OnePlus 5 Review

21 July 2017, 17:59:42

OnePlus 5 Review
The review unit has been provided by Fastcardtech.com

Design, build and controls

In terms of design, OnePlus has taken it a step further, applying utmost refinement to the unibody design you're already familiar with from the 3 and 3T, as to achieve the distilled look of the OnePlus 5. Every unit is made from a single slab of space-grade anodised aluminium alloy. The surface has the familiar fine grained matte finish achieved through sandblasting. Gone are the sharp rear edges from the previous models. The corners are rounded, so are the vertical rear sides and only very slightly - the rear horizontal ones. The manufacturer shares that it has "developed and focus tested over 100 variations before finalising a subtle curvature that perfectly matches look and feel with durability". The thin chamfer on the front edges is preserved. Actually, the frame tightly encompasses the plastic casing of the display that has a visible rim gently merging with the 2.5D curved edge of the protective glass of the screen (Corning Gorilla Glass 5). Handling and tactile experience are amazing and this impression becomes even firmer the more we use the smartphone. Indeed, this is the result from perfecting even the smallest details. Back to the frame, it features what OnePlus calls a Hoziron Line - this is an uninterrupted horizon-like division to the phone's edge that wraps around the whole device and makes it look even thinner. It is almost unbelievable how thin the smartphone feels in the hand. This is OnePlus' thinnest smartphone to date with a waistline of 7.25 mm. This is a 0.1 mm thinner than the 3T and is actually the thinnest smartphone with a 5.5-inch screen and a 3300 mAh battery (with the exception of Highscreen Easy XL and its Pro sibling, which are 7 mm thin). In addition, the manufacturer shares that despite that the battery is smaller, it has managed to improve battery life with 20% over the 3T. Well, this is about to be tested in the Battery section of this review, so let's get back to the rest of the dimensions. OnePlus 5 is as wide as the OnePlus 3 and 3T - 74.5 mm, which also makes them some of the narrowest smartphones in this display+battery size class. The height of 152.7 mm is well below average among smartphones with a 5.5-inch display. The 5 is also 5 grammes lighter than the 3T, weighing 153 grammes. The model is available in Midnight Black and Slate Gray colours. We are reviewing a black unit. The usual Alert slider is on the top of the left frame and switches between the same old profiles: silent, priority, and all. The volume button is placed below it. The dual Nano-SIM card tray is on the left frame and the power button is below it. All buttons are made of metal, with the Alert slider having a distinctive patterned surface. They protrude only very little while providing excellent tactile experience. There's been a lot of hype due to the resemblance of OnePlus 5 and iPhone 7 Plus. The only thing that's really similar is the placement of the dual rear camera module, the mic hole and the LED flash on the back of the device. And we must say, the OnePlus 5 looks and feels way better than the iPhone 7 Plus. And the differences - they are many. It is the details that matter. The camera module is quite subtle and protrudes only a little. It is worth noting that it does not have a sapphire glass to protect the lens like the 3 and 3T have. The NFC antenna is almost invisibly inlaid as a vertical line above the camera ring. The antenna bands almost merge with the curves of the device and are appropriately coloured remaining only very subtly visible. We do like the fact that every functional element has an aesthetic, design purpose as well. The only other element on the back of the device is the OnePlus logo. The back design is pretty clean and that's how we like it, too. On the front of the device, the two areas above and below the display are quite generous - something typical for OnePlus smartphones. Above the display, from left to right, the RGB LED notification light, front-facing camera, proximity and light sensors, and the earpiece are positioned. The navigation bar is placed below the display. Just like in the OnePlus 3 and 3T the home button is not a real button actually, but a touch-sensitive area with an embedded fingerprint sensor and ceramic cover. On the two sides, there are two capacitive backlit dots (blue colour), which serve as a Back and Menu button. There are lots of customisation options for the navigation bar in the Settings and you can also opt for an on-screen one, but that's not recommended. OnePlus' hardware solution does a great job and looks great, too. It's pointless losing screen estate with an on-screen navigation bar. The top frame is bare. It is the bottom one that houses a 3.5 mm jack, a microphone hole, a USB Type-C 2.0 port with two visible screws on its sides, and a single, bottom-firing speaker.

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