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6 months later, here's everything good and bad about the OnePlus 7T Pro
Six months after the launch of the OnePlus 7T Pro, the company is ready to introduce its next flagship. We’ve already heard a lot about the OnePlus 8 series. Wireless charging, a 120Hz display, and fresh new design elements are just a few of the new features we expect. Accompanying that, however, are the rumors of a frightfully high price point. With that in mind, it makes even more sense to revisit the OnePlus 7T Pro.
How well has the OnePlus 7T Pro held up? Is the performance and battery life still as good? Moreover, is it still a good idea to buy the OnePlus 7T Pro? I’ve been using the phone since it launched and here’s what I think about it after six months of use.
OnePlus 7T Pro: The good stuff
OnePlus built its brand on a promise of speed and that’s one area where the OnePlus 7T Pro has stood the test of time. I’m a fairly heavy smartphone user. I have over 300 apps installed at any given point of time, multiple utilities synchronizing to my home server, and more. And yet, the OnePlus 7T Pro remains as speedy as it was out of the box.
Being powered by a then class-leading Snapdragon 855 Plus chipset means the phone has more than enough grunt to power through intensive tasks. Honestly, it shouldn’t come as a surprise, but I don’t find anything lacking here on a power front.
Daily tasks like juggling multiple social media apps, having 50-odd tabs open in Chrome (that’s normal, isn’t it?) and constantly streaming music does nothing to slow the phone down. Of course, the amount of RAM also plays a role here. To be sure, I’ve been using the 12GB RAM variant of the phone but I’m confident that the 8GB of RAM on the lower-end model would have been more than sufficient as well.
The 4,085mAh cell in the OnePlus 7T Pro wasn’t class leading at launch. Battery life is, however, a function of both hardware and proper optimization. OnePlus hasn’t just delivered on the formula, it has improved on it. Six months of extensive use later, I’m still getting a full day of comfortable use from the phone. While more battery life is always welcome, I’ve been suitably satisfied by the longevity afforded here despite the expansive display and power-hungry processor.
Battery life has only improved and a full day of use is the norm rather than an exception.
On an average day, I take the phone off charge around 9am and don’t feel the need to plug it in till late in the night. When I’m stepping out, the fast 30W charging comes in handy to give the phone a quick top-off.
I’ve missed having the ability to wirelessly charge the phone while driving around, but that’s an omission that OnePlus is about to fix with its next-gen hardware.
When I reviewed the OnePlus 7T Pro back in October, I noted that Oxygen OS focussed on refinement and bug-fixes over slapping in features. The out-of-the-box experience was fantastic and that has only improved with ongoing software updates. Changelogs from the latest update talk about improved RAM management, but I haven’t really noticed a difference there because I didn’t have a problem with it in the first place.
That said, I do have an issue with the fact that my phone is still running the January security patches. Yes, I know the update has started shipping in some regions and I understand delays due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis, but several other brands including Samsung have been able to ship updates on time. This isn’t a good look for OnePlus if it wants to play hard against the big boys.
I love the fluidity and no-nonsense software but updates have been slow.
I’ve long maintained that software is a big reason for buying OnePlus hardware, and the long term fluidity of OxygenOS plays a major role in that. Android phones have a bad reputation for slowing down over time, and, as an enthusiast, I’ve observed that first-hand. The OnePlus 7T Pro is still chugging along at full steam like day one, and that’s no joke.
The OnePlus 7T Pro was among the first few phones on the market to ship with a 90Hz-capable panel. Six months later, there are many more options available, but it doesn’t take away from the fact that the screen is still a looker.
I’ve enjoyed countless hours of content, games and social media use on it. Outdoors, brightness levels have been more than sufficient for excellent visibility. Indoors, the excellent contrast levels make media consumption a very pleasurable experience.
OnePlus 7T Pro: The not so good stuff
Look, the camera on the OnePlus 7T Pro isn’t terrible. Not by a stretch. But it just doesn’t cut the mustard when placed next to other flagship hardware. With OnePlus increasingly pitting itself against top-tier competition, it is only fair that the imaging needs to match up as well.
I didn’t have much issue with day-to-day use with the primary camera, but all too often there were major differences in white balance selection between the various lenses. The telephoto lens, in particular, wasn’t the best at resolving details. I also found the camera set up to be less than ideal at capturing motion. Trying to capture a photograph of a pet was an exercise in frustration, a subject that my Pixel 3 had no issues with.
In low light, things took a drastic turn downwards. I’ll admit that the night mode has gone a long way at improving image quality, but low-level details are still less than ideal and there’s more digital mush than I’d care for. Capturing low-light images with the telephoto or ultra-wide lens? Forget about it.
Is it still worth buying the OnePlus 7T Pro?
Perhaps I’m being unnecessarily harsh with the OnePlus 7T Pro, but it is the tiny details that make the difference between a good phone and a great one. I’ll also be the first to admit that the OnePlus 7T Pro has grown to become my favorite phone of 2019. One that I would happily recommend to anyone.
Short of flagship-grade imaging, there's little I'd change about the phone.
With rumors suggesting that the OnePlus 8 Pro might touch the $1,000 mark, the OnePlus 7T Pro becomes all the more relevant. The Snapdragon 855 Plus is still incredibly powerful. The software experience is fantastic and the company has promised three years of updates, though they could stand to improve the pace.
The OnePlus 7T Pro was a pretty good deal at the launch price of £699 or Rs. 53,999. Today, with ample offers and discounts available, it remains an excellent option for most smartphone buyers. It’s an option I would have no qualms in recommending.