OnePlus One ReviewOnePlus One 8.6
The OnePlus One comes equipped with three microphones that work in tandem, allowing the device to isolate even loud background noise with a high degree of success. Voice is transmitted clearly, and the other side is well aware that it's you, since tonal information isn't lost on the way. Lastly, volume strength is excellent. Definitely above average on this end of the line.
As for the earpiece, things aren't as good. To start off, in order to make the best out of it, you need to keep the earpiece centered on your ear, otherwise you'll muffle it. Truth is, most of the time you will, and that means that volume output won't be very high, though it's definitely not worse than the average out there.
Believe it or not, we actually kept checking up with the OnePlus One during its battery test, as it became clear in the first few hours that we have a challenger here. The phone's score of 8 hours and 5 minutes proved that notion, and actually placed it just below the Sony Xperia Z2, which is the current flagship record holder, with 8 hours and 10 minutes. While this lets the Z2 keep the first spot, it's undeniable that the OnePlus One is just as good at staying online for extended periods of time – something we can confirm from having used the phone for a while now. Unfortunately for some, the 3100 mAh cell is embedded, so you can't remove it easily.
On another, related note, the OnePlus One comes with a wall charger that outputs the healthy 2.1 A of charge. This allows for very quick charge times, or, put in numbers -- 120 minutes from zero to full. That's on par with the LG G3 and Samsung Galaxy S5, but much better when compared with the Sony Xperia Z2 and HTC One M8.
We measure battery life by running a custom web-script, designed to replicate the power consumption of typical real-life usage. All devices that go through the test have their displays set at 200-nit brightness.
Charging timeView all
In a world where the big league game is increasingly about rehashing designs in order to aid recognizability, the OnePlus One strikes us as a welcome distraction from the status quo. This is a fresh alternative, and mostly on account of the used materials with the back shell and the minty-fresh operating system.
But it's not all about the exterior – the beastly hardware, along with the software on the inside, make the One what it is just as much. The lightweight CyanogenMod OS runs very fluidly, and, with some exceptions, proves to be a polished piece of software that can successfully compete with major manufacturers' custom skins. In fact, it probably has a hand-up over them, at least in the eyes of users who prefer Google's light approach towards Android. As for the hardware, it really does provide no-compromise performance, both on and off stage – the One offers excellent display, camera, and call quality, along with outstanding battery life. Add that low starting price of just $299, and you've got yourself one killer device, if you can get it.
Indeed, as we said in the beginning of this review, the OnePlus One is currently sold via an invitation-only system, which means that your chances of being granted the option to buy one are on the very low side. That said, OnePlus has been giving indications that it's planning on scaling up production in the coming months (July/August and beyond), though, at this point, we wouldn't consider this a done deal. Said otherwise, while the OnePlus One currently offers an incredible bang for your buck, it remains to be seen if that will continue to be the case going forward.
Software version of the reviewed unit:
Android Version: 4.4.2
CyanogenMod version: 11.0-XNPH25R
Kernel version: 3.4.0-cyanogenmod-geb9c0a5
Build number: KVT49L
- Downright cheap for what you get
- Outstanding battery life
- Speedy, lightweight, and customizable UI
- Unique use of materials at the rear
- Color-accurate screen
- Very good camera overall
- Very limited availability
- Fairly bulky
- Materials used in the Sandstone Black (rear shell) version might fail the test of time
- Camera UI has some weaknesses that we hope are addressed
- Gallery lacking some functionality
OnePlus One Review - Call quality, Battery and Conclusion