It’s a story as old as time – or as old as the concept of “flagship killers” at least. OnePlus may have gotten its start by offering more for less, but its phones changed gradually over the years, which brings us to today.
The OnePlus 8 and 8 Pro can’t be called flagship killers. That title hasn’t applied to the company’s phones for a couple of generations now, but they still offered great value for money. Today we ask you if that’s still true.
The OnePlus 8 Pro starts at $900/€900/£800. That’s the MSRP of the Galaxy S20 5G, for example, but even two minutes of shopping around will find you a better price. You can even find an S20+ in this price range. And the price of the Samsungs will continue to fall while OnePlus has historically taken Apple’s stance of very rarely dropping the price of its current models.
Friendly fire is an issue too, the OnePlus 7T Pro is still a very capable flagship and is cheaper, so now we have to get into the value for money math. The 8 Pro is IP68 rated and supports wireless charging, two things that the company has avoided in the past. Also, the 4,510mAh battery is larger, promising longer endurance.
The main 48MP camera upgrades to a larger sensor (with 1.12µm pixels, up from 0.8µm on the 7T generation) while the ultrawide cam goes from 16MP to 48MP resolution. However, the 8MP telephoto cam has not changed as far as we can tell. Also, the new Color Filter camera is more of a gimmick.
The screen is larger at 6.78” (up from 6.67”), which is usually a good thing but keep in mind that the 8 Pro is anything but petite. The new Fluid AMOLED panel also goes up to 120Hz refresh rate, up from 90Hz on last year’s models. The pop-up camera is replaced by a punch hole, we’re sure that there will be comments for and against that change.
The OnePlus 8 Pro gets the latest chipset, of course, a Snapdragon 865 along with the new LPDDR5 RAM. Those two promise higher performance at lower power levels. The phone is also 5G-enabled, though whether or not you care about that depends on your local carriers.
That’s a long list of incremental updates, but does it amount to €900 of value? Especially when the 7T Pro is €760 with twice the storage? You can read our hands-on review for a closer look at the new features, but the complete answer to that question will have to wait for the full review.
It’s OnePlus 8‘s turn to take the hot seat. Unlike the Pro vs. Pro comparison, the upgrade path is not as clear cut here. You get the old screen, the old main camera, you lose the telephoto camera and €100 more of your hard-earned cash. Is this an upgrade at all?
It is in some respects. The Snapdragon 865 chipset is definitely a perk and the phone has 5G connectivity. The models for Verizon and T-Mobile are also IP68-rated while the unlocked models are not (the two versions have hardware differences so it’s not just a matter of an official label).
Also, the 4,300mAh battery is 500mAh up on the 7T power bank. There’s no wireless charging here, though, not even on the carrier models.
Beyond that not much has changed. Do you think that the $700/€700/£600 price of the OnePlus 8 is justified or is the 7T the better phone? Also, keep in mind that the OnePlus 7 was a pretty bland upgrade while the 7T was significant improvement – some might consider waiting for the 8T.