seems to be quite conservative with its charging times — this is particularly evident when charging under load, as the charging rate becomes nearly linear, and has the slowest charging rate out of all devices we’ve tested for this article. That being said, the temperature difference is also the smallest of the bunch, and throttling the charging speeds and minimizing temperature led to consistent performance under usage.

 

Under both circumstances (regular charging and charging under load*) Samsung’s solution is the slowest (without adjusting for battery capacities) and the coolest (or, rather, features the smallest range of temperatures). This emphasis on stability and consideration for thermals is now more important to Samsung more than ever, after what happened with their Galaxy Note 7 and its faulty batteries. While there might be no correlation between this approach to fast charging and this incident – after all, as we’ve mentioned, their standard has remained largely constant over time – it’s still worth considering that a safer approach to fast charging is not bad in and of itself.

 

This is especially true for Samsung devices, which also provide an additional different rapid charging solution altogether — fast wireless charging. While conventional wireless charging was gaining popularity a few years back, Samsung is one of the few that stuck with it and then improved upon their implementation by adopting faster wireless charging, which originally cut down charging times from around three hours to just around two. Having this alternative can make up for some of the disadvantages of Adaptive Fast Charging, given wireless charging is a more passive approach that is less cumbersome and thus allows for more regular charging intervals, effectively taking the hassle out of topping up a phone around an office or bedroom space.

* You might notice that the intervals between points in these data sets are smaller than on other stubs and graphs. While gathering data from the GS8+, we stumbled upon a device-specific issue that prevented the PCMark test with UI automation from being carried out properly. We thus revised our data collection and automation tool for the GS8+ and improved the polling mechanism while we were at it. Data added in the future will benefit from these improvements resulting in more accurate or smoother graphs.


This article will be continuously updated as we get our hands on more devices, and get to test newer or updated standards. Stay tuned for more comparisons!

OnePlus 5 to go on sale via select Croma stores from September 19

OnePlus 5 was unveiled on June 20 and released in India on June 22. Even since this launch, the smartphone has been exclusive to the online retailer Amazon India and OnePlus online store. This condition might change from the next week.

OnePlus 5 to go on sale via select Croma stores from September 19

The Chinese smartphone manufacturer has joined hands with the retail chain Croma to increase the offline availability of the OnePlus 5. So long, the OnePlus 5 was available offline only via the OnePlus Experience stores and these stores are located only in Bengaluru and Delhi. Starting from September 19, the customers who are interested in buying the OnePlus 5 can do so from select Croma stores in major cities such as Bengaluru, Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Pune, Ahmedabad, and Hyderabad.

Notably, this is the first time that OnePlus has teamed up with a retail outlet in order to make its smartphones available offline in India.

Going by the recent media reports, the OnePlus 5 is all set to receive the Android 8.0 Oreo update by the end of this year. The company’s founder and CEO, Pete Lau has confirmed the same. The update also hit the yesteryear flagship models – OnePlus 3 and OnePlus 3T. In fact, OnePlus has already started testing the Oreo update on the OnePlus 3 and the testing will soon debut on OnePlus 5 and OnePlus 3T. The update will be rolled out to the users once the testing is successfully completed

The OnePlus 5 has been made in India by Oppo. It is one of the best sellers in the Indian smartphone arena right now. In fact, a recent report has revealed that OnePlus has achieved the highest customer satisfaction rating with 100% buyers saying that they are satisfied with the brand. Undoubtedly, the company is focusing more on the user experience by rolling out timely updates with bug fixes to its smartphones.

OnePlus 6 release date and rumours: What will next year’s OnePlus handset look like?

OnePlus has completely disrupted the market with its series of excellent but affordable smartphones. The recently released OnePlus 5 continues in that tradition – albeit at a higher price than we’ve become accustomed to.

This week, the Chinese company set minds racing by announcing a mystery event in Paris on 19 September: a new collection in collaboration with French designer Jean-Charles de Castelbajac. Could this be something OnePlus 6 related? Almost certainly not. The clever

Almost certainly not. It could plausibly relate to a OnePlus 3T style device – a placeholder between two handsets – but even a OnePlus 5T seems a touch unlikely, given the timeframe that would be involved. The OnePlus 5 only came out in June, after all. It more likely relates to a special edition OnePlus 5, but we can dream.

As you might expect, there’s not much to say about the OnePlus 6 yet. But we’ve got to start somewhere, and at the very least there are some interesting discussion points…

OnePlus 6: Rumours

There aren’t really any rumours yet. The closest we’ve come to one is OnePlus founder Carl Pei asking a Reddit user where they preferred the fingerprint reader. I mean, it’s interesting that he’s open minded on the topic, but it’s hardly the basis of a convincing rumour.

Other than that, we’re expecting the OnePlus 6 to stick with the dual lens camera, given the success of the model on the OnePlus 5. Rumours of a bump to a 2K screen have been doing the rounds for several generations now, and once again they’re in full flow here. In support: most flagship phones hit that level, and if you want a device for VR, it’s a sensible strategy. The case against: it’s more expensive, hits battery and isn’t that helpful for 95% of smartphone use cases.

We think they’re sticking with the headphone jack though. Carl Pei once put the idea to his Twitter followers in an informal poll, and it was roundly defeated.

OnePlus 6: Release date

The OnePlus One launched in April 2014. The OnePlus 2 was July 2015, and the OnePlus 3 appeared in June 2016. The OnePlus 3T bucked the trend with a November 2016 launch, but it was an incremental update, before the OnePlus 5 arrived in June 2017.

With that in mind, June-July 2018 seems pretty likely to us – unless they treat us to a OnePlus 5T.

OnePlus 6: Price

This is where it gets a bit tricky.

The series has undergone some serious price hikes since its debut in 2014, jumping from £229 to £450 in three years.

It could get worse. In a recent Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything), Pei suggested the company could consider making a smartphone that costs over $800 (~£612). “Costs are increasing YoY, we only make flagship products, and we don’t believe in selling products at a loss,” Pei explained.

With these two factors in mind, you’d be foolish to bet on the price dropping below £450 – but it may not go too much higher, as the company clearly still plans to undercut. With that in mind, I’d predict a handset that costs around £500 when it launches – but as ever, we’ll be updating this piece when we know more.

Why OnePlus is Still Succeeding with Developers and Enthusiasts

We all know OnePlus to be a brand that began its journey through controversy. The OnePlus One remained in the limelight not only for its hardware and price tag, but also for all the claims and tactics employed by OnePlus to ensure that the device became one of the most talked about smartphones in enthusiast circles. It was an exercise in viral online marketing, and they arguably succeeded.

 

With the OnePlus 2, they tried to adopt a slightly different approach than what worked with the OnePlus One. While the company doubled down on hyperbole with the “2016 Flagship Killer” moniker, OnePlus did tone down their once socially-controversial marketing tactics, foregoing practices such as “Ladies First” and the thoroughly-hated Invite system. What they also toned down was the developer friendliness of the device, as a few key resources (like sources for the fingerprint sensor and laser autofocus for the camera, and VoLTE support) were not delivered to the community at the times requested. As such, the development scene of the phone could not reach the levels of its predecessor.

After the OnePlus 2 Update Trainwreck, Software Support is Paramount to OnePlus’ Success

The OnePlus X, although a capable product targeting an increasingly forgotten niche (small-screen smartphones), was rather awkwardly placed in market for a fair few reasons: some related to its smaller screen size and hence subsequent demand, and some related to the average-at-best hardware… ultimately the phone could never take off.

And then came the OnePlus 3. The actual 2016 flagship (pre-3T) fixed a lot of wrongs with the OnePlus 2. Combined with the best SoC from Qualcomm in the form of the Snapdragon 820, the OnePlus 3 was better suited for the flagship killer moniker based on its commendable performance. The phone could stand up against several flagships in terms of overall hardware, some hovering at twice the price, and still come out ahead. There were a few drawbacks with the device, like an average camera experience, but such issues could be overlooked when considering the phone’s price and rest of the hardware and software experience, as well as genuinely useful features like Dash Charge or the alert slider.

Suggested reading: Dissecting Performance: What Makes the OnePlus 3 & 3T Excellent Real-World Performers

Something OnePlus also improved on the OnePlus 3 was its developer responsiveness, communication and strategy. The company was perhaps fearing repeating the mistakes they had made with the OnePlus 2, and seeing how the community collectively hated OnePlus’s attitude towards the device, they turned over a new leaf. The company started off on the right foot by dismantling the criticized invite-system for the device for good. This was followed up by a very quick release of the kernel sources and device tree for the device — mere hours after the launch of the phone. We even saw one of the quickest CyanogenMod (unofficial) releases ever. Developers did note that one key feature and major selling point was missing from the sources: Dash Charging. OnePlus promised that this would reach developers eventually, and followed up on the promise by releasing the Dash Charging kernel code and proprietary binaries in about six weeks of the phone’s release. We still have not achieved resolution when it comes to the issue related to camera quality on custom ROMs, though that’s not really the fault of OnePlus due to the fact that open sourcing the camera HAL is not be as easy as Carl Pei originally thought. Either way, OnePlus did go out of its way to help developers by setting up communication channels with them, and in some cases handing out units to them as well.

Roughly a year ago, OnePlus also announced a key change with how it handled software and updates. OnePlus was looking at merging its Chinese software UX, HydrogenOS with its global software UX, OxygenOS. The primary purpose of this merger was to combine both the teams onto the same roadmap and provide quicker software updates to all users, irrespective of region. Originally, people questioned how this change would shape up the new OxygenOS experience, as HydrogenOS tended to lean towards a brighter and more customized UX, one that was likely appreciated by users in China but was not liked as much in the global market given it was quite removed from Stock Android. However, as we have witnessed so far, a lot of the changes in OxygenOS over the year have been unanimously accepted by the users. Some changes, like the Alert Slider changes do continue to infuriate some users. But for the most part, the response to OxygenOS has been positive as it balances itself between customizations and a close to stock Android feel (as opposed to HydrogenOS, a direction that could have been taken by OnePlus).

The major highlight of OxygenOS from an enthusiast’s perspective is the division of updates between the Stable branch and the Open Beta branch (previously known as Community builds). Such a division clearly divided the needs of the enthusiast community from that of the average consumer, allowing OnePlus to serve the needs of both without alienating the other. An average consumer is a lot less accommodating towards bugs and would gladly wait for a polished product instead of something that could break during daily use. An enthusiast on the other hand, often trades that expectation of stability for a chance to try out the latest developmental and experimental features right now and provides feedback to help shape the future of such features.

The Open Beta essentially serves as a very long soak test. Most other OEMs resort to private soak testing before beginning staged rollouts, and then sometimes end up pausing such rollouts when unforeseen bugs appear. Adopting the Open Beta approach allows OnePlus to secure a wider tester audience, a wider timeframe and wider use cases to test and polish updates before beginning their rollouts in the stable channel. And, unlike traditional soak tests, they actually make it an effort to continuously add new features.

The Open Betas themselves have become very popular within the enthusiast community. Despite not being considered as stable themselves, the builds are usually fine for general usage and are good candidates for daily drivers for people who do not mind an occasional bug. Over the year, and as far as the OnePlus 3 and OnePlus 3T are concerned, OxygenOS Open Betas have played testing ground to features like expanded screenshots, data firewall and data saver, gaming do not disturb mode, automatic night mode, EIS and camera quality improvements, ambient display and lift up display, app locker, parallel apps and much, much more. As a consequence though, there is a significant time lag in these features appearing in Open Betas to them appearing in the Stable release, even after they have been seemingly perfected.

With the launch of the OnePlus 3T, some were concerned that OnePlus would be ignoring the OnePlus 3 to favor the newer device. These were fueled by OnePlus’ decision to entirely discontinue the sales of the OnePlus 3 after existing stock depletion despite the device being just about half a year old. But as they promised, software support for the OnePlus 3 continued alongside the OnePlus 3T. With the merging of OxygenOS for both the devices into a single unified build, both devices have essentially become the same phone as far as software is concerned. The unified build approach was also adopted by the custom ROM development community and most major works present in our forums provide a single set of modifications to be applied irrespective of the specific phone (3 or 3T), with certain packages discerning how to apply specific changes upon flashing. So while many people would still consider a half yearly upgrade controversial and largely unnecessary, myself included, it did have an impact in how the developer community shaped around these two devices. A refresh may have just prolonged the scope of the OnePlus 3 by convincing more people to purchase a OnePlus 3T, in turn increasing the combined user base.

OnePlus’s rediscovered willingness to aid developers thankfully did not stop at the OnePlus 3/3T, even though they had a few setbacks as they haven’t always complied with the GPLv2 in time. When the OnePlus 5 arrived, it came along with the device tree and kernel sources needed to kickstart development activities right at the get-go. The phone followed it up with several OxygenOS updates that added in missing features like EIS capabilities on 4K video as well as several bugfixes. The OnePlus 5 does not have an Open Beta program just yet, but this will change once the OnePlus 3/3T are updated to Android Oreo.


What happens to the OnePlus 3 and 3T after Oreo?

Sadly, it is too early to say what happens when OnePlus brings over Oreo to the 3/3T. Android 8.0 will be the final major version update for this set of devices from OnePlus, so the phones will very likely need to rely on the community to help it tide over the rest of its years. That is not to say that the OnePlus 3/3T will not receive any updates beyond Oreo as OnePlus’s statement does leave open the possibility of smaller, minor updates.

And the Oreo update just seems to be right around the corner. The OnePlus 3 Closed Beta group has already received its first taste of Android Oreo, and the company aims to deliver an Oreo build to the Open Beta channels by the end of September for the OnePlus 3/3T as well as the OnePlus 5. For a change, OnePlus is not mentioning any deadlines for delivering Oreo in the stable channels, preferring to just act quick and hopefully let their actions speak for themselves.

What we would like to point out with this article is that OnePlus as a company does appear to have evolved into a more mature entity, one that realizes that fulfilling promises matters, and that actions can speak louder than words. The OnePlus 2 was criticized heavily for being a classic case of overpromising, compromising and under delivering, but the past year with the OnePlus 3, OnePlus 3T and now with the OnePlus 5, the situation does appear changed.

That is not to say that OnePlus is without faults, nor is it to say that their current products are free from any issues. In fact, we at XDA-Developers have been the first ones to break controversial articles highlighting several shortcomings. We criticized the OnePlus 3 and its aggressive RAM management and inaccurate display calibration in the Reviewer software builds; to which OnePlus had to respond with a Reviewer OTA that fixed these issues. We revealed upon the OnePlus 5 launch how OnePlus was manipulating benchmarks to maximize scores; to which OnePlus responded with statements that mentioned that these were intended to showcase the peak potential of the device, and that such performance is “natural” (we disagree) as well as sustainable and does no harm to the device as there is no overclocking involved. The OnePlus 5 inverted display issue which caused jelly scrolling was also documented and confirmed by us;  to which OnePlus responded that the visual effect is “natural” and there exists no variance in screens between devices. We’ve also covered the 911-reboot bug on the OnePlus 5; OnePlus responded with a quick hotfix OTA update as well as followed it up by explaining the cause of the bug and mentioning that they worked with Qualcomm directly to fix the issue (which was reportedly present on phones from other OEMs as well).

The frequency and timeliness of the responses to these “controversies” is what differentiates the OnePlus of 2015 from the company post-OnePlus 2; even if the responses may not be what we would have liked them to be. Overall, their public relations team has seemingly done a good job at responding to the hiccups the company has had, even if they lost a few fans along the way. The community still has a few complaints carried over from the OnePlus 2 and OnePlus X as well, like how the Marshmallow update for the X was delayed for far too long; and how OnePlus backtracked on their own promise to deliver Nougat to their 2016 flagship killer after keeping owners in the dark for several months.

But beyond that, it’s fair to say that the OnePlus 3 marked the company’s coming of age as an OEM. And as members of a website that focuses on software modifications, it’s refreshing to see that their flagships have at least partially filled in the void left behind by the demise of the Nexus program. All of OnePlus’ devices have already received unofficial Android 8.0 Oreo builds:

So it’s not too difficult to see why OnePlus continues to remain a popular choice in our forums, and why it’s becoming increasingly popular among mainstream consumers in several markets as well (for different reasons). Their ability to respond to their vocal community definitely had a hand in their recent successes, or at the very least, minimizing their recent missteps (and there have been many).


 

OnePlus 3 Closed Beta Group Receives Android Oreo

Fans of OnePlus may not be fans of the company’s faults, especially when it comes to updates. The OnePlus 2 is considered the forgotten child of OnePlus, promised an update to Nougat but it was never received. The device only received one major upgrade, a pretty abysmal state to be in. According to the OnePlus 3 closed beta group, things are changing for the Shenzhen based company.

OnePlus are looking to make a change. They’re serious, and to show that they are aiming for the OnePlus 3/OnePlus 3T to receive a public beta by the end of September 2017 running Android Oreo. OxygenOS being extremely minimal in terms of modifications to Android, people are hopeful that we can see the first Open Beta release by the end of September, though there have been no guarantees. They are currently requesting closed beta users to take logs when there are issues, either in installation or with various system functions.

OnePlus are not known for being “quick to update”, yet from the person reporting from the closed beta group, OnePlus seem to want to change that. Rather than making a promise and restricting themselves to a deadline, they would rather just act and get it out when it’s ready. This marks a change for the company.

So far it seems OnePlus are facing many bugs on their Android Oreo build. With broken NFC, bugged WiFi, inconsistent hotspots and Bluetooth issues, it seems OnePlus are a good bit away from having an Open Beta worthy release. Because of this, we might not see a Public/Open Beta until after September. OnePlus don’t plan to release the Open Beta just for the OnePlus 3, but for the OnePlus 3T and OnePlus 5 as well, presumably at a similar time.

OnePlus could be one of the first to release Android Oreo for their devices. For a technology company which some would know as slow to update their devices, that’s a crazy thought that they may next be one of the quickest — though to be fair, they did a decent job with Android Nougat last year. We’ll need to wait and see if OnePlus include Project Treble in the incremental upgrade. They don’t have to, as none of their devices launched with Android Oreo, but it would be a great parting gift to the community in a final update for the OnePlus 3 and OnePlus 3T.


Via: AndroidPolice

OnePlus 5 review: Still the best value smartphone, but what about the OnePlus 5T?

Update: Is the OnePlus 5T launch on the horizon?

With the world’s gaze currently fixed to Apple’s iPhone 8 launch, there’s something else on the horizon you should be paying close attention to. Yep, that’s right – there’s the likelihood that a new OnePlus phone is in the works, and its name isn’t much of a surprise. The OnePlus 5T might be here come the end of the year.

With OnePlus only recently launching its OnePlus 5 to critical acclaim, it might seem silly that the firm is gearing up for a new edition of its flagship handset. But, cast your eyes to last year’s OnePlus 3 – we did see the OnePlus 3T show up on shop shelves in the same year, complete with a better chipset and marginal camera improvements. We can expect the same differences this year with the OnePlus 5T.

Where have I gained this sense of OnePlus 5T clairvoyance? Well, OnePlus has scheduled an event for 19 September 2017, in Paris – where the firm is expected to make the grand unveiling.

Back to the OnePlus 5 however, and you can check out my original OnePlus 5 review, below.

OnePlus 5 review

OnePlus, it seems, has suffered from a severe case of tetraphobia. That is, the superstitious fear of using the number 4. The Chinese manufacturer’s latest isn’t called the OnePlus 4, as you’d expect the phone succeeding the OnePlus 3T to be called. No, this is the OnePlus 5, and it’s the best (if most expensive) smartphone the firm has ever produced.

OnePlus may have been overly cautious with its name, but not so much when keeping key details under wraps prior to the official unveiling. Again, and not uncommon for 2017, little was left to the imagination ahead of its launch – we knew everything. Don’t let that stop your excitement, though: there’s plenty on offer that makes the OnePlus 5 a worthy contender for phone of the year.

READ NEXT: Best smartphone 2017

OnePlus 5 review: What you need to know

The OnePlus 5 is a flagship killer. Designed to undercut the likes of Samsung’s Galaxy S8 and Apple’s iPhone 7 by a considerable margin, without sacrificing neither looks nor performance. Launched in June: the OnePlus 5 is a 5.5in smartphone with an AMOLED Full HD screen and a dual-lens camera that doesn’t look out of place on the shelf next to those other, top-dollar smartphones launched in 2017.

OnePlus 5 review: Price and competition

Essential to the OnePlus 5’s lasting appeal lies in its more wallet-pleasing asking price. At £449, OnePlus’ sixth smartphone undermines the mortgage-inducing price tag of its flagship competitors.

However, 2017 has already been a phenomenal year for flagship-killing alternatives. There’s Samsung’s Galaxy A5 mid-ranger, complete with a 22-hour battery life for just £293. The Honor 8 is still kicking about, too, with its brilliant low-light camera at £370. That, and the OnePlus 3T can be picked up for £400.

OnePlus 5 review: Design

At first glance, the OnePlus 5 looks like typical smartphone fare. You can’t veer too far from a black rectangle after all, and it looks eerily similar to Huawei’s P10 (and the iPhone 7 it imitates).

It’s a bold new look for OnePlus nonetheless. In keeping with Apple’s minimalism, there’s the aluminium unibody design, with just a handful of distinguishing features, including a dual-lens camera protrusion on the back. Rest assured – that beloved “do not disturb” switch makes another appearance on the left edge, too.

Next to it, you’ll find the volume rocker, and on the opposite side, the power button. A 3.5mm headset jack is at the bottom (phew) sitting next to a solitary USB Type-C with Dash Charge support and a central fingerprint scanner as before. This is the skinniest OnePlus yet, measuring just 7.25mm, and it feels phenomenal in the hand. 

OnePlus 5 review: Performance and battery life

As the leaks suggested, the OnePlus 5’s internal architecture comes from Qualcomm’s latest 2.45GHz Snapdragon 835 chip, up from the 2.35GHz Snapdragon 831 inside the 3T. It will be a near-perfect multi-tasker with a generous 6- or 8GB of RAM, with storage options starting at 64GB.

It’s no surprise then, that the OnePlus 5 is one of the best performers we’ve seen thus far. In short, as you can see by the graph below, the OnePlus 5 is near-identical to Samsung’s Galaxy S8 and the HTC U11 in both single-core and multi-core performance, with the OnePlus edging slightly ahead. Fantastic then, considering the OnePlus 5 is almost £200 cheaper than its identical performers. 

Likewise, the OnePlus’ graphics performance is more than good enough to handle anything Google Play throws at it. Again, as the below chart proves, the OnePlus 5’s on-screen result is identical to the iPhone 7 Plus’, and beats the Galaxy S8 by a considerable margin. Why’s this? Well, the S8’s added screen resolution plays a massive part, having to render at 2,960 x 1,440 resolution rather than the OnePlus’ 1,920 x 1,080 – i.e. double the number of pixels. 

The last thing to test, and crucially the most important, is the OnePlus’ battery life. Longevity is the biggest thing people look for when making their smartphone buying decision these days, and the OnePlus 5 doesn’t disappoint.

In our battery life test, with the screen set to our standard 170cd/m2 brightness and flight mode turned on, the OnePlus 5 lasted a near-perfect 20hrs and 40mins. In reference: that’s over twice as long as Sony’s XZ Premium, and near-identical to Samsung’s similarly impressive Galaxy S8 Plus.

And should battery levels fall flat, the phone charges incredibly fast thanks to the Dash Charge 3 charger bundled in the box. After 12 minutes of charging from zero, battery levels had reached 21%, and after just 39 minutes there was 75% worth of juice. It’s not so fast after that, taking another 15 minutes or so to reach 100%.

OnePlus 5 review: Display

Rather than going the big-screened approach like with LG’s G6 and Samsung’s Galaxy S8, OnePlus is keeping things simple, with a 5.5in 1,920 x 1080 display. It’s the same as last year’s offering I hear you cry, but there are a handful of changes worthy of your attention.

The biggest, and welcome, change is a DCI-P3 colour profile, along with the standard sRGB and a custom profile. The latter, I expect, will be most user’s go-to setting, with overly-bright, punchy images that are perhaps a touch too oversaturated for my tastes. 

That brings us to the issue of sRGB. The panel on this year’s OnePlus isn’t as nice as I’d want it to be, only covering 89.8% of the sRGB colour space profile, with particularly dull-looking reds. An average delta E of 1.76 is hardly apocalyptic, but I’ve seen much better.

The DCI-P3’s pre-calibrated mode fared much better, with the OnePlus hitting 95.3% of the sRGB colour gamut. It’s a perfectly readable display in bright sunlight too, reaching 419cd/m2 at top brightness.

Where the firm has quite obviously poured all its money into, is the OnePlus 5’s dual-lens camera.

OnePlus 5 review: Camera

The rear snapper, manufactured in collaboration with DxO Labs, incorporates one 16-megapixel, f/1.7 main camera and another, 20-megapixel f/2.6 telephoto camera right beside it. Both work hand in hand to produce fantastic-quality snaps and some of the best I’ve seen on a device at this price point.

That 16-megapixel camera is your main snapper, but just like with the iPhone 7 Plus, the 20-megapixel camera works as a 2X zoom for getting closer to objects in the distance. It’ll also help with producing an iPhone-like Bokeh effect, blurring the background without sacrificing subject quality. 

One of the features OnePlus made most of at the launch is its HDR algorithm improvements, although there’s little evidence of that in my test shots. Not only are the effects of HDR basically non-existent, in some shots colours looked completely off. One of my tests shots below highlights this well: the no-smoking sign should be red, rather than the grey it seems to be showing.

Don’t let that put you off, though: the OnePlus 5 still produces some wonderfully detail-rich and perfectly exposed shots in regular mode. While low light snaps seemed to suffer a little from over sharpening and a touch of unnatural processing, the results were incredibly crisp, still looking remarkable compared to the Pixel’s top-quality snapper.

The front-facing camera has seen a boost to 16-megapixels, with a f/2.0 aperture – perfect for your Instagram-worthy vanity shots. Video quality is very good as well. Not only is the camera able to capture detail-rich 4K footage, it benefits from ultra-smooth electronic image stabilisation (EIS), making it look like the phone is sitting on a proper Steadicam rig.

As you can see in my test footage against the OnePlus 5 before the update, the EIS does a phenomenal job.

This feature wasn’t in the original software release for the phone, only added a couple of months after release, but improvements and additions such as this demonstrate OnePlus’ commitment to keeping the phone’s software up to date and current, and bode well for the immediate future. Let’s hope for a move to Android O sometime soon as well.

OnePlus 5 review: Verdict

OnePlus has a solid flagship killer with its OnePlus 5. This is the best smartphone the firm has ever produced, and I’m thoroughly impressed with what the Chinese firm has been up to since its predecessor’s launch.

As with all smartphones, the success of the OnePlus 5 rests on its asking price. With the cost rising from £399 to £449, the OnePlus 5 is in danger of losing its best mid-range smartphone tag, especially now the far more capable Samsung Galaxy S8 has fallen in price.

The OnePlus 5 remains the best value smartphone on the market, then, but it’s not quite the outright bargain its predecessors were.

Hardware
Processor Octa-core 2.45GHz / 1.8GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 835
RAM 6 / 8GB
Screen size 5.5in
Screen resolution 1,920 x 1,080
Screen type AMOLED
Front camera 16-megapixel
Rear camera 20-megapixel, 16-megapixel
Flash Dual-LED
GPS Yes
Compass Yes
Storage (free) 128GB
Memory card slot (supplied) N/A
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
Bluetooth 5.0
NFC Yes
Wireless data 4G
Dimensions 154 x 74 x 7.3mm
Weight 153g
Features
Operating system Android 7.1
Battery size 3,300mAh

OnePlus 5 Android 8.0 Oreo beta release date scheduled for this month | Tech | Life & Style

OnePlus 5 users should be able to test-out the latest Android features very soon, as OnePlus launched plans to launch an Android Oreo public beta by the end of September.

The ambitious plans to roll-out Android 8.0 Oreo to users in matter of weeks was first broken by technology blog Android Police.

It claims the Shenzhen-based smartphone start-up purportedly wants its hardware to be viewed as “quick to update” to the latest operating systems.

OnePlus’ hardware runs an almost-untouched version of Android, with only a few minimal additions and tweaks.

This near-stock experience should allow the hugely-popular Chinese company to get the latest Android updates faster than some of its closest rivals, which layer more visual changes onto the Google operating system.

OnePlus has already launched a closed Android 8.0 Oreo beta for its OnePlus 3 smartphone.

The smartphone, which was first unveiled back in June 2016, is the first OnePlus smartphone to get the new software.

However, the beta build is purportedly incredibly unstable, with OnePlus warning ambitious users that over-the-air upgrades are likely to go wrong.

Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth are all said to be buggy in the first Android 8.0 Oreo build.

OnePlus is ambitiously planning to turn all of this around in the next few weeks – with stable closed beta builds by mid-September, followed by a public beta by the end of the month.

Should everything go to plan, OnePlus will almost certainly be one of the first to offer an Oreo update to its users.

According to the company, a successful verification via StudentBeans is valid for one calendar year at oneplus.net, in which time one purchase with the student discount can be applied.

“After your verification expires, you must re-verify to claim a new student discount,” OnePlus cautions.

OnePlus has limited the 10 per cent to one new smartphone.