Thursday, June 16, 2016

OnePlus 3: Is it really worth it?

Many Chinese smartphone manufacturers have entered the smartphone market, while promising high-end specs at entry-mid level price. OnePlus is one of them. For the past two years, OnePlus has managed to release a smartphone with flagship specs, which always keeping the price around $300-$350. This year, OnePlus is back again with OnePlus 3, and seems to present one hell of a bargain. But is it really worth the buy?
OnePlus 3 sports a massive 5.5” 1080p AMOLED display with Corning Gorilla Glass 4, a Snapdragon 820 processor with Adreno 530 GPU, and a beastly 6GB of RAM memory. It also features a 16MP rear camera with Sony IMX 298 sensor, and an 8MP front camera. It has everything that the top flagships of 2016 like the Samsung Galaxy S7, LG G5, and HTC 10. Indeed, OnePlus has 50% more RAM than any other flagship in the market. On top of that, it has all the little perks like a fingerprint sensor and rear camera optical image stabilization. Besides, OnePlus has left behind their invite procedure, allowing everyone and anyone to by the device. All this only for $399, and unlocked, without contract. It sure as hell seems like a steal. However, blinded by the superior specs of the device, people tend to overlook the one thing that matters the most – software. Over the past, OnePlus is known provide little to no support for software updates. Even its 2015 flagship, the OnePlus 2, just recently received Android Marshmallow; months are the developer preview for the next version of Android, Android N, was released. This is really disappointing, since customers apparently expect a Nexus level software update support for these phones since they pretty much run basic, AOSP stock Android. Even Samsung was able to update its Galaxy S6 to Android Marshmallow before the OnePlus 2 – and we all know how slow Samsung can be with updates, especially in the US. Moreover, based on previous report about the company’s customer service, it can be said that they have near to non-existing customer support, so if something wring happens with your device, it is probably going to be a headache to claim warranty support.

At the end, it all depends on if you are willing to be stuck on one Android version for a long time, and compromise your security by missing important Android security update. Spec may look appealing at first, but all that matters in the end is if you can receive bug-free, stable software to keep your device secured and have a good user experience.  

Image: Android Pit