Updated: August 4, 2022 4:00:47 pm
OnePlus is a brand that has worked hard to create its niche in the premium smartphone market. So much so that what was once a one-phone-at-a-time brand has now found the confidence to launch multiple flagships a year, catering to different markets and user segments. The OnePlus 10T will become the latest global flagship from the company, eyeing those planning to upgrade from earlier OnePlus phones or wooing away those who have been eyeing phones from companies like Samsung and Apple.
OnePlus 10T review: What’s new?
At first sight, the OnePlus 10T does look like a predecessor of the OnePlus 10R which came out a few months back. But without the iconic alert slider, the phone goes a bit out of the skin when it comes to the OnePlus legacy. But then we are getting used to this more now.
With a shiny metallic frame and glossy metal finish rear panel blending into it as well as the square camera bump, the OnePlus 10T has a very fluid look to it. It is however a large and slightly heavy phone, but one that offers a good grip. The camera bump is large, though it does not protrude out much. There are four rings in this square, three of them are cameras and one is the flash.
OnePlus 10T review: What’s good?
As always, this OnePlus phone has a stunningly sharp and vivid screen. The 6.7-inch FHD+ display captures your attention the moment it lights up to acknowledge your thumb is on the screen to unlock it. The 120 Hz refresh rate makes this a good option for gamers and the peak brightness of 950 nits is among the best in the business. I was impressed by the adaptive brightness of the screen, especially since I did the testing in a poorly lit room in New York.
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The OnePlus 10T is powered by the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 mobile platform., which signals that this is a top-of-the-line flagship and not a budget version, like the 10R launched in India earlier this year. In the few days I tested the phone, the performance was top notch and the phone did not have any heating issues. My usual stress point for the phone is with multiple tabs open on Chrome or Brave browsers. This was not a big deal for the 10T though. Even with 4K recording, the phone stayed cool after a few minutes.
In fact, along with the 120Hz display, the HyperBoost Gaming engine will make this phone of interest to gamers. I could not test a lot of the games on the phone, but whatever I tried was impressive, again with hardly any heating being noticed.
The OnePlus 10T sports three cameras in the rear. This was one of the aspects of the phone that impressed me. The 50MP main camera clicks some very good shots, also maintaining a natural colour balance wherever possible. In nightscape, it goes into a bit of overdrive by brightening up the images a bit too much, so I kept under-exposing the frames to make it a bit more subtle. It was able to capture the various hues of the New York sunset well.
The phone captures details well in Macro, though it uses a 2MP sensor there.
I thought it was also handling colours well, like when capturing a shelf full of doughnuts of different flavours.
And even with the twilight, it captured some red flowers well, something a lot of phones struggle with in brighter light.
The 8MP wide-angle however lacks detail at times, though if you are viewing just on the phone you will hardly notice an issue. The image clarity engine of the phone goes to work as soon as you click a photo and presents you with the best snap for the occasion. In some phones, this kind of post-processing means a lag, but the OnePlus 10T manages it quite well.
The one big USP of the OnePlus 10T is its support for 150W Supervooc Endurance Edition charging which can juice up the phone from 0 to 100% in just about 19 minutes. The charger uses two 75W charging pumps to juice up the phone and this charging management ensures that both the charger and the phone don’t heat up in the process.
But this is not the standard charger that comes with the phone and is only available with the top-of-the-line configuration. There is another cost you have to pay for this fast charging: the weight of the charger itself, which is well over 200 grams and a size that is as big as a man’s palm. But for those who are forgetful about charging their phones regularly, this is a lifesaver.
OnePlus 10T review: What’s not so good?
The OnePlus 10T is the sort of flagship that we have all come to expect these days, one that does not believe in doing anything spectacular but does everything better than before and more efficiently.
However, this phone is a bit of a letdown if you are a OnePlus fan, and I know there are a lot of them around. So if you are coming in for an upgrade, you will have to live without your favourite Alert Slider which has been kept out because of the compulsions of design and engineering. But that is as bad as a Thinkpad without a Trackpoint.
Also, users will have to wait for the OxygenOS 13 to be rolled out to this phone. It does not ship with the latest operating system out of the box. Another small thing I noticed is the addition of pre-installed apps on the phone. There are just a handful of them here, like Netflix. But somewhere I did not expect these in a OnePlus phone.
OnePlus 10T review: Should you buy it?
The OnePlus 10T will be a strong new contender in the premium Android segment where OnePlus has been dominating for a while. This time the phone will try to woo new users with its ultra-fast charging capabilities and top-of-the-line features across the board. So for those looking for a complete smartphone with a price that does not go through the roof, the OnePlus 10T will be a good option.
But the challenge for OnePlus will be to match the expectation consumers, especially returning buyers, will have from the brand in terms of what it stands for. That is something the brand will have to effectively manage going forward.
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