The OnePlus 6 is the most polished, premium smartphone the firm has made in its short existence.
Update: The OnePlus 6 has a new, limited edtion color, simply called Red. As you may be able to guess, it’s a red finish, and you can buy the 128GB OnePlus 6 in the new shade now.
It boasts an all-glass design, bringing it in line with big-name flagships such as the Samsung Galaxy S9 and iPhone X, a large 6.28-inch display complete with the on-trend notch, dual rear-facing cameras, both fingerprint and face unlock, and up to 256GB of storage.
There are several core improvements over the OnePlus 5T (and OnePlus 5) that it replaces, and while it may not break any new ground in terms of features, the OnePlus 6 brings an attractive package that makes it relevant in 2018.
OnePlus 6 price and availability
OnePlus 6 release date: May 22, 2018
Launch price: from $529 (£469, Rs 34,999) for 6GB/64GB
The OnePlus 6 release date was May 22 for North America, Europe and India, but the handset is now available in a number of additional locations as well.
In the UK the OnePlus 6 is available exclusively on contract from O2, and SIM-free from OnePlus’ own website.
There’s still no word yet on when — or even if — it’ll ever be made officially available in Australia.
The OnePlus 6 price starts at $529 (£469, Rs 34,999) for the 6GB of RAM and 64GB of storage configuration, which is more expensive than the OnePlus 5T, which cost $499 (£449) for the same RAM and storage.
Then you have the 8GB/128GB variant at $579 (£519, Rs 39,999), which again is a $20/£20 increase over the 5T.
The 128GB OnePlus 6 is the only variant available in the limited edition red finish, so if you like the look of it you may want to act fast.
Finally, there’s the new top-end 8GB/256GB model, which officially takes the title of the most expensive OnePlus smartphone ever. This OnePlus 6 price for this configuration is $629 (£569).
That’s still cheaper than the likes of the Galaxy S9, iPhone 8, LG G7 ThinQ and Sony Xperia XZ2, but if you’re looking for something more affordable you may want to check out the Honor 10.
If you’re in India or China, the 8GB/256GB configuration of the OnePlus 6 is actually a limited-edition Marvel Avengers device, available from May 29 for Rs 44,999.
OnePlus’ biggest-ever display at 6.28 inches
Full HD, Full Optic AMOLED panel with 19:9 aspect ratio
84% screen-to-body ratio thanks in part to notch
The OnePlus 6 display is one of the big new features on the phone. In fact, it’s the biggest display the firm has ever squeezed into a phone, with the 6.28-inch Full Optic AMOLED panel eclipsing the 6.1-inch offering found on the 5T.
OnePlus has continued to support the now-popular 19:9 aspect ratio too, giving you a taller display that offers up more on screen when you’re scrolling lists such as your Twitter feed.
While the display may be bigger, the resolution stays the same at ‘just’ Full HD. That’s 2280 x 1080 to be exact, which ensures it keeps the 402 pixels-per-inch density of previous OnePlus flagships.
However, in a world where QHD is fast becoming the norm at the top end of the mobile market, the screen resolution on the OnePlus 6 is a key area where the firm has looked to cut a corner in an attempt to keep costs down.
On its own the screen appears bright and vibrant, providing a pleasing level of detail. Slide it alongside a Galaxy S9 and you’ll see the screen on the OnePlus 6 isn’t quite as good – there’s no HDR support here either – but when you consider the price tag of this phone it’s not really an issue.
With the reduction in bezel above and below the screen the OnePlus 6 also boasts a 84% screen-to-body ratio that will likely please fans of outright display real estate. However this has come at a price: the inclusion of a divisive ‘notch’ at the top of the screen.
It’s smaller than the notch on the iPhone X, but larger than the camera-sized cut-out of the Essential Phone, lining up pretty closely with the implementation on the Huawei P20.
OnePlus tells us the notch wasn’t simply added as a ‘me too’ feature though. A spokesperson for the firm told TechRadar: “[OnePlus] fully appreciates the trend for reducing bezels and increasing screen-to-body ratio. [We] thought long and hard over the decision [to include the notch].
“We want to deliver the technology that currently works the best and we have to be sure of the technology we put into our devices, as we only make one [device] at a time.
“[The notch] works the best at the moment. Ultimately it’s not about the notch, it’s about the screen.”
Whether you’re for or against the notch it serves a useful purpose on the OnePlus 6, housing the front-facing camera, earpiece, LED notification light and ambient light sensor.
For those who really don’t like the notch trend you can effectively ‘hide’ it on the OnePlus 6 by making the screen either side of it black to create one continuous bar.
The choice is yours then, but there is something rather satisfying about seeing your wallpaper wrap around either the side of the notch. Or maybe that’s just us.
Slide the OnePlus 6 out of its packaging and you’ll see that it comes with a factory-fitted screen protector, which is always nice, although it does detract slightly from the overall look of the phone, as well as being a bit of a dust- and fingerprint-magnet.
It’s easy enough to remove, and doing so instantly makes the OnePlus 6 look more premium – but you’re then exposing the display to potential scratches and scuffs, so don’t hastily whip it off as soon as you get it out the box.