Following the massive success that was the OnePlus 6, OnePlus has now brought the OnePlus 6T (starts at Rs. 37,999) worldwide. Much like other T-series devices from the company, the OnePlus 6T is a minor upgrade over its predecessor, bringing just a couple of new features in almost the same chassis as before.
Starting at Rs. 37,999 here in India, the OnePlus 6T is, once again, a little bit more expensive than the last smartphone from the company, but is it worth the upgrade? Well, I had the chance to use the device as my daily driver a week ahead of the launch and I’m here to answer just that.
OnePlus 6T Specifications
As I mentioned earlier, the OnePlus 6T is just a minor upgrade over the OnePlus 6 and it pretty much has the same hardware as its predecessor, except for a few minor changes here and there. So, lets take a look at the complete specifications of the OnePlus 6T before we dive further into the review:
|Dimensions and Weight||157.5 x 74.8 x 8.2mm, 185g|
|Display||6.41-inch Optic AMOLED 2340x1080p, 19.5:9 aspect ratio, Gorilla Glass 6|
|Processor||Qualcomm Snapdragon 845|
|Rear Cameras||16MP+20MP f/1.7 with OIS and EIS|
|Front Camera||16MP f/2.0 with EIS|
|Battery||3,700mAh with fast charge (5V/4A)|
|Software||OxygenOS based on Android 9 Pie|
|Connectivity||802.11 a/b/g/n/ac 2x2MIMO dual band Wifi, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC, USB 2.0 Type-C|
|Sensors||In-display fingerprint, Hall, Accelerometer, Gyroscope, Proximity, Ambient Light, Electronic Compass|
|Colors||Mirror Black and Midnight Black|
What’s In the Box
The OnePlus 6T comes in a standard looking white box from OnePlus, however, this time around the company has added a subtle marbled texture on the box. Inside, you’ll get the usual bunch of accessories that you’d expect from a device of this caliber, along with a few thoughtful additions, like a translucent case and a USB Type-C to 3.5 mm headphone jack dongle.
Here’s everything you’ll get within the retail packaging of the OnePlus 6T:
- OnePlus 6T
- 5V/4A charging brick
- USB Type-A to USB Type-C cable
- USB Type-C to 3.5 mm headphone jack dongle
- Translucent protective case
- SIM ejector tool
- OnePlus stickers
Design and Build Quality
In terms of design and build quality, OnePlus hasn’t changed a whole lot in the OnePlus 6T. Measuring in at 157.5 x 74.8 x 8.2 mm and weighing 185 g, the new smartphone is just a tad bit bigger and heavier than the OnePlus 6, which gave OnePlus the room to include a larger battery this time around. Up front, the device has a larger 6.41-inch Optic AMOLED display with a smaller waterdrop style notch, with minimal bezels on the sides and a thinner chin at the bottom.
The single front-facing camera is neatly hidden within the small notch, along with the three-in-one ambient/distance/RGB sensor, and the earpiece has been moved a little up north and now it resides within the thin top bezel. The back of the device remains pretty much the same as the OnePlus 6, with a glossy Mirror Black finish (the device will also be available in a Midnight Black finish) that is an absolute fingerprint magnet and the same vertically oriented dual camera setup with a dual tone flash underneath.
The fingerprint scanner, however, has now been moved from the back and resides underneath the display up front, but I’ll get to that in a bit. The device has the same curved glass back, which feels really comfortable to hold and the button placement also remains unchanged. The power button, along with the alert slider, are still located on the right edge of the device, while the volume rocker, along with the SIM card tray, are housed on the left edge.
The top of the device is devoid of any ports and just houses the secondary noise canceling microphone, while the bottom is dominated by the USB Type-C port and two sets of speaker grills on either side, one of which is just there to add symmetry and hides the primary microphone within. There’s no 3.5mm headphone jack on the OnePlus 6T and the company claims that it has been removed to make room for the in-display fingerprint scanner on the device (despite fans clearly wanting it the other way round). Build quality remains top-notch and the device feels really premium in the hand, which is expected from any smartphone in this price range.
All in all, the OnePlus 6T hasn’t strayed too far away from its predecessor in terms of design and build quality, and if you liked the look and feel of the OnePlus 6, you’ll definitely like the OnePlus 6T as well. The missing headphone jack will surely disappoint a number of prospective buyers, but considering that the Bluetooth and USB Type-C accessories market is quite ripe this late in 2018, not many users will be turned away from the OnePlus 6T just because of the lack of a headphone jack. Oh and despite removing another port from the device, OnePlus hasn’t included any IP rating this time around either and it still remains just “daily water-resistant”.
The smaller waterdrop style notch on the OnePlus 6T leaves more room for display on the device and therefore, the smartphone packs a larger 6.41-inch display this time around. It’s the same Optic AMOLED panel that the company used in the previous device, which has a resolution of 2340 x 1080p, a pixel density of 402ppi and a 19.5:9 aspect ratio.
The display is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 6, which means that it won’t scratch easily, but I’d still advice you to use a screen protector to be on the safer side. Quality wise, the display remains unchanged – the color reproduction is still as good, the viewing angles are on point and the display gets fairly bright. On top of that, OnePlus’ software still gives you the freedom to adjust the color calibration of the display to match your specific taste. The company has also included Night Mode and Reading Mode settings for the display, which is definitely a handy addition.
I liked the display on the OnePlus 6, so it’s quite natural that I’d like the display on the OnePlus 6T as much. Add to that the smaller notch and consequently, more room to play with, I’m definitely a fan. Granted, the display on the OnePlus 6T isn’t a great as the ones you’d find on Samsung’s own flagship devices, but then again, there’s a considerable price difference between the two and for the price, the OnePlus 6T is just killing it.
The OnePlus 6T features a single bottom firing speaker which sounds pretty much the same as the one on the OnePlus 6. It’s loud, clear, and punchy, but it suffers from the same problem that plagues all bottom firing speakers – it gets muffled quite easily. The audio quality is pretty decent and I have absolutely no qualms about its performance.
Audio from the newly relocated earpiece is definitely a bit different however. Since the earpiece is located within a slight recess in the top bezel, it doesn’t quite rest on the ear like the earpiece on the OnePlus 6, which meant that I had to place the phone at a slight angle to hear the audio clearly. The audio quality from the earpiece is pretty decent in any case and I got used to the new position within just a couple of hours of use.
Camera hardware on the OnePlus 6T remains unchanged and it still packs in the same 16MP f/1.7 + 20MP f/1.7 dual camera setup on the back and a 16MP f/2.0 selfie shooter up front. The rear camera setup is stabilized by both OIS and EIS, while the front camera just has EIS. Enough about the specifications though, lets take a look at some of the camera samples:
While the OnePlus 6T features the same camera sensors as its predecessors, OnePlus claims that it has enhanced camera performance this time around using a new algorithm that automatically adjusts both the front and rear cameras to capture better images of commonly photographed scenes and objects. In my testing, however, the results were kind of a mixed bag.
- Performance in Artificial/Good Light
In good lighting conditions, the OnePlus 6T is capable of taking some great shots with a good amount of detail, great color reproduction and decent dynamic range, but its performance is quite inconsistent. Images clicked in the same spot with the same lighting conditions just a few seconds apart look quite different, with one featuring a good amount of detail, while the other looking rather soft. Just check out these sample images and see for yourself:
- Performance in Low Light
Performance in low light conditions is rather unremarkable and equally inconsistent. While at times, the device manages to capture enough light and details, on other occasions it just doesn’t manage to capture enough. The dynamic range in low-light shots isn’t all that great either and even while using the new Nightscape feature, the images barely look any different (more on that in the dedicated camera review). Just take a look at some sample shots taken in low light conditions:
- Portrait Mode Performance
Portrait mode performance of the OnePlus 6T is yet again a mixed bag. While some images look really great and have good subject separation, other don’t look quite as good, with significantly less detail. The edge detection is better than the OnePlus 6, but because of its inconsistent performance, I can’t really be sure if 6T is actually any better overall. Here are some sample portrait shots:
- Selfie Performance
The front 16MP shooter is pretty capable and takes some really great selfies in both good and low light conditions. There’s an ample amount of detail, good dynamic range and decent color reproduction – perfect for social media use. The OnePlus 6T’s selfie shooter also features a software enabled portrait mode which will allow you to click some decent portrait selfies. While the subject separation isn’t as good as with the rear cameras, the images produced are totally usable for social media. Just take a look at these sample shots:
The new OnePlus 6T comes with support for 4K@60fps video capture and in my use the videos captured by the device look pretty great, but they’re a bit wobbly, even after the dual OIS and EIS stabilization. Same is the case with videos captured at 1080p@60fps, which look crisp but unstable. Here are some sample videos:
The device also has slow mo video feature which supports 480 fps video at 720p and 240 fps video at 1080p. Much like the OnePlus 6, the OnePlus 6T also allows you to capture up to 1 minute of slow motion video and gives you the opportunity to choose which part of the video you want to slow down. The videos captured using the slow-mo feature on the OnePlus 6T look cool, but only if there’s ample amount of light.
OnePlus 6T vs OnePlus 6 vs Pixel 2 XL vs Poco F1: Camera Performance
When it comes to pricing and comparison, the OnePlus 6T is in a league of its own and there aren’t any devices in this price range. So we were forced to compare it with the older OnePlus 6, the Pixel 2 XL (which somewhat falls in this price bracket during sales), and the Poco F1 (which offers the best value for money in this performance segment).
As you’d expect, the Pixel 2 XL easily beats all the other devices when it comes to the camera performance. The OnePlus 6 and the OnePlus 6T go neck and neck, with the older phone managing to click better images in some scenarios. The Poco F1 unsurprisingly takes the last spot, but it still manages to deliver some decent images, which is quite commendable considering its price.
To begin with, lets take a look at some sample images I took using the aforementioned devices in good natural light:
As you can probably tell, the Pixel 2 XL delivers the best images with great color accuracy, a stunning amount of detail and good dynamic range each and every time. The OnePlus 6T and the OnePlus 6 also manage to capture decent shots, but both the devices tend to turn up the saturation quite a bit. The OnePlus 6T is also a tad bit inconsistent when it comes to camera performance, which means that while some images are really detailed, others are out of focus and blurry.
Next up, lets take a look at some low light shots captured by the four devices, outdoors and indoors:
Once again, the Pixel 2 XL shines in the low light test, delivering exceptional images with little to no noise. Both the OnePlus 6T and the OnePlus 6 are kinda inconsistent, so the resulting shots are either pretty great or just plain bad. The low light images clicked by the Poco F1 are consistent, but they’re consistently average, which is why it takes the last spot, once again.
Now lets take a look at some portrait mode shots captured by the devices:
Even though the Pixel 2 XL has a single rear facing camera, it manages to click better images than both the OnePlus devices. The images clicked with the Pixel 2 XL have great subject separation, a decent background blur and consistent edge detection. Portrait mode shots captured by the OnePlus devices are usable, but they’re not as good as the ones captured by the Pixel 2. On top of that, the OnePlus devices also tend to smooth out the details in some images, which isn’t all that great. The Poco F1, well, is still clicking the worst images out of the bunch, but they’re still quite usable.
Finally, lets focus on the selfie performance of the devices:
All the four devices manage to click some decent selfies, with the Pixel 2 XL, unsurprisingly, delivering the best results. The OnePlus 6 and the OnePlus 6T have similar results, but I kinda prefer the images clicked by the OnePlus 6T. The Poco F1’s selfie shooter isn’t able to keep up with the other three devices and comes in last, yet again.
OnePlus devices are known for their exceptional performance and the new OnePlus 6T is no different. The device packs in a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 SoC, coupled with up to 8GB RAM and up to 256GB of internal storage. I received the 8GB/128GB variant for the purpose of this review and performance wise, I didn’t notice any issue with the device.
The OnePlus 6T can handle everything you can possibly throw at it and it even manages to deliver decent results in synthetic benchmarks. In my testing, the device managed to score 2415 and 9015 in Geekbench 4’s single-core and multi-core tests, 4726 in 3DMark’s Sling Shot Extreme OpenGL test, 3850 in 3DMark’s Sling Shot Extreme Vulkan test, and an impressive 294156 in AnTuTu.
I also tested a couple of popular demanding games on the device and in managed to breeze through each one of them without any hitch whatsoever. The game ran PUBG Mobile, Shadowgun Legends, and Asphalt 9 exceptionally well at the highest graphics, and even managed to keep the games running in the background, allowing me to quickly switch between games. All-in-all, the OnePlus 6T offers top notch performance for the price and if you’re looking for a device which offers great performance then you won’t have to think twice before zeroing in on the OnePlus 6T.
The new OnePlus 6T runs OnePlus’ OxygenOS 9 based on Android 9 Oreo out of the box and the software experience is just fantastic. There’s virtually no bloatware, the UI feels really close to the stock Android UI and there are several handy additions which I’ll definitely be using on a daily basis.
Being a nearly bezel-less device, the OnePlus 6T also brings with it intuitive navigation gestures that feel really fluid and I got used to them within hours of using the device. While the full-screen navigation gestures are also available on the older OnePlus 6, the OnePlus 6T brings with it a couple of more gestures, with the recent app switching gesture easily being my favorite.
OnePlus has also included a bunch of Easter eggs within the UI this time around and while some of them might seem a bit gimmicky, I do like the fact that OnePlus is making an effort to develop a more user-friendly and fun UI. Being a OnePlus 5 user myself, I felt right at home using the OnePlus 6T and I can blindly recommend the device to anyone looking for a great software experience.
Battery Life and Charging
One of the most significant changes on the OnePlus 6T is its larger 3,700mAh battery which delivers exceptional battery life. Add that to OnePlus’ epic fast charge capabilities and you’ve got a device that not only lasts long, but also charges up rather quickly. In my testing, the included 5V/4A fast charger managed to charge up the device from 10 percent to 100 percent in just 1 hour and 15 minutes, which is more or less the same as the OnePlus 6, despite the larger battery. Quite impressive, don’t you think?
Battery life is also pretty great and the device managed to easily last me one and a half days with moderate use, delivering a screen-on-time of almost three hours. With heavy use, which included watching an absolute ton of HD videos on YouTube and playing several games of PUBG Mobile, the device easily lasted me a day with a screen-on-time just shy of 7 hours and 30 minutes. I was blown away by the battery life and I have to give props to OnePlus for optimizing standby power consumption so well.
OnePlus has managed to pack in most modern connectivity options on the OnePlus 6T and, except for the missing headphone jack, users won’t find the device lacking in any aspect. The device comes with support for 2×2 MIMO 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac dual-band (2.4/5GHz) WiFi, Bluetooth 5.0 with aptX and aptX HD support, NFC, and GPS, GLONASS, BeiDou, Galileo for navigation.
The device also has dual SIM support, but it doesn’t include a microSD card slot for expansion. However, considering the fact that the base variant now offers 128GB of storage, the lack of a microSD card slot shouldn’t be a major issue. There’s a single USB 2.0 Type-C port for charging and data transfer, which can also be used to plug in USB Type-C earphones for audio output. I do wish OnePlus hadn’t removed the headphone jack from the device, but I kinda understand the company’s reason for the same and I agree that a larger battery is definitely more valuable than a headphone jack.
OnePlus 6T: Should You Buy?
Priced starting at Rs. 37,999, the new OnePlus 6T is definitely a must buy for anyone who’s looking for a smartphone that offers premium build quality, a stunning display, great performance and even better battery life. On top of that, the device offers the best value for money.
However, in case you already have the OnePlus 6, then it won’t really make sense for you to upgrade to the OnePlus 6T as most of the software features introduced with the OnePlus 6T will make their way to the older device. Also, in case you’re looking for great camera performance, then the OnePlus 6T might not be the best bet. I’m not saying that it has a bad camera, it’s just not as good as some other devices in the market which are available for almost the same price during sales.
- Premium build quality
- Great display with a tiny, unobtrusive notch
- Top notch performance
- Amazing battery life with fast charging
- Fast in-display fingerprint scanner
- Good software experience
- Value for money
- No headphone jack
- Inconsistent camera performance
- In-display fingerprint scanner slows down while using custom wallpapers
OnePlus 6T Review: Best Value for Money Flagship
That rounds up our review of the all new OnePlus 6T. Even though the device is a minor upgrade over the OnePlus 6, the OnePlus 6T is definitely the best value for money flagship in the market today.
The smartphone stacks up quite well against significantly more expensive smartphones in a variety of different categories, giving users a stunning display, great battery life, an in-display fingerprint scanner and premium build quality.
In terms of performance and user experience, the OnePlus 6T is unbeatable at the price and I can blindly recommend it to anyone looking for a new flagship. However, the OnePlus 6T does have its own fair share of shortcomings. Its camera performance is quite inconsistent, there’s no headphone jack and no microSD card slot for expansion.
If those things are a deal breaker for you, then you should probably consider looking at other options like the older OnePlus 6 if it’s still available because the upgrades that the OnePlus 6T (starts at Rs. 37,999)offers aren’t all that significant, the Poco F1 (Rs 20,990) if you’re on a tight budget but still want a device which packs flagship specifications, or the Pixel 2 XL (Rs. 45,499) if you want the best camera performance on your smartphone but at a slightly higher price, and if bone stock Android is your jam. You can also consider the recently launched LG G7 ThinQ (Rs 39,999), which is another flagship that offers great value for money, a better display, the same SoC, a headphone jack, and an IP rating for water resistance.
Buy the OnePlus 6T from Amazon (starts at Rs. 37,999)