After much hype and a flurry of teasers, OnePlus has finally taken the wraps off the sequel to the surprise phone hit of 2014.
OnePlus Two is a considerable improvement over the OnePlus One, but how
exactly? And how will that affect the famously low price?
Let’s take a closer look at what we know about the OnePlus 2, and how it differs from the OnePlus One.
OnePlus 2 vs OnePlus One: Design
Even Samsung has given in and gone metal now, so perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised that OnePlus has followed suit.
the OnePlus One had a solid polycarbonate body, with a couple of funky
finishes – we’re thinking of the rough ‘sandpaper’ version in particular
– the sequel goes instead for a magnesium alloy frame, finished off
with polished steel buttons and stainless steel accents.
See also: OnePlus 2 vs iPhone 6
Sandstone black colour and feel is sticking around, something we were
big fans of, though you’ll be able to add a bit of personality through
StyleSwap covers. These include kevlar, bamboo, rosewood and the
fantastically named black apricot.
On the back you’ll find the
OnePlus logo, which, thankfully, hasn’t been moved to the front like you
normally see on Android devices. No one likes a massive brand stamp
breaking up the clean design on the front.
OnePlus 2 should prove to be a much classier phone than the OnePlus One
– though this change in material has had a knock-on effect for the new
phone’s weight. The OnePlus One tipped the scales at a
not-inconsiderable 160g, but the OnePlus 2 weighs in at 175g.
OnePlus 2 has a couple of interesting extras that the OnePlus One
didn’t have. One is a fingerprint sensor. Just like the Samsung Galaxy
S6 and iPhone 5S/6/6 , the fingerprint tech sits in a brand-new home
button. Well, it’s not so much a button, rather a touch pad that unlocks
the devices when you tap your digit on it. Will it be as fast as the
competition? We’ll have to wait and see.
Another new design
feature for the OnePlus 2 is USB Type-C, the reversible
wonder-connection that acts as both a charging port and super-fast data
connection. The OnePlus One is stuck on the Micro USB
standard, just like every other Android phone to date.
surprising new addition is the Alert Slide, a profile switching button
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that sits on the side of the device. You’ll be able to quickly toggle
between All Notifications, Priority Interruptions and No Interruptions
without taking the device out of your pocket. It sounds a small feature,
but it’s something we’ve wanted for a long time.
In terms of
dimensions, the OnePlus 2 measures 151.8 x 74.9 x 9.9mm, giving it a
smaller footprint than its predecessor though it is slightly thicker.
The OnePlus One was a mere 8.9mm thin, and 152.9 x 75.9mm.
OnePlus 2 vs OnePlus One: Screen
OnePlus One has a 5.5-inch 1080p LCD screen, which was pretty decent in
its day, but which can’t hold a candle to those on modern flagship
phones that pack Quad-HD panels. But, to keep the price down we assume,
OnePlus has decided to stick with the Full HD resolution, instead altering
the display in other ways.
There’s a new 15000:1 contrast ratio
that gives off deeper blacks than before, plus a Dark Mode UI tool that
should be great for checking your phone first thing in the morning.
OnePlus claims its latest blower boasts “the word’s most advanced
in-cell IPS LCD and ultra-bright LED technologies” so performance in
direct sunlight should be dramatically improved.
OnePlus 2 vs OnePlus One: Power & Operating System
known this for a while, but the OnePlus 2 will run on the Snapdragon
810 CPU, and upgrade from the 801 chipset that sat in the OnePlus One,
which is a bit of a controversial choice.
It’s not that the
latest Qualcomm CPU doesn’t have the power. It does. It’s octa-core,
64-bit, very fast. But it also runs a little warm, to put it mildly.
This has led to some serious overheating and throttling issues in phones
like the HTC One M9 and, more prominently, the Sony Xperia Z3 .
OnePlus says the chip tucked inside the OnePlus 2 is the Snapdragon 810
v2.1 and that it’s free of the temperature issues. We won’t know this
for sure until we get a device in for review.
is also making sure multitasking will be a breeze here, as the OnePlus 2
will sport 4GB RAM. That’s up from the 3GB tucked inside the previous
version. Well, the 64GB version will boast 4GB, the cheaper 16GB model
will have to make do with 3GB.
The OnePlus One first shipped
with CyanogenMod 12, a custom ROM based then on Android KitKat. That
would be updated to Lollipop, but a disagreement between the two parties
ended the relationship. So, the OnePlus 2 now comes running Oxygen 2.0
which is again based upon Android Lollipop. There are a few new tweaks
and some, like more granular control over permissions, that come
straight from the upcoming Android M.
OnePlus 2 vs OnePlus One: Camera
rumoured, the OnePlus 2 keeps the original’s 13-megapixel sensor,
instead deciding to improve it in other areas. The pixels are now 35 per
cent larger at 1.3 microns, meaning more light will be allowed in for
better performance in low light conditions.
Stabilisation is another welcome addition, again making your videos less
shaky and low light snaps less blurry, as is the new Laser Focus. LG
used some similar tech in the G4 and OnePlus claims it can focus in
under 0.2 seconds.
The OnePlus One was in no means a bad camera,
but these improvements should help make it much better. It will be
interesting to see how it compares to the Samsung Galaxy S6 and LG G4.
OnePlus 2 vs OnePlus One: Price
the biggest thing about the OnePlus One was its price. At £179, it was
half the cost of other phones with similar specs. If you wanted more
storage, the 64GB went for £219.
were rumblings that the OnePlus 2 would eschew the bargain price, but
that’s far from the case. At a starting price of £239 for the 16GB
version and rising to £289 for a 64GB, it’s still one of the best
bang-for-the-buck smartphones out there.
OnePlus 2 vs OnePlus One: Battery
Battery life was always fantastic on the OnePlus One and if the specs are to be believed, it should be even better on the new model. Gone is the 3,100 mAh battery, replaced by an even beefier 3,300 mAh version. That’s a nice little increase that, when combined with the more efficient chip, should help us easily go a day without having to reach for the USB-C cable.
OnePlus 2 vs OnePlus One: Early Verdict
It’s safe to say that we’re very impressed with the OnePlus 2 so far. Going on specs alone, and of course the low price, it sounds like an awesome combination of power, looks and unique features. Whether or not it can really battle the likes of Samsung, LG and HTC remains to be seen, but things are looking good so far.