Latest!

OnePlus 8T review: a significant upgrade

OnePlus usually launches its flagship smartphones in the first half of the year, followed by their respective ‘T’ variants in the second half. This year the brand launched only the OnePlus 8T, which arrives as a stop-gap model between the OnePlus 8 and 8 Pro.

Also read: Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro review: a worthy competitor to the OnePlus 8T

The OnePlus 8T offers several upgrades over the OnePlus 8, but misses out on some features of the Pro model. The highlighting features of the new flagship include a 120Hz display and 65W fast charging, the latter a first on a OnePlus phone. I have been using the phone for a while now, and here’s my review.

Design and display

  • 160.7 x 74.1 x 8.4mm, 188g
  • 6.55-inch FHD+, 120Hz, sRGB, Display P3, Gorilla Glass

While last year’s OnePlus 7T (review) had an unusually large circular camera setup, the OnePlus 8T features a rectangular camera module. OnePlus is offering the 8T in Aquamarine Green and Lunar Silver colours, of which I received the former. The Aquamarine Green colour reflects green and blue hues depending on the angle of light hitting it. Additionally, the finish is somewhere between matte and glossy, which feels premium and keeps smudges at bay. However, I did find the overall design of the smartphone to be a little uninspired and boring.

The OnePlus 8T has a 6.55-inch Fluid AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate. This is an upgrade over the OnePlus 8’s 90Hz panel. The screen offers a resolution of 2,400 x 1,080 pixels and a peak brightness of 1,100 nits. The combination of an AMOLED panel, FHD+ screen resolution and high refresh rate makes for a smooth and sharp viewing experience on the OnePlus 8T.

The display has sharp and vibrant colours with impressive sunlight legibility. The AMOLED screen comes with support for HDR10+ and Widevine L1 certification for high-resolution video streaming. During my stint with the smartphone, I binge-watched The Queen’s Gambit on Netflix and the content looked sharp with good colours.

Cameras

  • 48MP Sony IMX586 f/1.7 primary, 16MP f/2.2 ultra-wide, 5MP macro, 2MP monochrome rear cameras
  • 16MP Sony IMX471 f/2.4 selfie camera

The primary camera on the OnePlus 8T captures impressive images during the day with ample details, accurate exposure and balanced dynamic range. The AI scene-recognition also works quite well, however, I noticed an aggressive saturation boost in some shots. The camera captures decent pictures after dark with minimal noise. The dedicated Nightscape mode works well to improve details and dynamic range.

The ultra-wide lens is useful for capturing landscape shots, but I was disappointed by the lack of detail, despite it being a 16-megapixel unit. The macro lens captures sharp images with decent colours. The portrait mode is also pretty good and was able to detect edges accurately.

Coming to the front camera, the 16-megapixel shooter clicks good selfies in daylight and also retains natural skin tones. However, the camera tends to oversharpen images and the edge detection in portrait mode is a bit fuzzy.

Performance, software and battery

  • Android 11-based OxygenOS 11
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 865
  • 8GB + 128GB, 12GB + 256GB
  • 4,500mAh battery, 65W fast charging

Thanks to the Snapdragon 865 SoC at its core, the OnePlus 8T sailed through pretty much every task I threw at it. The presence of 12GB RAM ensured faster app opening and closing, multitasking, and animations. I did notice heavy apps in the background getting killed due to the aggressive RAM management though.

The smartphone opened PUBG Mobile in HDR graphics and Extreme frame rate settings in our gaming review. The gameplay was pretty fast and smooth without any stutters.

The OnePlus 8T boots the latest OxygenOS 11 based on Android 11, which brings an interface overhaul that’s optimised for one-handed use. In native apps, the layout is pushed down so that it’s easily accessible using one hand. Additionally, the new software brings the Always-on ambient display feature, new OnePlus Sans font and a redesigned notification panel.

OnePlus has also introduced a new Work and Life mode, where users can set details like Wi-Fi, address, preferred apps, and email accounts, among others for work and personal setups. Once configured, users can easily toggle between the work and life mode from the notification panel. OxygenOS 11 is a clean software with next to no bloatware, which is a plus.

The smartphone features a 4,500mAh battery with Warp Charge 65 fast charging technology. With the bundled charger, the OnePlus 8T goes from zero to 100 percent in just 40 minutes. Unfortunately, wireless charging isn’t supported. In our gaming review, the battery level dropped by 10 percent over 40 minutes. In my day-to-day experience, I was able to get an entire day of usage from a full charge, which is commendable considering that the always-on display and 120Hz refresh rate were enabled.

Bottomline

Starting at Rs 42,999, the OnePlus 8T has enough upgrades to be a worthy successor to the OnePlus 8. The smartphone is a solid all-rounder with a 120Hz display, power-packed performance, decent battery backup, 65W fast charging, and the latest software. Unfortunately, it doesn’t do justice when it comes to the cameras, which is where the Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro (review) shines. The Mi 10T Pro is Rs 3,000 cheaper at Rs 39,999, and offers a more powerful 108-megapixel rear camera setup. The smartphone also has a 144Hz display, albeit with an LCD panel.

With the OnePlus 8T, the OnePlus 8 has become redundant, unless OnePlus drops the price significantly. In sum, if you want a OnePlus flagship but can’t afford to spend Rs 55,000 on the OnePlus 8 Pro, the OnePlus 8T is the obvious choice.

Pricebaba’s rating: 8 / 10

What works:

  • Smooth 120Hz display
  • Powerful processor
  • Clean software
  • Superfast 65W fast charging

What doesn’t:

  • Average ultra-wide camera
  • No wireless charging
Comments
Tags:
Abhiman Biswas

Abhiman is obsessed with all things tech. His hobbies include reading on his Kindle and clicking random pictures on his phone. His secret superpowers happen to be mixing great cocktails and lip reading. In his spare time, you are likely to find him cleaning his aquascape, researching new species of aquatic fishes and planning which aquatic plants to buy next.