OnePlus 5: 7 Things to Know About the 2017 Flagship Killer

OnePlus 5: 7 Things to Know About the 2017 Flagship Killer

The OnePlus 5 is out following months of leaks and hype surrounding it. Successor to the OnePlus 3/3T, the OnePlus 5 is packed to the brim with top-notch internals including a dual-camera setup at the rear, a Snapdragon 835 chipset, and 6/8GB RAM.

While you can read all about the specs and internals of the OnePlus 5 in our launch article, there’s more to the handset which the company did not mention while unveiling the handset earlier today. These are all the little things that make the OnePlus 5 a great handset. What are they? Read below to find out.

Bluetooth 5.0

The OnePlus 5 is the second smartphone to be announced that comes with Bluetooth 5.0, with the Galaxy S8 being the first. Like with every new version of Bluetooth, the latest version of this low-power wireless communication protocol offers up to 4x more range, up to 8x more bandwidth that should lead to better audio quality, and up to 2x transfer speeds.

Samsung’s Galaxy S8, the only other smartphone in the market with Bluetooth 5.0, uses the higher bandwidth offered by the wireless protocol to be able to simultaneously connect to two different Bluetooth devices and stream audio to them at the same time. It also allows one to individually control the volume level of a Bluetooth speaker independently of the phone’s medial volume.

Sadly, while the OnePlus 5 does come with Bluetooth 5.0, it does not come with any of the features mentioned above.

No OIS

The OnePlus 5 features a dual camera setup at the rear that is substantially better than the 16MP shooter found on the OnePlus 3/3T. While the primary camera still features a 16MP Sony sensor, it now comes with a much wider f/1.7 aperture. Sadly, the wider aperture and better camera sensor have led OnePlus to sacrifice OIS on the OnePlus 5.

The faster shutter speed should allow the OnePlus 5 to capture moving objects better but the lack of OIS does put it at a significant disadvantage compared to other 2017 flagships like the Galaxy S8, LG G6, and HTC U11.

The secondary 20MP telephoto lens also lacks OIS which results in it capturing less-than-usable-photos in low-light scenarios.

Telephoto Lens

The dual camera setup at the rear of the OnePlus 5 remains among its key features. The primary 16MP f/1.7 shooter on the phone is coupled with a 20MP f/2.6 shooter to offer a camera setup and experience similar to that of the iPhone 7 Plus. The telephoto lens has a bigger focal length than the primary shooter that allows the OnePlus 5 to offer a certain degree of optical zoom. This approach is similar to what Apple took with the iPhone 7 Plus last year. Disappointingly enough though, the OnePlus 5’s telephoto lens has a 40mm focal length — quite a fair bit lower than the 56mm telephoto lens found on the iPhone 7 Plus. The lower focal length means the OnePlus 5’s optical zoom reach will not be similar to that of the iPhone 7 Plus. Perhaps this is why the company never mentioned anything about the 5 featuring up to 2x optical zoom similar to that of the iPhone 7 Plus while unveiling the device.

On the plus side, the telephoto lens of the OnePlus 5 does allow it to offer an iPhone 7 Plus-like Portrait mode that can capture photos with a DLSR-like bokeh effect.

Sapphire And Ceramic

To protect that dual camera setup at the rear from scratches and scuffs, OnePlus has used a sapphire crystal lens cover on it. Scratches on the camera lens can wreak havoc with the imaging performance of a device, so its nice to OnePlus going with a sapphire lens cover for the dual camera on the OnePlus 5.

Similarly, the fingerprint scanner on the front of the OnePlus 5 is now made of ceramic instead of plastic which makes it feel better to touch and press.

No Waterproofing

In a bid to keep the price of the phone under $500 and include a dual-camera setup on it, OnePlus had to sacrifice including any kind of waterproofing on the handset. Considering how all flagships launched in 2017 are water-resistant to a certain degree, it’s disappointing to see the flagship killer OnePlus 5 lack any kind of waterproofing.

Midnight Black

Last year, OnePlus had launched a limited edition of the OnePlus 3 in Midnight Black color. This year, the company is offering the color as a standard option on the OnePlus 5. It is also offering a Slate Gray color option for the device. Sadly though, the Midnight Black color of the OnePlus 5 is only available in the 8GB RAM/128GB variant of the device, with the base 6GB RAM variant being available in Slate Gray color.

Improved Vibration Motor

Almost all phones from OnePlus have been criticised for their weak and loud vibration motor. The OnePlus community has long been complaining to the company to include better and silent vibration motors in its handset. With the OnePlus 5, the company is finally paying attention to what its community wants and has gone ahead and included an improved vibration motor on the handset. In the demo shown by the company while unveiling the handset, the vibration motor on the OnePlus 5 was a fair bit quieter while also being stronger than the one found inside the OnePlus 3.

So, if you have hated the vibration motor on your OnePlus 3, you will be glad to know that the 5 comes with a vastly superior one.


So, what are your thoughts on the OnePlus 5? Impressed? Disappointed? Do you plan on buying one?

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