Hot on the heels of the iPhone 12 reveal, OnePlus has unveiled its latest flagship, the OnePlus 8T. It joins a crowded field of devices in the $700 to $800 price point, but in typical OnePlus fashion, the 8T adds just enough extras to make itself stand out from the crowd.
While there are similarities to the OnePlus 8 and OnePlus 8 Pro, the shifted camera array on the back of the smartphone and the flat display give it a very different look and feel while still sharing the OnePlus DNA.
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Despite some exterior changes, the internals sound quite familiar to any OnePlus 8 Pro fans. So let's take a look at everything there is to know about the OnePlus 8T.
OnePlus 8T price and availability
The OnePlus 8T is available for pre-order from OnePlus.com starting today and will be available for purchase on October 23 at 11 a.m Eastern time (8 a.m. Pacific). The OnePlus 8T has just a single 128GB option priced at $749.
OnePlus 8T specs
|Row 0 - Cell 0||OnePlus 8T|
|Display (resolution, refresh rate)||6.55 inches, 2400 x 1080-pixels (402 ppi); 120Hz AMOLED|
|CPU||Qualcomm Snapdragon 865|
|Rear Cameras||Quad camera; 48MP, f/1.7 main; 16MP f/2.2 ultra-wide; 5MP macro; 2MP monochrome|
|Front camera||16MP, f/2.4|
|Video capture||Up to 4K at 60 fps; 1080p at 240 fps (slow-motion)|
|Battery capacity||4500 mAh (65W charging)|
|Colors||Aquamarine, Lunar Silver|
|Size||6.3 x 2.9 x 0.3 inches|
OnePlus 8T design
The OnePlus 8T isn't a small device, at 187 grams and 6.3 x 2.9 x 0.3 inches. Hopefully, that speaks to its durability. And while I haven't had my hands on the OnePlus 8T yet, it certainly gives the impression of a premium aluminum and glass device so that weight is to be expected.
Thanks to its tapered edges and much more reasonable camera bump than many of its competitors the OnePlus 8T still looks much more pocketable than some other smartphones I've used this year.
While OnePlus doesn't quite blow out the colorway options, like Apple and Samsung, it does offer two beautiful looking colors with Aquamarine Green and the more subdued Lunar Silver.
OnePlus 8T display
Like Samsung, OnePlus brings 120Hz to a more affordable price point with the OnePlus 8T. While the 6.55-inch display is only FHD+, matching the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE and is the maximum resolution that can deliver 120Hz at the moment. Another shared feature here is 240Hz touch sampling, eliminating any perceptible lag between touch and action.
OnePlus 8T switches to a flat display, versus the curved display on the OnePlus 8 and OnePlus 8 Pro. OnePlus says that some prefer this style of display and I have to agree, while the curved displays look beautiful I find them less usable. Like the Pixel 5 the OnePlus 8T uses a flexible OLED panel, despite the flat display this makes it thinner and lighter.
OnePlus is calling out a couple of notable upgrades to the display for the OnePlus 8T. The first is a massive peak brightness of 1,100 nits, matching Apple's claims for the iPhone 12. The second is a "Just Noticeable Color Difference" of approximately 0.3, which it claims represents the highest color accuracy in the industry. Finally the OnePlus 8T adds HDR 10+ support.
OnePlus 8T cameras
The OnePlus 8T offers a quad-camera array, but it's a slightly unusual collection of lenses for those who are accustomed to Apple or Samsung phones. Instead of a telephoto, as you would find from those manufacturers, the OnePlus 8T adds a macro and monochrome lens to the traditional wide-angle and ultra-wide lenses.
The wide-angle primary lens features a 48MP sensor with optical image stabilization and a fast f/1.7 aperture. OnePlus claims to have done a lot of work on its Nightscape mode which will now trigger automatically in darker environments, but also allows you to manually toggle it yourself. Coupled with this fast lens, it's possible a real leap was made so we'll definitely be looking closely at that in our testing.
The ultra-wide-angle lens is a more modest f/2.2 16MP sensor, but it's the widest that OnePlus has offered at 123 degrees, which is slightly beyond what we see from Samsung (120 degrees).
The 5MP macro lens allows you to get shots very close to the subject, but these typically haven't fared well in testing. We'll find out if anything has changed. The 2MP monochrome lens is mostly there to deliver superior portrait results.
As with most Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 devices, the OnePlus 8T supports 4K recording up to 60fps and 1080p all the way up to 240fps. OnePlus has added a new Video Portrait mode on the OnePlus 8T that it claims will produce a pleasant natural bokeh effect using AI.
Video Nightscape is OnePlus' solution for video in darker environments and tries to apply the same AI boosting used for Nightscape photos to make videos captured in lowlight more appealing.
OnePlus 8T performance
We're familiar with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 in the OnePlus 8T, but it would have been nice to see OnePlus spring for the Snapdragon 865+. Then again, with just a 10% performance boost, it isn't a serious concern. OnePlus didn't skimp on the RAM thankfully with 12GB.
OnePlus addressed some features that are specifically directed at gamers like superior haptics and its game mode.
OnePlus has, fortunately, included support for 5G and Wi-Fi 6, so you're connectivity needs are future-proofed.
Storage will also not be a bottleneck with UFS 3.1 flash storage, keeping everything on your device running smoothly.
OnePlus 8T battery life and charging
There's no question that fast charging is a passion for OnePlus and it's on display again with the OnePlus 8T's Warp Charge 65. OnePlus claims it can deliver a "full day's power in just 15 minutes" and will top up the 4,500 mAh battery in just 39 minutes.
In case you were worried that this will lead to burn out on your smartphone, the OnePlus 8T has 12 temperature sensors and an encryption chip in the charging adapter and cable that help to monitor and maintain safe charging conditions while delivering maximum power to your smartphone.
OnePlus didn't make any specific claims on battery life for the OnePlus 8T beyond "all-day" so we'll wait to see how it handles in both lab and real-world testing.
OnePlus Oxygen OS 11
OnePlus is rightly proud of its track record with updates, it was the first to deliver Android 11 outside of Google itself.
Oxygen OS 11 introduces a number of new features to users. OnePlus highlighted the new always-on display (AOD) options that can offer glanceable information like Insight which gives you a glimpse at your Digital Wellbeing, Canvas that gives you photos, and a Bitmoji partnership AOD.
Live Wallpapers get some advanced new features with the ability to change based on time and environment rather than just random live movement.
Group Zen Mode allows you and a group of friends to all set your phones to Zen Mode together and take a step away from your digital lives.
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Sean Riley has been covering tech professionally for over a decade now. Most of that time was as a freelancer covering varied topics including phones, wearables, tablets, smart home devices, laptops, AR, VR, mobile payments, fintech, and more. Sean is the resident mobile expert at Laptop Mag, specializing in phones and wearables, you'll find plenty of news, reviews, how-to, and opinion pieces on these subjects from him here. But Laptop Mag has also proven a perfect fit for that broad range of interests with reviews and news on the latest laptops, VR games, and computer accessories along with coverage on everything from NFTs to cybersecurity and more.