OnePlus 7 is the most natural and linear evolution of its predecessor: the OnePlus 6T. Comes to the market a few weeks later than the OnePlus 7 Pro without those features that make the older brother so unique and unique.
By now OnePlus smartphones are no longer “flagship killers“: As they now come with devices of top-of-the-range price, but with super-competitive features. In fact, OnePlus 7 starts from Rs. 32,999 for the version with 6GB of RAM and 128 storage, Rs. 16,000 less than the 7 Pro. The many deficiencies compared to the more powerful model and the few changes compared to the 6T.
Construction and unchanged design
Outwardly it changes a little. The back of the shell is made of glass and the side frame in aluminum. This makes the construction very solid and in hand gives the feeling of being a robust and well-built smartphone. The rear surface treatment is not satin like that seen on the 7 Pro Nebula Blue but is mirrored with predominantly black color. I have no particular preferences, both colors are rather sober and elegant but this Mirror Black particularly attracts the footprints but makes it less slippery.
The dimensions remained unchanged compared to the 6T: 157.7 x 74.8mm. Even the 8.2 mm thickness is the same but the camera module protrudes considerably. Once placed on the table it will dance more than the 6T, but with the case (provided in conception) the situation improves.
If the dimensions between 6T and 7 are so similar, it is reasonable to expect that the enclosures will be the same between the two models. Unfortunately, this is not the case because the vibration slider and the ignition button are slightly smaller at the bottom and make the old cases unusable.
The display also remains the same as the previous OnePlus 6T. We don’t have the latest generation panel like the pro, but a more classic OLED Full HD. Furthermore, the possibility of setting the update frequency to 90hz is missing. The animations will, therefore, seem less fluid and we note that OnePlus 7 is a less premium model than the Pro.
The screen is still of quality, with excellent visibility in direct sunlight. There is a small notch with a teardrop shape on the upper side and both lateral and inferior frames are rather fine and optimized.
Unlike the Pro, we do not have the edges and this detail I consider is a point in favor of the 7. On the OnePlus 7 Pro, in fact, the curvature angle is very accentuated (as mentioned in the review) and makes the smartphone aesthetically beautiful but clashes with reflections accentuated in any condition of use. “Problem” which does not occur on normal 7 and which makes daily use with just one hand, almost better (certainly also thanks to the smaller dimensions).
The hardware components under the body are identical to those we saw on the older brother. So we have the most powerful mobile SoC produced by Qualcomm, the Snapdragon 855. We know it well now, we have already appreciated it so much in another top of the range in 2019 and we know how this octa-core is able to offer an excellent user experience. OnePlus 7 is a lightning-fast and responsive smartphone.
The Adreno 640 GPU allows you to play all the titles, even the most demanding ones, with maximum details and zero stumbling. To accompany it all there are 6 or 8 GB of RAM and 128 and 256 GB of storage respectively. These memories are the fastest available on the market, UFS 3.0 type.
For a long time, the Oneplus 6T was my main smartphone. I’ve always had a love and hate relationship with its sensor below the display. He was fairly fast but often it happened that with the first impression he recognized the imprint and that to do so I had to press firmly on the screen in a precise position.
On the OnePlus 7, we no longer have this problem and the first approach with this new optical sensor under the screen left me pleasantly surprised. Not only has it become faster but above all, it is extremely precise, without missing a shot with performance identical to that of the 7 Pro. Finally, this technology is reaching the speed of the old capacitive sensors.
Also on this model, there is a stereo speaker system. As on the 7 Pro, the main case is positioned in the lower part of the body and the second one uses the large ear capsule that we find in the upper part of the device. The sound is, therefore, fuller and cleaner.
Also, the vibration that I tell you right now is not like OnePlus 7 Pro. The improvement compared to the 6T is there, the motor has stronger and stronger feedback but it lacks the plus (and those options) that we find instead on the Pro variant. The battery remains the same size as the previous model: a 3700 mAh.
Oxygen OS 9
We have the well-known Oxygen OS 9 running around. Graphically renewed with the arrival of the OP6, the operating system based on Android 9.0 Pie is a sort of stock version with some customization that makes the difference. So we have the screen recording, the quick response in the landscape, the zen mode and the dark mode, which makes the black interface and almost all the other news is seen on OnePlus 7 Pro.
However, the Fnatic mode is missing. This is an advanced game mode created in collaboration with the famous eSports team. Oneplus has confirmed the arrival of the function even on older models such as OP5 and 5T, so we can assume that it will also arrive on the 7th “smooth” with a future update.
The photo department has always been one of the weakest points of OnePlus smartphones. Here the substance does not change, we are always behind the top range of the most famous brands, but I have seen a clear improvement of the photos with the rear camera but above all with the front one, in selfies on the outside.
In the rear body, we have a classic dual camera setup with the main one with a 48 MP Sony IMX 586 sensor, the same as the one we have on the 7 Pro. Here the only difference is with the more expensive model is the lens that goes from an aperture f / 1.6 AF/ 1.7. The secondary one is a simple 5 MP used exclusively to capture more information.
The shots produced are of a very good standard with very natural colors and an excellent dynamic range. The photos are more contrasted without the elements being distorted and the management of the parts in shadow is more controlled: therefore there is an excessive increase in brightness and consequently in noise.
The same considerations can be applied to the 16 MP front camera which also offers excellent quality. It is also possible to film in 4K at 60 fps with the rear cameras, but there is a time limit: 5 min for 4k at 60 fps and 10 min for 30 fps. The front one only records in Full HD instead.
- The improvement in sound quality is noticeable, and the secondary speaker is inserted very discreetly.
- It is not a small smartphone, but it is more content than the Pro and due to its dimensions and design it is very comfortable and does not tire.
- The fluidity of OxygenOS is maintained generation after generation, adding improvements and preserving stability.
- Taking into account the market and the jump with the Pro, the screen lags behind in terms of resolution and final quality.
- The same thing happens with cameras: there is hardly any evolution despite the 48 megapixels of the main sensor.
- There is no IP resistance certification and it gets dirty and scratches with relative ease.