After months of anticipation, and slightly earlier than its June release window, OnePlus has finally unveiled its newest flagship, the OnePlus 6. Rumors started way back in January about the device, with many corroborating what we’ve seen from today’s release.
Love it or hate it, the OnePlus 6 features the controversial notch on the top of its 19:9, 6.28-inch AMOLED display. Yet OnePlus will also allow users to hide the notch in a software update that will come soon after the release of the device.
Although the notch isn’t the most loved design feature, it does serve a good purpose. It allows manufacturers to increase the screen real estate while also housing the front camera, earpiece, and sensors. The notch doesn’t make the phone virtually bezel-less like the Doogee Mix 4, but it does get closer to having a 100% bezel-to-body ratio. Plus, OnePlus designed the screen to flow beautifully into the minimal bezels to make it appear like they’re not there at all.
OnePlus also tested some of the top apps in the Play Store to see how they interacted with the notch. Apparently, the tests went well, as OnePlus decided to implement the notch on the top of the screen. So while it’s not everyone’s favorite feature, it’s definitely here to stay for a while.
The OnePlus 6 revealed: can larger players make a comeback?
The OnePlus 6 touts flagship-level specs at almost half the price of large players like Samsung and Google. The former saw mediocre sales of the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus, which were unveiled at MWC. Yet Samsung is looking to dig itself out of that hole with the upcoming Galaxy Note 9, as well as the mid-tier Galaxy A6 line.
The newest device from OnePlus carries a Snapdragon 845, and starts with 6GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage, all for $529 USD / $699 CAD. The specs ramp up all the way to a variant with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage for $629 USD / $839 CAD.
Unless you’re an avid photographer or you take a lot of 4K videos, which the OnePlus 6 can now shoot, we don’t see you needing that much storage. 8GB of RAM is a little overkill in phones anyways, and most users won’t notice the difference between that and 6GB of RAM. If you’re on a budget, the 6GB RAM, 128GB internal storage variant is probably the best bang for your buck.
To help out with the price, OnePlus is even offering special discounts and a sweepstakes where people can get perks such as free shipping and can win new OnePlus 6 devices.
You can check out all the other specs on the OnePlus 6 in our previous article, covering everything about the device.
The OnePlus 6 takes the spotlight with its flashy design
OnePlus wanted this phone to steal the show, and boy did it ever. In a first for the company, the OnePlus 6 sports an all-glass back, which replaces the aluminum casing that previous OnePlus devices carried.
The press release states that this is “the first in OnePlus’ line of flagships to feature an all-glass design”, which indicates the metal backs are gone for good. The change marks a turning point for the company as it follows other manufacturers like Apple, Huawei, Samsung, and more towards an all-glass future.
Unfortunately, even though we get a sleek, all-glass phone, we don’t get wireless charging in this iteration of the OnePlus line. While this may be a make-or-break feature for some, we don’t think it will make most people put away their wallets. Also, having a glass structure allows phones to receive mobile signals much better, and with 5G technologies coming soon, it’s becoming more difficult for manufacturers to make metal phones.
Don’t let the glass fool you either. It wouldn’t be a device release without someone trying to break it, burn it, or bend it, which is exactly what YouTuber JerryRigEverything tried to do. Check out the video below:
Not much else has changed in the design of Oneplus’ newest flagship. The device still retains the headphone jack and the USB-C port, however the textured mute button does switch sides on the phone. This is reportedly due to a design constraint that OnePlus engineers couldn’t change.
One thing that’s missing on the phone though is waterproof certification. Even though OnePlus claims that the device has “comparable” water resistance to most current flagships, we won’t be testing that feature out. IP certification can be seen on most mid-tier to flagship phones, however it is a costly thing to implement.
The certification involves intensive tests to determine if water and other liquids can get into the device. And when we say it involves a lot of adhesive on every port, we mean A LOT.
Finally, we don’t get as much of a color choice as we thought, with the OnePlus only arriving in 3 flavors: Midnight Black, Mirror Black, or Silk White. Like previous releases, we expect the company to roll out skin customizations and various colors soon after the device becomes available.
“The Speed You Need”
The OnePlus 6 campaign was marked by slogans such as “The Speed You Need” and “Never Settle”, but will consumer demand live up to the hype?
The device does carry the latest and greatest: OnePlus’ signature Oxygen OS, powered by a Snapdragon 845 chipset, Adreno 630 GPU, and up to 8GB of RAM. It also packs a 3300-mAh battery and comes with Fast Charging, which claims to give you a day’s charge in 30 minutes.
Yet OnePlus also has a lot of contenders to deal with. Xiaomi looks to be leading the charge with its Blackshark gaming phone, along with the Mi Mix 2S. Huawei isn’t too far behind with its recently-released P20 lineup and Honor 10 devices.
Overall, while the OnePlus 6 does come with a higher price tag, which may be unaffordable to some, the device packs specs that make it well worth the money. We see the OnePlus 6 selling out quickly, judging from the surprising demand of the OnePlus 5T.
What do you think of the OnePlus 6? Will you be first in line for the device? Let us know in the comments!