With big-name manufacturers having recently released their flagship phones — namely the Samsung Galaxy S5 and the HTC One (M8) — it’s refreshing to see other brands coming up with their own hero devices. The Oppo Find 7 has been one of the better-anticipated devices of this year, particularly thanks to its Quad HD display and fast-charging capabilities.
Lesser known Chinese brands like Oppo and OnePlus are touted to have brought back the “wow” factor to the smartphone market with their innovative offerings. If the Galaxy S5 and HTC One (M8) are more of evolutionary upgrades rather than revolutionary ones, these up and comers promise to give us a fresh perspective on smartphone design and technology.
We managed to get the Oppo Find 7a delivered to our doorstep, and here are our unboxing video, hands-on photos and first thoughts. Do note that this particular unboxing and first impressions video is for the Find 7a variant, which comes with a 1080p screen instead of Quad HD, and toned-down specs in terms of processor speed, storage and RAM. Also, the battery is marginally smaller (2800 mAh vs 3000 mAh in the premium variant), and the back plate features a smooth finish, instead of the carbon fiber finish of the Quad HD Find 7. This particular model is meant for sale in Asian and international markets.
Disclaimer: The model being unboxed and previewed here is the Oppo Find 7a, meant for Asian and non-US markets. While the Find 7a and the premium Find 7 model are similar in appearance and share most hardware components, these have their differences in specs.
The Find 7a comes in an attractive, premium packaging well-suited to its flagship status. Those who have previously bought the Oppo N1 would find the packaging familiar, being of similar design, with a few subtle differences.
In the box are the phone itself, the battery, fast-charging power brick, a micro-USB cable, in-ear earphones and extra earbuds, as well as the quick-start guides. Note that the power brick, which actually utilizes a voltage-opened loop and multi-step constant current charging (VOOC) technology, is bigger than the usual smartphone charging adaptor. The VOOC charger delivers more power to the device, charging the Oppo Find 7a’s 2800 mAh battery to 75 percent in as little as 30 minutes.
The quick start guides provide an introduction to the VOOC technology itself, which is a nice touch, especially since quick charging is one of the Find 7a’s flagship features. We think rapid charging is quite an evolution for smartphones. Researchers and startups are already looking into 30-second charging, though we’re still years away from commercial availability. While the Find 7′s VOOC is not nearly as fast , it’s a step in the right direction.
The Oppo Find 7a is a very attractive device. With its 5.5-inch QHD screen, the device will go beyond the comfort zones of anyone used to handling smartphones one-handed. As your thumb can only go so far, you’ll need the help of your other hand in doing some on-screen tasks — something you would be familiar with if you’re already using other flagship Android smartphones. Gestures play a big part in the Find 7a’s user interface — more on that later.
In terms of design and build, you will find the design of the Find 7a similar to the Find 5, which was a very solidly built smartphone. The Find 7a also comes with the same premium feel, although there is a bit of a difference, because it does not have the steel construction underneath. Still, the Find 7a has a sturdy feel to it. The shift to removable back plate comes with a few benefits, particularly easy access to the removable battery, SIM card and microSD.
The Find 7a comes with three capacitive buttons on the front bezel. The hardware button configurations are reversed from the usual Android configuration (e.g., Samsung devices). The power button is to the left, while the volume rocker is to the right. In terms of ports, the 3.5 mm audio jack is at the top (towards the left of the device), while the micro USB charging port is at the bottom center of the Find 7a.
At the back is the camera lens and LED flash. The Find 7a’s back plate is made of a metal-finish plastic. It gives off a premium feel, but is still plastic nonetheless. An interesting addition is the Skyline notification light at the bottom part of the phone, which produces a cascade of glowing light when you get notification alerts.
As for the user interface, Oppo’s Color OS has been updated with a myriad of features. Notably, the Find 7a uses a panoply of gestures that aim to improve the user experience with shortcuts and easier access to the phone’s functions.
For example, instead of having to press the power/sleep button to put the device to into standby mode, you can simply double-tap the home capacitive button. Similarly, double-tapping anywhere on the screen while the phone is on standby will wake it up. While the phone is asleep, you can also draw gestures on the screen, which activates pre-set and programmable functionalities. Color OS also supports Sky gestures — at least in the premium Find 7 variant — which provide access to motion-based shortcuts whilst you press and hold the volume-down button.
|Display||5.5-inch LTPS IPS LCD, 1080p (1080 x 920 px), 403 ppi|
|Processor||Snapdragon 801 - Quad-core 2.3GHz|
|Battery||2800 mAh, removable|
|Cameras||13 MP rear LED flash, Sony Exmor RS sensor, 6p lens, f 2.0, 4K, HDR|
|5MP front, f 2.0, 80 degrees field of view|
|Connectivity||GPS, GLONASS, microUSB, Wi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.0 LE|
|Software||Android 4.3, Color OS|
Note: these videos show the Quad HD Oppo Find 7.
More on the Oppo Find 7a and the Oppo Find 7 coming soon. Stay tuned for our review and feature focus videos.