China’s OnePlus launched its new flagship smartphone today, confirming details that have been leaking out for a number of weeks already.
The OnePlus 5 represents the company’s sixth device since the original OnePlus One launch back in 2014, and follows the OnePlus 2 and OnePlus X (both 2015) and the OnePlus 3 and OnePlus 3T (both 2016).
It’s been clear for at least a month that the camera on the OnePlus 5 would be a key focus for the device. Indeed, OnePlus previously revealed it was working with photography software and benchmarking organization DxO for the handset. And two weeks ago the company confirmed, via a tweet, that the OnePlus 5 would have a dual lens camera — a growing trend among smartphone makers.
— OnePlus (@oneplus) June 8, 2017
In the two weeks since, all manner of leaks have emerged about the OnePlus 5’s specs, with most agreeing that it would be powered by Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 835 processor — the same one that powers Samsung’s latest Galaxy devices.
At a pop-up launch event in London, VentureBeat was given the lowdown on everything you need to know about its latest phone, including specs, price, and when you can get your hands on one of these handsets.
OnePlus 5: the need-to-knows
Today’s launch comes seven months after the company’s last flagship, the OnePlus 3T, a device that went to market just five months after the previous flagship, the OnePlus 3. OnePlus has effectively launched three flagship phones in the space of 12 months.
So what has changed this time around?
As expected, the camera played a major starring role in the OnePlus 5 launch today, with confirmation arriving that the 20mp and 16mp duo of lenses underpins the handset’s official slogan: “Dual camera, clearer photos.”
We can also now confirm that the OnePlus 5 has become one of just a handful of handsets to sport the new Snapdragon 835 processor, including the aforementioned Samsung Galaxy S8/S8 Plus as well as the HTC U11.
Additionally, the OnePlus 5 has been scythed in terms of girth, down from the 7.4mm thickness of the OnePlus 3T to 7.25mm. But the device is a little longer, now at 154.2mm compared to 152.7mm, and a little narrower at 74.1mm versus 74.7mm.
Elsewhere, the OnePlus 5 continues on a similar path to the OnePlus 3T, with a 5.5-inch display and two storage versions — 64GB (slate gray only) and 128GB (midnight black only). But this time around, OnePlus has elected to give the 128GB version a whopping 8GB of RAM, while electing to keep the 64GB incarnation at 6GB of RAM. The company has also included a 3,300mAh battery, down from the 3,400mAh battery that was packed into the OnePlus 3T — but OnePlus promises up to 20 percent more battery life due to optimizations made elsewhere.
Other points worth noting: The OnePlus 5 has bucked a growing trend by including a standard 3.5mm headphone jack, but it still has the physical alert slider that lets users customize which alerts come through, a fingerprint scanner on the front, and the Dash Charging functionality that promises half-a-day’s juice in around half an hour of charging. It also comes with a dual nano SIM slot.
Then there’s pricing: For comparison purposes, the OnePlus 3T went to market at $439 for the 64GB version and $479 for the 128GB incarnation, and pricing this time around is roughly in line with that, except the 64GB this time around is $479 and the 128GB version has been bumped up to $539.
OnePlus is opening presales under what it calls an “early drop” today, but official sales don’t kick off until June 27 in North America and in Europe. The device is also launching in mainland China, Hong Kong, and India, though no launch details have been given for those markets.