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OnePlus TV is here: It's more than just your average TV
OnePlus has finally launched the much anticipated OnePlus TV in India. There are actually two models of the OnePlus TV: the OnePlus TV 55 Q1 and OnePlus TV 55 Q1 Pro.
As the names suggest, both OnePlus TVs are 55-inch 4K QLED televisions. The OnePlus TV Q1 is the cheaper of the two, simply because it does not get a sliding soundbar like the Q1 Pro variant. All the other specs and features of the two televisions remain the same. Let’s dive in and see what the new OnePlus TVs bring to the table!
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The OnePlus TV 55 Q1 and OnePlus TV 55 Q1 Pro feature slim bezels, keeping with smart TV design trends. Both televisions get an elliptical chrome base stand and the display is propped up on a vertical spine attached to the base. The company calls this the OnePlus Dock.
While the dock at the back adds to the visual appeal of the TV, its weight is held on by one screw in the middle of the base stand. This makes the TV wobbly at the slightest touch. For a 55-inch screen, the base stand could have been made thicker and sturdier to hold the TV in place, or OnePlus could have gone for the two-legged approach most TVs take.
That said, the dock is removable if you want to wall-mount the television instead of placing it on a tabletop.
The back of the OnePlus TV features a carbon fiber pattern. OnePlus told Android Authority that creating the back pattern was a long process involving complicated grinding and polishing. However, it feels like overkill because the back of a television is rarely visible, especially if the TV is wall-mounted.
One of the biggest visual differences between the OnePlus TV Q1 and Q1 Pro is the latter’s sliding soundbar. The OnePlus TV Q1 Pro features an eight-speaker front-facing setup housed within the soundbar.
You will have an option to make the soundbar slide in/out each time you power the TV on and off or to keep it visible at all times. You will also have an option to hide it behind the TV. However, you will not be able to completely remove the soundbar completely.
Both the OnePlus TV Q1 and OnePlus TV Q1 Pro are 4K QLED TVs and feature a VA (Vertically Aligned) panel instead of an IPS (In-Plane Switching) panel. VA panels generally offer better contrast ratio with deeper blacks compared to IPS panels. However, VA panels do tend to lose out to IPS in terms of viewing angles.
According to OnePlus, the 55-inch QLED display on the OnePlus TV is sourced from several different manufacturers. Although Samsung was first to introduce QLEDs in the TV industry, other manufacturers like Hisense and TCL also produces QLED displays thanks to licensing deals.
Unlike OLED displays, QLEDs are still LCD-based and feature quantum dots that light up with LED backlighting. OLED displays, found on the likes of LG or Sony TVs, have pixels that emit their own light, hence producing much better picture quality.
OnePlus says its QLED display features an NTSC 120% color gamut. This means the TV can reproduce all colors within the NTSC color space and beyond. The TVs also output 96% of the DCI-P3 color gamut. How accurate are those colors and how good is the picture quality? Read about it in our OnePlus TV review.
Moving on, the OnePlus TV features a custom-built Gamma Color Magic processor to further improve picture quality and color reproduction. The chipset also enables MEMC processing which enhances the way fast-motion content is displayed on the TV.
You also get support for HDR, HDR 10+, and Dolby Vision on the OnePlus TVs. If you have any content in the three formats (your own or through streaming services), the TV can play it out for you.
As previously mentioned, the only difference between the OnePlus TV Q1 and OnePlus TV Q1 Pro is the soundbar which appears on the latter. However, the sound on both TVs gets the Dolby Atmos treatment.
The OnePlus TV Q1 Pro features eight speakers within the soundbar — four full-range speakers, two tweeters, and two woofers. This, according to OnePlus, is a 2.1 speaker system with a 50W output.
The standard OnePlus TV Q1 gets four speakers with a 50W output, placed at the back of the TV.
Both TVs also feature custom audio tuning for the speakers, tunable through the Sound Mode settings on the TVs. You will need to select the User mode in the Sound Mode settings to tune the audio to your liking.
When you are not watching anything on the TV, you can connect to the soundbar through Bluetooth and listen to music. This shuts off the screen of the TV, while keeping the soundbar active.
Ports, connectivity, and hardware
Both OnePlus TVs run on the quad-core MediaTek MT5670 Smart TV platform and feature four HDMI 2.0 ports, of which one is ARC enabled. You will also find an Optical Audio port, standard AV ports, and an old-school antenna port. Sadly, there is no 3.5mm aux port on the television, so forget about plugging in your headphones directly into the OnePlus TV.
A removable cover on the back of the TV gives you access to all the ports. For cable management, you can put the cover back after attaching your cables in place to hide the mess of multiple wires.
For connectivity, the OnePlus TVs are Bluetooth- and Wi-Fi enabled. The TVs also come with built-in Chromecast so users can cast content from their phones directly to the TV without additional hardware.
The OnePlus TV Q1 and OnePlus TV Q1 Pro are both Android TVs running Android 9 Pie. OnePlus has promised Android OS updates for the next three years for both TVs. They feature support for Android apps through the Google Play Store and come with Google Assistant for voice search.
OnePlus also has some custom software baked into the TV in the form of its OxygenPlay application. OxygenPlay comes pre-installed on all OnePlus TVs and is a platform to discover a mix of content from OTT services like YouTube, Amazon Prime Video, Eros Now, Hungama, Jio Cinema, and Zee 5. It is essentially OnePlus’ answer to Xiaomi’s Patchwall and categorizes content by genre, language, etc. It also recommends content to users in a dedicated recommendations tab.
OnePlus TV Remote
The OnePlus TV remote is one of the most marketed USPs of the OnePlus TV. Despite its aluminium finish, the remote does not feel very premium to the touch. It is also not very ergonomically designed, with smartphone-like volume keys on the side, no apparent power on/off button, and navigational keys that tend to misfire.
Unlike traditional IR TV remotes, the OnePlus TV remote connects to the TV using Bluetooth. The advantage here is that you don’t need to point the remote directly at the TV to operate it. However, if you have multiple Bluetooth devices at home, you could experience some interference.
The remote is powered by a Li-ion battery that, OnePlus says, should suffice for at least three months out of the box. There’s a USB-C port on the remote for charging and OnePlus tells us 10 minutes of charge provides 10 hours of battery life to the remote.
It features a dedicated button for Amazon Prime Video, but not Netflix (read on to find out why). Additionally, there’s a button with the OnePlus logo that takes users to OxygenPlay and switches the TV on and off with a long press. There’s also a dedicated Google Assistant button that helps with voice search.
Content is king and the OnePlus TV offers a lot of it on board, minus Netflix. The TV comes with pre-installed apps, content from which populates its Oxygen Play platform. These pre-installed streaming apps include YouTube, Hotstar, Sony Liv, Amazon Prime Video, Zee5, and Hungama. Users can also download other apps from the Google Play Store, except for Netflix.
OnePlus TVs currently do not support Netflix, but the company has assured us they will be getting support for the popular streaming platform sometime in October or November. OnePlus also acknowledged it might have to change the remote of the TV to include a Netflix button once it gets approval for the service.
You can, of course, attach your gaming consoles to the OnePlus TVs. For a smooth gaming experience, the TVs feature a game mode that automatically turns on when users start playing. Game Mode reduces resource consumption from backend and optimises the TV for gaming.
OnePlus Connect app
The OnePlus TV offers an array of usability features through its accompanying Android smartphone app called OnePlus Connect.
You can use the app to type in passwords and search queries into the TV using your phone. You can also quickly switch between TV apps through your phone as the frequently used apps are displayed on the dock bar.
If you’re connected to WiFi on your phone, the OnePlus Connect app automatically feeds in WiFi credentials on your OnePlus TV, sparing you the hassle.
It also features Smart Volume Controls to automatically reduce the volume of the TV during incoming calls.
Additionally, the app allows you to search content across the OxygenPlay platform. You can look for a title of your choice on your OnePlus Connect app, hit play on the phone, and view it on your TV. You can also play and watch videos stored on your phone directly on your TV.
Other app features include the ability to navigate the TV, as well as take shareable screenshots of what’s playing on the TV screen.
OnePlus TV price and availability in India
The OnePlus TV 55 Q1 is priced at Rs 69,900 and the OnePlus TV 55 Q1 Pro is priced at 99,900. With these prices, OnePlus looks to compete with LG’s Nano-cell range of TVs, Samsung’s QLED TVs, and Sony’s range of LED TVs. Both TVs will be available starting September 28 on Amazon.
Availability in international markets
The OnePlus TV is currently being manufactured in China to be sold only in India. However, at a select media briefing, OnePlus told Android Authority that, if and when the OnePlus TV is launched in other markets, the company will have to rethink the size of the television. OnePlus feels 55-inch is a good size to sell in India, but other markets might do better with bigger 65-inch and above models.
Although OnePlus executives didn’t specify the next launch markets for the OnePlus TVs, they hinted at China and US as potential markets in the pipeline.