The OnePlus 8 and OnePlus 8 Pro want to be the ultimate in smartphones

OnePlus has unveiled its first flagship phones of 2020, and it’s fair to say that other handset makers are going to have to work hard to outdo the OnePlus 8 and OnePlus 8 Pro over the course of the year.

Packed with top-end specs and arriving with very appealing designs and colors, the phones even plug some of the gaps that previous OnePlus phones have left – there’s wireless charging support here, for the first time on a OnePlus device.

The standard OnePlus 8 brings with it a 6.55-inch, 1,080 x 2,400 pixel AMOLED screen running at 90 Hz, while the more expensive OnePlus 8 Pro offers a 6.78-inch, 1,440 x 3,168 pixel AMOLED screen running at 120 Hz. Both phones come with either 8 GB or 12 GB of RAM, and either 128 GB or 256 GB of internal storage.

It’s worth pointing out though that the Pro model is using a newer, faster type of RAM – LPDDR5 rather than LPDDR4X. According to OnePlus, that upgrade improves memory speeds by nearly 30 percent and reduces power consumption by a fifth.

5G is available across the board, and all the OnePlus 8 models are running the Snapdragon 865 chipset – the best Qualcomm chipset on the market right now. Every OnePlus 8 and OnePlus 8 Pro phone comes with the OnePlus OxygenOS software, based on Android 10, and features dual speakers and an in-screen fingerprint sensor.

As for the rear cameras, the OnePlus 8 comes with a triple-lens 48 MP main + 16 MP ultrawide + 2 MP macro camera, while the OnePlus 8 Pro upgrades that to a quad-lens 48 MP main + 48 MP ultrawide + 8 MP telephoto + 5 MP color filter. The snaps from both models should be great, but the Pro offers 3x hybrid zoom plus a variety of additional lighting effects and filters made possible by that extra lens.

The new phones (OnePlus 8 shown here) have punch-hole selfie cameras on the front
The new phones (OnePlus 8 shown here) have punch-hole selfie cameras on the front


Battery-wise it’s about honors even, with a 4,300-mAh battery for the OnePlus 8 and a 4,510-mAh battery for the OnePlus 8 Pro – though the Pro has a bigger display to power. Fast charging is supported on both phones, but only the Pro comes with the wireless charging we mentioned earlier.

The Pro model also adds full IP68-rated protection against dust and water, something else that’s been missing from previous OnePlus phones since the first one appeared in 2014.

There’s only so much you can tell about a phone without using it, but based on the specs and design, as well as OnePlus’ previous pedigree, these handsets look to be well worth their place in the OnePlus line.

Whether the upgrades on the Pro model are worth it is of course a subjective choice based on your needs and budget. The standard OnePlus 8 can be yours for US$699 and up, while the OnePlus 8 Pro comes in at $899 and up – in both cases the extra RAM and storage upgrade costs an extra $100.

The OnePlus 8 comes in what’s called an “Interstellar Glow” (or pinkish) color, as well as “Onyx Black” and “Glacial Green.” You can pick up the Pro in the same green and black, or “Ultramarine Blue.” Preorders are open now, with shipping on April 29.

As seems to be the norm now, OnePlus also announced a pair of wireless earbuds at the same time as its phones. The Bullets Wireless Z give you 20 hours of audio playback between charges, and are “coming soon” for $49.95 in black, blue, mint or oat.

Product page: OnePlus

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