The OnePlus 3 has been a step in the right direction or at least getting back on track. Last year the OnePlus 2 just didn’t hit the spot compared to the OnePlus One. The One introduced techies to a new design physically and with software. OnePlus took in some ROM developers and gave us Oxygen OS with a beautiful hardware design. This time around OnePlus changed a few things up with the OnePlus 3. For the most part, they provided a solid device.
Most of all, OnePlus dropped the sketchy marketing tactics. The first couple years were kinda rough and while it helped put them on the map, users were quite tired of the behavior. Along with the change of pace in marketing, they also ditched the invite system. The invite system caused quite the hype. Now, you can buy the new flagship right away. Not to mention right after the announcement the phone was available for purchase.
OnePlus kicked this campaign off the right way.
OnePlus 3 Review
From the time of unboxing, the OnePlus 3 has been a good experience. Many techies and reviewers were rather skeptical about if the OnePlus was worth it or not, mentioned multitasking issues, and some over-heating. Contrary, through the experience on my end, I’ve not had those issues at all. As a matter fact, it’s been an almost perfect experience.
Right after the software update that was pushed while shooting the unboxing video, the issues that did happen were fixed. A couple of those issues were light and dark theme options and the camera shortcut. Since then there hasn’t been an issues with the phone. At least from a non-knit-picky perspective.
What I Like
Aside from the release as soon as the phone was announced and the availability without an invite, the overall experience is my favorite thing about the phone. It’s actually difficult to name what is my favorite feature about the OnePlus 3. From first impressions I was pleased with the build quality. Although I REALLY liked the sandstone backs from the first two gen models. Buyers do have an option to get a sandstone case if the need for that wonderful texture still persists. Even though the build material is different, it is not a bad thing at all having metal as the material.
Looks amount to just half the experience with the OnePlus 3. It’s what’s on the inside that counts. The OnePlus 3 is one of the first phones to sport 6GBs of RAM! Many viewers were concerned with the multitasking capabilities due to a YouTube video showing the Galaxy S7 Edge beating down the OP3 in a multitasking battle. From my experience, no issues multitasking or frustrating lag.
The OnePlus 3 runs Oxygen OS, which is like a custom ROM. Oxygen OS is like stock Android with useful and full customization options/features. Honestly, Oxygen OS is something like what stock Android ought to be, but that’s a discussion for another time. Long story short, the OnePlus 3 has a great OS to keep the users who either like stock Android or features running. Even though OnePlus isn’t the fastest at getting the latest version of Android supported on their devices, Oxygen OS will still have more features than stock Android anyways.
Usually the camera is the first thing to be talked about with what’s liked about a device. The OnePlus 3’s camera is a pretty good one. There were not many times, if any time results were disappointing. As a matter of fact, the entire Marvel’s Collector Corps unboxing video was shot with the OnePlus 3. No audio/visual enhancements either. While, it doesn’t produce as good as the Note 5 or Galaxy S7 Edge, it’s just sliver away from being as good. The OnePlus 3’s camera is trusted enough to shoot video for Bane Tech’s channel.
Basically, the main difference (without being too picky) is the audio quality. The Galaxy S7 Edge audio recording is a bit better than the OnePlus 3. However, the OnePlus 3’s audio recording is not too shabby at all. Like I said, it’s good enough to publish on my tech channel.
Most of all, the camera is great for the average user. The camera is snappy to capture a photo and has user-friendly UI for the app. The app has all the features needed for a great experience. The camera is not a reason to hold you back from getting the OnePlus 3.
I’ll keep this part short and to the point. Personally, I don’t like getting into the battery life conversation because there are so many variables involved with how someone uses a phone. With that said and for some background info to give you a gauge to work from, I consider myself a power user. Throughout the day my phone is used for texts, calls, emails, web browsing, photos/videos, watching YouTube, and some gaming here and there. Basically, I use the heck out of the phone all day long. The OnePlus 3 gets me through the whole day. That’s what’s important. Not screen-on-time or any of that jazz. I don’t use battery saving features and jack my brightness all the way up. The OnePlus 3 is good on battery.
What I Don’t Like
There actually isn’t much I don’t like about the OnePlus 3 and the things I find fault with are really just personal preferences.
It’s a given the OnePlus 3 works on all GSM network, but I am rather stubborn on my belief that all devices need to include all networks these days. There are mid to top tiered phones that support CDMA networks, such as the Nexus 6P and Moto X Pure Edition. In my opinion, if those guys can fit it in their setup, so can others.
However, OnePlus did a little better this year because the OnePlus 3 actually reads 3g data and can receive calls/texts. Something the One and 2 did not do. So even though there’s no 4G LTE from Verizon, it’s still something.
Again, this point boils down to personal preference. Regardless, I’ve really come to appreciate front facing speakers. The stereo experience from front facing speakers sets the device apart from the rest. There’s nothing like it.
The benefits apart from simply better audio quality include:
- Hands won’t block the sound output
- Sound needs to come at you, not away from you
- Two speakers are better than one
The audio quality of the speaker is a bit better than the S7 Edge, but that’s because the S7 Edge is water resistant causing the speakers to sound pitchy. I’m not looking for an amazing cinematic 7.1 surround sound experience, but I do appreciate what front facing speakers offer. The OnePlus 3 is just middle of the road when it comes to what is produced. Not a deal breaker, but I point I’d like to bring up.
Another feature that is not a deal breaker to me, but might be for others is that there is no wireless charging with the OnePlus 3. While, I like to have the feature and use when possible, I don’t count it as much have feature. As long as a phone has some sort of fast charging, I am cool with it.
Hats off to OnePlus this year! They are heading in a much better direction this time around. The first to years were kinda rough with sketchy marketing and horrific customer support issues. OnePlus not only stopped the invite system, but they also ditched the Flagship Killer motto as well. Not that this is not flagship level device, it is a killer flagship though.
The only reason to hold anyone back from getting this phone is if you’re a Verizon user. Other than that, for only $399, you can’t go wrong with this phone.
In a nutshell this phone has a good camera, practical software for the everyday user, and a sleek build. The OnePlus 3 gave me a good experience and that’s all I ask for, out of a phone.
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