OnePlus One Review
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
1. Duketytz (Posts: 521; Member since: 28 Nov 2013)
You caught the legendary Pokémon! Well done Chris!
3. alltechinside (Posts: 247; Member since: 21 Apr 2013)
Even Legendary Pokemons are easier to find lmfao
25. Jinto (Posts: 410; Member since: 15 Jan 2014)
Lol, google should work with OnePlus for the Nexus 6
32. techperson211 (Posts: 710; Member since: 27 Feb 2014)
I don't think that google will depart with lg in making nexus phones . Look at nexus 4 and 5 they're good flagship phones with affordable prices . This one plus sh*t invite system kills them , I don't think people will be interested in one plus 2, not unless they make it available globally.
33. techperson211 (Posts: 710; Member since: 27 Feb 2014)
I don't think google will depart with lg in making nexus phones. I mean look at the success of nexus 4-5 . They're are flagship phones with prices that are acceptable. This one plus sh*t invite system is so annoying . If they'll do this again to one plus 2 then this all hype of NEVR SETTLE is just plain BS.
4. RaKithAPeiRiZ (Posts: 1384; Member since: 29 Dec 2011)
you forgot to mention that the phone is made out of unobtanuim
5. jellmoo (Posts: 704; Member since: 31 Oct 2011)
Could you at least make some sort of pretend effort to explain the scores in your reviews? It's utterly nonsensical to see a device come through with a great battery, great screen and through the roof benchmarks all at a crazy low price, and then get a score lower than other flagships that don't perform as well.
Do you use a random number generator to calculate the final score?
9. Rydsmith (Posts: 198; Member since: 20 Jun 2012)
It's called reading the review, you should try it sometime.
16. jellmoo (Posts: 704; Member since: 31 Oct 2011)
Then please, enlighten me oh wise and learned master. Please share with me how this magical score is calculated. Please give us some of your vaunted wisdom you've picked up from this "reading" you speak of. Us humble peasants cannot hope to understand things at your advanced level. We can only read the words that are here, and not the ones you are making up in your head.
17. thephonedude (Posts: 60; Member since: 27 Oct 2012)
Here you go knave,http://www.phonearena.com/howd
oweratenow begone! Or else you shall be banished to the depths of the dungeon!
19. jellmoo (Posts: 704; Member since: 31 Oct 2011)
Alas good sir, that still doth not explain overmuch.
A device that benchmarks higher, comes with what they measure as a great screen and great battery life and half the price of competition is scoring lower than said competition.
There doth need to be a better explanation.
11. o0Exia0o (Posts: 428; Member since: 01 Feb 2013)
Your right the author of this review just seemed to throw out a number with out thinking about it. The great battery, great screen, the through the roof benchmarks all at a crazy low price and then there is this crazy invite system making it next to impossible to actually buy one....I personally would have given it a lower score. Just my 2 cents though!
20. jellmoo (Posts: 704; Member since: 31 Oct 2011)
Should availability be taken into account though? It's an honest question. Are we grading the overall ability and quality of the device, or should something like limited availability be taken into account i n the final score? Was it with devices like the Nexus 4 and 5, which had their own availability issues?
29. o0Exia0o (Posts: 428; Member since: 01 Feb 2013)
Yes I do believe that availability should factor in to a devices rating. I will agree that there have been some problems with the launches and availability of Nexus devices but it has not been on the scale that One Plus has. Also when a Nexus device is launched it is available for order to anyone to order and just because the initial stock sells out does not mean that anyone who did not get in on the first batch will not be able to order one. I could go on the playstore right now and order a Nexus 5. Can you order a One Plus One right now (without an invite)?
6. Grenmad (Posts: 11; Member since: 06 Jun 2014)
Hated this phone marketing gimmick until I got my invite yesterday and ordered one lol.
7. ryan5609 (Posts: 99; Member since: 01 Nov 2011)
Ordered 2 OnePlus phones yesterday (dont ask me how, glitch on their part) going to keep one and sell the other. I hated, and still hate their marketing gimmick, and the way they went about selling phones. Glad they finally eased up a bit on the invites and finally started handing them out to early forum members. Looking forward to getting the device, just worried about the size, coming from a Nexus 5. I'll give it a few days, but if it is too big for my liking, I'll keep my Nexus and hope the Nexus 6 isn't quite as large.
22. jove39 (Posts: 1330; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)
OPO is larger than N5...but feels comfortable in hand...if small phones is your thing...you probably won't like it just because of size. sandstone back cover is good...no need to worry about finger prints...and also it doesn't slip from hand.
So far best features I liked in OPO over N5 are excellent audio playback quality and battery backup. And ofcourse, it comes pre-installed with CM 11S...you'll have a lot to play with.
One gripe - If you try to use iPhone headphones with OPO it's mic won't work.
45. ferraribrain (Posts: 1; Member since: 16 Nov 2014)
i am not satisfied with the size other. my company gave me an iphone 6, which is compatible with our servers and client inputs. did you sell it. i just got mine november 16, 2014. where did you put it. i used craigs list; no takers.
8. refillable (Posts: 673; Member since: 10 Mar 2014)
If not for the 5.5 inches and it's availability, I would pretty much say it's the best of H1 2014. However as there are too much gimmicks, It's not.
12. Arte-8800 (banned) (Posts: 4562; Member since: 13 Mar 2014)
Is much better, with class prestige materials
21. Neo_Huang (Posts: 718; Member since: 06 Dec 2013)
The Oppo Find 7's screen sucks, has lower benchmark scores, and much lower battery life.
14. Arte-8800 (banned) (Posts: 4562; Member since: 13 Mar 2014)
So this is a rooted handset?
With CM11 Rom
So we can tinker with the Cpu, Gpu, voltage settings?
15. vuyonc (Posts: 385; Member since: 24 Feb 2014)
B-b-but this deserved like a 9.5. The phone practically doesn't exist b-b-b-but it so kills these flagships.
26. Saamic (Posts: 119; Member since: 20 Feb 2012)
I'm wondering how its camera compares to the G3's
27. brasstax (Posts: 144; Member since: 16 Apr 2014)
Looking at the size comparison - Can't help realizing that LG has done an absolutely incredible job of keeping the dimensions down. It looks positively tiny in comparison to the other 3 phones. If I didn't know my stuff, I can easily think that it's got the smallest screen size of the bunch, when in fact, only the note 3 has a slightly larger screen.
LG deserve more appreciation than they are currently getting. People croon endlessly about the metal clad m8 or the glass & metal iPhone, but doesn't managing size better, also fall into excellent design & build department?
28. Edmund (Posts: 656; Member since: 13 Jul 2012)
The camera is absolute rubbish (or at least, the algorithms being implmented are). I feel sorry for anyone that would fork out money on this phone, aven if it is ridiculously affordable. I would imagine that compromises and/or sacrifices where made left, right and centre in an attempt to keep the costs low.
31. pubbaa (Posts: 21; Member since: 13 Mar 2012)
by the time this becomes readily available other manufacturers would have released even better phones, apart fro the marketing and the fact this really a "oppo" ,end of the day this is just another chinese brand...i was hyped for this but...now I'm not sure..
34. SanderBelaen (Posts: 9; Member since: 06 May 2014)
What icon pack is he using?
Or is it a cyanogenmod theme?
40. Chris.P (Posts: 309; Member since: 27 Jun 2013)
CyanogenMod, yes. There are plenty of options in this regard, though.
36. platformwars (Posts: 82; Member since: 14 Sep 2012)
Why is there no video for the review? i prefer watching videos to reading the full thing. Did you not have the phone and copied the review from somewhere else PA?
Please release a video.
39. beedeezy14 (Posts: 12; Member since: 17 Dec 2013)
I ordered mine yesterday. I'm an early supporter.
43. braulio_rj (Posts: 1; Member since: 30 Jan 2014)
Hello! Is there someone could send me an invitation to buy this piece of heaven? Or at least where I can get one? Thank you!
44. a1369366 (Posts: 25; Member since: 24 Aug 2014)
sometime, i really WONDER how much the reviewer got paid to do the review....
xiaomi, 10 time easier to get, and no one did a review here at PA.
1+1, impossible to get, and the reviewer got one with no issue?