In 2014, the Chinese manufacturer OnePlus redefined our expectations of what an affordable smartphone means. The company arrived out of nowhere with a powerful idea: What if a phone could look good, have high-end features and not cost you an arm and a leg? With this in mind, they managed to impress everyone and delivered a powerful smartphone while also building a devoted fan base around it.
Now, two years later, the company officially announced their third flagship device, the OnePlus 3, which is every bit as powerful and affordable as everyone expected. Plus, with this release, OnePlus gave up on its invite system and finally you’ll be able to buy the smartphone right away.
Compared to its predecessor, the OnePlus 3 has a more refined, all-aluminum design, NFC and quick charging feature. Another major departure is the amount of RAM packed into the new device — 6GB (that’s more than some laptops have!). But the phone’s clear highlight is the price: for £309 ($399) you can get a device that has the latest and greatest processor and specs. The only downside, some might say, is the 1080p AMOLED display instead of a pixel dense 2K screen found on most other phones. But OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei is confident that it’s just as good for the vast majority of smartphone uses.
Like the previous model, the 3 runs the company’s own Android mod, called Oxygen OS. This operating system allows OnePlus to have much more customization options than standard Android—dark theme, icon sizes, more multitasking options. Also, OnePlus has optimized its in-house software to work especially well on the OnePlus 3, so it can take advantage of all that RAM in ways other Android competitors cannot.
OnePlus 3 specifications:
- 5.5-inch 1080p AMOLED display
- aluminium unibody, 7.33mm thick
- Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 820 processor
- 6GB of RAM
- 64GB of storage
- 16-megapixel rear camera with optical stabilisation, f/2.0 aperture lens, and 4K video capability
- 8-megapixel front camera
- 3,000mAh battery
- USB Type-C port (offers super-fast dash charging – 60% charge in 30 minutes)
- dual-SIM support
- fingerprint sensor
- Oxygen OS
- graphite and soft gold colours
With OnePlus 3, it seems that the company wasn’t looking to deliver something radically different or create the perfect device. Instead, they proved once again that it’s possible to build a flagship phone with impeccable performance, smart software, and high-quality design, all this squeezed into an affordable package.
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