Then there was the Coronavirus and then smartphone sales began dwindling because people were losing their jobs in millions and yeah that never stopped Samsung from putting out the Galaxy S20 Ultra as well as the Galaxy Z – Flip which all cots a lot but one small arch-rival of Samsung isn’t the big Apple or screwed Huawei but a rather smaller company that wants to always make the company look bad by offering devices that has super magnificent specifications yet at a much lower price point and yeah, we have the OnePlus always sweeping the world with it’s awesome devices every year.
The new OnePlus 8 Pro is one of such high-end device which you’d want to pick right over a Samsung if you really don’t want to get through to the $1000 price mark because this device starts at just $899.
Don’t get me wrong, $899 isn’t a small money and especially during this time that we might be looking at a recession standing right in front of us due to the pandemic. But OnePlus use really expensive components to build its smartphone which should make the price much higher than they are usually offered. I mean some of us have seen some devices and wonder why they cost so much despite having nothing really fascinating.
One might argue that Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra is the peak of Android smartphones so far this year but even with the notoriously awesome Huawei P40 Pro + or the Xiaomi Mi 10 Pro which are dazzling superb but then we have the OnePlus 8 Pro which really took it up from the previous year’s OnePlus 7T Pro. There is of course the OnePlus 8 (without “pro”) which also offer immersive feature but a little bit more needs to be said about this device but so that it won’t sound like a hype up, lets talk about what makes this a smartphone you might want to buy in 2020 right over the Galaxys, iPhones or even the Huaweis and Xiaomis.
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EVERYTHING GOOD AND BAD ABOUT THE ONEPLUS 8 PRO
If there is anywhere the OnePlus 8 Pro excels well, it’s within the hardware department. Featuring a quite big 6.78-inch display with an ultra-thin bezels is a good thing on one hand but then this might be a curse on the other hand considering the fact that it’s just big like that and there is nothing you can do about it. Ret Silo once said smartphones are ever going to keep getting bigger but then we have to really wonder the cause of this. I personally think it’s because big smartphones are cool and majority of the world population sort of like it like that hence who would make something nobody wants in the first place? So if you have a small hand, you might just opt for the new iPhone SE (2020) which is much smaller and much cheaper.
Personally I like big smartphones but the fact that OnePlus is able to tuck a big display right under the slightly small body of this device is an interesting thing to consider. I mean Huawei had at some point overdone it before when it came with the Mate 20X 5G last year which had a giant 7.2-inch OLED display.
But in terms of it’s build quality, the OnePlus 8 Pro when placed right next to other top guns like the iPhone 11 Pro Max or the Galaxy S20 Ultra, this device is really premium and feels like it in every way possible. This is the kind of smartphone you don’t necessarily need to carry as though it will fall apart if mishandled in anyway.
The color blue with it’s matte finish on the back is really impressive and again this seems to be the norm in 2020 after Apple gave us the iPhone 11 last year which had the Matte back which is really cool and that did away with fingerprint smudges. But then we have the ridiculously bumpy camera compartment right at the center of the device which will make the device wobble if placed on a flat surface especially if you do not include the back case which OnePlus provide free of charge within the device’s boxing.
Still talking about the design and hardware, OnePlus 8 Pro has this sliding ringer switch right at the side of the device with which you can quietly switch between audio profiles such as Silence, Vibration or Loud ringer but that depends on your nature completely because OnePlus doesn’t want you to disturb other people with the loud stereo speakers firing from the bottom of the device.
But aside that little detail, the OnePlus 8 Pro is certified IP68 which makes it water and dust resistant meanwhile, that’s in case of accident because you aren’t supposed to go showering with your smartphone unless you hate the device so much. Even JerriRigEverything did a durability test on this device and it came out in flying colors. First, the Gorilla Glass protecting the display did a great job but as the saying goes “Glass is glass and Glass breaks.” meant you are still going to need an extra layer of tempered glass to further protect your OnePlus 8 Pro from sudden scratches from really sharp objects.
The OnePlus 8 Pro include everything you’d expect from a premium smartphone. Featuring the new Snapdragon 865 processor which supports 5G technology though this technology is under constant threats from conspiracy theorist in the UK and some part of the world.
But that aside, the OnePlus 8 Pro also has storage capacity that range from 8GB of LPDDR5 RAM with 128GB of internal storage to 12GB of LPDDR5 RAM coupled with a much bigger 256GB of internal storage all based on UFS 3.0 stotrage technology. There’s an in-display optical fingerprint sensor, Gorilla Glass, and even dual-SIM slots (a relative rarity in the US).
With all these specifications, you’d expect a really fast smartphone that offer nothing but speedy processing and thanks to the display which OnePlus brags can display 1 billion color compared to your ultra-expensive Galaxy S20 Ultra which can only display 16M colors.
OnePlus is also trying to build a lineup of devices to further create it’s own ecosystem and thanks to the Oxygen OS 10 (OnePlus’ Android 10 skin) which is helping the company realize that goal but that in a moment. The unprecedented speed you’ll get from using the hardware of this device makes it mind blowing but there is something I don’t like about the device…the design aesthetics just do not go much with me.
Ask me how? Maybe I’m the guy who loves fanciful stuffs I mean we’ve seen what Samsung came up with with the Galaxy S20 series or even the Huawei Mate 30 Pro’s horizon display as well as the design aesthetics on the P40 series. Yeah, the OnePlus 8 pro is probably aimed to be as minimalist as possible but I probably do not like my device to look too minimal. Plus the OnePlus 8 Pro seems very similar to the previous generation just this time it’s a hole-punch instead of a slide-out camera or a notch. The device looks very plain and doesn’t look expensive I mean $900 is a big price still because we have the super Nubian RedMagic 5G with super interesting features though it’s a gaming smartphone, it has this fanciful design aesthetic that makes it appear premium no matter where you go. I’m emphasizing on this because OnePlus obviously do not have the global recognition that companies like Samsung or Apple and Huawei has and I really hate people asking me “What’s the name of your device?” Okay that’s all about my complaint about the OnePlus 8 Pro.
LET’S TALK ABOUT THE DISPLAY OF THE ONEPLUS 8 PRO
Alot have been said about the build quality and the durability of the device but if there is anything to be talked about as far as the OnePlus 8 Pro is concerned, it’s the display…yeah, the display. But first the specs. The device features a Fluid AMOLED capacitive touchscreen display with 1 Billion colors which is really immersive.
The 6.78-inch panel feature a 129Hz refresh rate and the device gets a 90.8% screen-to-body ratio so you caee how much OnePlus had managed to squeeze such large display in the device’s 165.3 x 74.4 x 8.5 mm (6.51 x 2.93 x 0.33 in) body. High refresh rate nowadays are the norm and it’s sort of one of the much quality people look for in a premium smartphone right after the camera and processor.
With such a blazing fast display, you’ll definitely be enjoying great videos on this device. Let’s just hope you can use the device to it’s peak by only downloading super large video files with 4K resolution and watch out for your internet subscription (LOL). But not withstanding, my experience with the device’s display is really great and interesting. Switching from different applications and scrolling is breeze free and really fast…believe that. I in fact tried playing some high graphics game on this device it performed really well but it’s not a gaming smartphone so watch out for some warmth when you’ve overplayed those games.
But for whatever reason such as battery consumption or alternatively, when watching movies, you might want to switch to a slower refresh rate but you’ll notice the changes quickly though not some noticeable changes but it’s noticeable…if that make any sense.
Another thing about the display which I think is a little bit quirky is the curved edges which unlike those ultra-curved (Waterfall) displays we found on devices like the Vivo Nex 3 5G or the Huawei Mate 30 Pro whose software are designed in such a way that the curvy edges won’t have any effect when you accidentally touch your display’s screen somehow but you might be accidentally launching applicaations that sits right close to the sides of your OnePlus 8 display which I don’t really find interesting as that can be really annoying as hell. I tried the casing on the device and it was better so with a single hand, you can operate the device without accidentally triggering an app.
OnePlus added a couple of gimmicky screen features for watching videos. One is “Vibrant color effect Pro,” which punches up colors. The other is “Motion Graphics Smoothing,” and it only works in certain apps — including YouTube, Netflix, and Amazon Prime Video. The device also punches up the 24fps video to 120 fps and it’s done smoothly especially when the display is in high refresh rates but that drains your battery enormously.
YOU SHOULD BE FINE WITH THE BATTERY LIFE
It’s not easily drained either. I mean the OnePlus 8 Pro comes with a big 4,510mAh Li-Po battery and those numbers are what makes customer buy smartphones – so yeah, the battery life is okay but it’s not some super long lasting battery like you’ll see in most rugged smartphones.
The high refresh rate is a serious battery enemy so it might be better to just leave the refresh rate at 1080p just as like me so you might be able to get through the day with the battery rather than having to charge every now and then. Intense gaming combined with high refresh rate will also reduce your battery life significantly and remember, over charging your smartphone battery will dwindle their lifespan.
For a normal light user, the battery might see you through the day but heavy users like me who binge the internet and game alot will definitely have a different result. The device also comes with a wireless charging support. You can either get from the official store or just switch to Qi Wireless charger if you have one.
But the big news here is that this is the first OnePlus phone to support wireless charging. Not only that, but wireless charging that can hit 30 watts, juicing up 50 percent of the battery in a half-hour. For comparison, the highest wattage wireless charging Samsung supports is 15 watts, and that’s only on select devices. The iPhone 11 Pro maxes out at 7.5 watts wirelessly.
It genuinely works. I was getting those charging results almost to the minute. To get there, you do have to buy OnePlus’ proprietary wireless charger, however. It’s $69.95, which is significantly more expensive than other wireless chargers. That’s partially because it includes chips to communicate with the phone to prevent overheating. It also has a fan to pull air through a vent behind the phone.
Historically, OnePlus has stuck with wired charging because it’s faster. In fact, it stuck with its proprietary “Warp Charge” system that requires its own charging cable and brick to work That’s still present and working on the OnePlus 8 Pro, but I’m pleased to say that both wired and wireless charging works well with more common chargers. It’ll charge just fine off the Qi pads you may already own, and it will also rapidly charge off of a standard USB-C PD charger.
QUAD REAR CAMERA SETUP (and a gimmicky color filter sensor)
Once again, OnePlus dropped off a great camera setup on this smartphone just as we’ve seen it done on the previous generation of the OnePlus 7 pro last year which has really great and interesting camera specs that blew our minds. The camera system is really great…I mean that’s what you’d expect from OnePlus or maybe the company might just blow our minds next year the more or later on with the OnePlus 8T later on this year.
The camera system consists of a 48 MP primary sensor with f/1.8 aperture, 25mm (wide lens), 1/1.43″, 1.12µm,with features such as omnidirectional PDAF, Laser AF and OIS. The second camera is a smaller 8 MP with f/2.4 aperture, (telephoto sensor), 1/1.0µm, and also has features such as PDAF, OIS and then the 3x optical zoom capacity. Then comes the third sensor which is a 48 MP lens with f/2.2 aperture, 13mm (ultrawide angle lens), 1/2.0″, 0.8µm, and feature PDAF and last but not the least is a smaller 5 MP, f/2.4, (depth sensor).
The paragraph above might sound super techy to you…I mean you just want a smartphone with great camera setup don’t you? Well, the device offer that exactly and snaps great pictures. It can record the following video resolutions: 2160p@30/60fps, 1080p@30/60/240fps, Auto HDR, gyro-EIS so this will be a great device for your vlog or even a professional mobile filmmaking. You can check out ourlist of bet Smartphone gimbals here.
But what is a great smartphone camera if it can’t be compared to other top smartphone cameras in the market. The iPhone 11 Pro for example offer a triple rear camera setup which is outstanding but then we have the OnePlus 8 Pro which also offer outstanding performance too. The device offer a 0.6x ultrawide angle sensing compared to the iPhone 11 pro’s 0.5x.
In the terms of zoom, the Galaxy S20 Ultra is like a beast in this department but while that is a good news to Samsung Galaxy s20 Ultra users, the OnePlus 8 Pro also did a great job creating a 30X zoom even though zooming beyond 10x is a bad vibe.
The 48MP Sony sensor on the device produces a great 12 Million Pixels of images by default and the color accuracy is really fascinating especially in good natural lighting environment but since there is a complete lockdown nationwide, there is no way to really take the device out for a long day spin.
OnePlus also handles video fairly decently. I like that you can use Average is actually ahead of many Android phones (hey there, Pixel 4), but it still isn’t quite as good as what you’ll get with an iPhone 11 Pro.
As for video shooting, the OnePlus 8 Pro offers a superb video processing which is premium level. OnePlus’ “Super Stable” video option even when shooting at full 4K / 30fps can be a great feature to shoot a really stable video which will be as though you are using a gimbal (Though gimbal are still the norm for professional mobile photography). But you cannot compare the quality with say Huawei Mate 30 Pro which has a cine-camera.
As for the front facing camera, it’s housed in a hole-punch o the OLED display right at the left top corner of the device and offer a 16 MP senor with f/2.5 aperture (wide angle lens) and can record 1080p@30fps video resolution and comes with a gyro-EIS. The front camera does smoothen out faces and this makes me look as if I’m from some Hollywood fashion documentary. In low-light, there is a little bit of inconsistencies here and there on the camera.
And yeah, there is the talk-about ” Color Filter” camera which does nothing. Nothing because there are numerous applications to filter out great color qualities on your pictures during post production so this is like a gimmick from my own point of view…Sorry to disappoint.
The OnePlus 8 Pro meets my expectation and like I said at the beginning of this post, it’s just not the kind of smartphone that I’ll rush to the market to pour out my hard-earned money for…NAH! For a $900 price-point, the smartphone did quite well and that will make me degrade it’s competitor to the Galaxy S20 Plus which isn’t bad but just that it’s at the peak which the Galaxy S20 Ultra proudly maintain for now (Let’s see what Google Pixel 5, Huawei Mate 40 or Galaxy Note 20 all have to offer later on this year.)
Great screen, interesting build quality, large memory spaces and 5G technology powered by a strong CPU and not-so-bad camera setup makes the OnePlus 8 Pro a device I would recommend for anyone who wants a device of such high pedigree. The great screen, the battery capacity and fast charging support all contributes to what you’d expect from a premium-tier device which would make me recommend this device to anyone who wants such.