OnePlus 9R hands-on review

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Introduction

Déjà vu: The illusion of having previously experienced something actually being encountered for the first time.

That’s what it feels like reviewing the OnePlus 9R. Except it’s not an illusion. We have reviewed this phone once before, just six months ago. Back then it was known as the OnePlus 8T.

OnePlus 9R hands-on review

It’s not often that we see a manufacturer launch pretty much the same phone twice in a row, but that does seem to be what’s happening here. Calling the OnePlus 9R similar to the OnePlus 8T would be an understatement. For all intents and purposes, they are almost exactly the same phone.

OnePlus 9R specs at a glance:

  • Body: 161.0×74.1×8.4mm, 189g; Glass front (Gorilla Glass 5), glass back (Gorilla Glass 5), aluminum frame.
  • Display: 6.55″ Fluid AMOLED, 120Hz, HDR10+, 1080x2400px resolution, 20:9 aspect ratio, 402ppi; Always-on display.
  • Chipset: Qualcomm SM8250-AC Snapdragon 870 5G (7 nm): Octa-core (1×3.2 GHz Kryo 585 & 3×2.42 GHz Kryo 585 & 4×1.80 GHz Kryo 585); Adreno 650.
  • Memory: 128GB 8GB RAM, 256GB 12GB RAM; UFS 3.1.
  • OS/Software: Android 11, OxygenOS 11.
  • Rear camera: Wide (main): 48 MP, f/1.7, 26mm, 1/2.0″, 0.8µm, PDAF, OIS; Ultra wide angle: 16 MP, f/2.2, 14mm, 123˚, 1/3.6″, 1.0µm; Macro: 5 MP, f/2.4; Depth: 2 MP, f/2.4.
  • Front camera: 16 MP, f/2.4, (wide), 1/3.06″, 1.0µm.
  • Video capture: Rear camera: 4K@30/60fps, 1080p@30/60/240fps, Auto HDR, gyro-EIS; Front camera: 1080p@30fps, gyro-EIS.
  • Battery: 4500mAh; Fast charging 65W, 1-100% in 39 min (advertised).
  • Misc: Fingerprint reader (under display, optical); NFC.

But there are a few differences. Perhaps the most important one that you should concern yourself with is the fact that the OnePlus 9R is currently exclusive to India, with no announced plans to release it elsewhere. Of course, the real conundrum is why is any country getting this phone, but we’ll get to that later. Also, the OnePlus 9R is launching at a lower price than the OnePlus 8T did, starting at INR 39,999 versus the INR 43,999 of the OnePlus 8T.

The other differences are less meaningful. The OnePlus 9R runs on the new Snapdragon 870 instead of the 865. Calling it “new” is greatly exaggerating the situation, as it is essentially the same part as the 865 but with an overclock on the CPU and GPU. And finally, the OnePlus 9R has also received a slight facelift and comes in two new color options.

Is that enough for the OnePlus 9R to be a separate phone? We’ll just have to find out.

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