This morning in New York OnePlus did what everyone already knew they would do: they announced the OnePlus 5T, an incremental upgrade from the OnePlus 5. They provided much more than a phone announcement though with a lot of discussion around the DNA of OnePlus and how they got to where they are today.
The announcement itself was over an hour and the 5T had not even been mentioned more than half way in, that showed their focus on discussing their community, their DNA, how they got to where they are today including some of the missteps and mistakes. OnePlus talked a lot about the development of their operating system, OxygenOS, and how they perceive it. They perceive it as Android+, Android made even better by adding value to it. They talked about the user interaction with the device being key to OnePlus along with maintaining speedy performance through the use of no bloatware and system optimisation while at the same time being power efficient.
Their Beta program and the role it applies was also mentioned, with the feedback of over 250 closed beta testers and over 15000 open beta testers helping to make OxygenOS what it is today. The OnePlus 5 will receive an open beta for Android 8.0 in late November and the new OnePlus 5T will receive it’s Oreo open beta in late December — this was the first mention of the new phone.
The OnePlus 5T itself held very few surprises by the time it was launched this morning. It has near identical internal specs to its sibling, the OnePlus 5. It is still powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835, still comes in 6GB/64GB and 8GB/128GB variants, and still has a dual rear camera. Notably, the phone still has a 3.5mm headphone jack for those still attached to their phones by wires as well as a 3300mAh battery and the 5V 4A Dash Charging.
The main difference is in the display. The OnePlus 5T jumps onboard the 18:9 display aspect ratio trend, housing a 6.01 inch 1080 x 2160 Optic AMOLED immersive display. OnePlus mentioned the issues some other manufacturers are having with their display and said that was why they waited to implement the new aspect ratio. they are confident this is the best OnePlus display ever. Even with this larger display the OnePlus 5T maintains approximately the same footprint as the OnePlus 5 measuring 156.1 x 75 x 7.25mm and weighing just 162 grams.
The 5T has a new rear camera system, with both lenses having the same aperture size — f/1.7. The main camera is 16MP still but the second camera is now 20MP. The same aperture size for both lenses allows better low light photography and better portraits. The front camera is once again 16MP with an f/2.0 aperture and EIS.
The fingerprint sensor this time is rear mounted as there is no longer room on the front due to some incredibly small bezels. The minimal bezels has also resulted in the removal of the capacitive buttons which I was not a fan of on the OnePlus 5. OnePlus used to give you the choice — not any more, it is just not possible.
The software features that have been included that differ from the OnePlus 5 include a new face unlock that can unlock the phone in just 0.4 seconds using over 100 facial identifiers and to achieve a 99% success rate requires just the nose and the eyes. OnePlus admitted that it is not as secure as a fingerprint sensor and face unlock cannot be used for sensitive apps such as payment apps.
OnePlus have also included a new feature called Sunlight Display that not only adjusts the brightness when high levels of ambient light are detected but also adjusts the contrast of the display to aid readability.
The phone will ship with their OxygenOS based on Android 7.1.1 onboard but will receive an open beta Oreo in late 2017.
The phone will be available in Midnight Black only at this stage and the rumoured Limited Edition Star Wars OnePlus 5T was not mentioned at all. The pricing starts at $499US for the 6GB/64GB model and goes to $559US for the 8GB/128GB model. It will be available in the US, Europe and India from November 21.
At this stage there is no word on availability in Australia but we have reached out to OnePlus and hope that they can see the benefit of selling their phone directly to Australians. The OnePlus 5T will support all our major LTE bands just as the OnePlus 5 did/does so if you do decide to purchase one you will know that it will work perfectly here in Australia.
Stay tuned to Ausdroid for all the local OnePlus information, should it ever arrive. Fingers crossed it does because the OnePlus 5T looks to be an amazing phone. What do you think?