OnePlus 6 Hands-On: A Notched Improvement over OnePlus 5T

After making its international debut yesterday, OnePlus today launched the OnePlus 6 in India. The handset goes on sale in the country from May 21 for Amazon Prime members and on May 22nd for non-Prime members.

The OnePlus 6 comes around six months after the launch of the OnePlus 5T. OnePlus is known to work on a six-month upgrade cycle as it dishes out a new handset every six months that fixes the flaw of the previous phone.

OnePlus 6 Hands-On

With the OnePlus 6, the company has taken a similar approach and paid greater attention to speed and design.

Apart from the usual internal specifications bump, the OnePlus 6 comes with a 19:9 6.28-inch notched display at the front. The Optic AMOLED panel features an FHD+ resolution and despite the bump in screen size, the phone has the same footprint as its predecessor: the OnePlus 5T. This is due to the notched display. Unlike the iPhone X, the notched display is pretty small as well and its used to house the front 16MP camera and the usual bevy of sensors.

While OnePlus continues to use an Optic AMOLED panel on the OnePlus 6, its quality seems to have improved fromĀ the OnePlus 5T. This is definitely a welcome change as the full-screen display at the front means the OLED panel has to be extremely good to deliver that immersive experience.

Apart from the notched display, the highlight of the OnePlus 6 is its new glass design. There’s a thin film layer beneath the rear glass panel which helps refracts light and gives the phone its shiny and stealthy look. The rear glass is also curved from the edges to help increase its durability and ergonomics.

OnePlus uses Gorilla Glass 5 at the front and rear so the glass is less prone to shattering, though being a glass, it is a fingerprint magnet. Ultimately, this means that the only time your OnePlus 6 will be free of fingerprint and smudges is when it is in the box. As soon as you pick it up and start using it, it will turn into a fingerprint magnet in no time.

OnePlus has not been clear about it, but the OnePlus 6 is only “daily water resistant.” This means that while it can be used in light rains, you should not dunk it in water thinking it will survive the dip since it lacks any official IP certification.

OnePlus also unveiled the Avengers Edition of the OnePlus 6. The phone looks the same from the front, but the rear has some additional bells and whistles. Firstly, there’s an Avengers logo at the bottom of the device. The rear film has a textured look to it which gives the phone a very different look from the other regular variants of the device. The retail box of the OnePlus 6 Avengers Edition is also different from the regular version. It comes with an Iron Man case and other Avengers themed goodies. It will only be available in 8GB RAM + 256GB storage variant for Rs 44,999.

The display and design are truly the highlights of the OnePlus 6. I will reserve my judgment about other aspects of the device until my full review. While the rear camera has also been improved, I cannot comment on its performance yet as I have not had a chance to play with it extensively. I will, however, add that I did notice indoor photos coming out slightly better on the OnePlus 6 which can likely be attributed to OIS and the larger pixels the rear camera now comes with.

Another aspect of the OnePlus 6 that impressed me the most was OxygenOS. OnePlus says that they have further optimized OnePlus 6 to improve app load times, and it shows. The handset was able to open all the pre-installed apps extremely quick and even navigating around its UI felt extremely smooth. This can likely be attributed to the powerful Snapdragon 845 chipset, the light nature of OxygenOS, and the oodles amountĀ of RAM it packs.

From my initial hands-on with the OnePlus 6, I did come away very impressed with it. However, it is more of an upgrade for OnePlus 3/3T users, and OnePlus 5/5T owners should hold out for the OnePlus 6T or even the OnePlus 7. For more of our thoughts on the OnePlus 6, wait for our full review.

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