After what seems like months of leaks and rumours - many of them coming from OnePlus itself - the OnePlus 6 is finally official. The ambitious smartphone maker has unveiled its latest flagship, and it's a gorgeous, powerful machine.
- OnePlus 6 initial review
- OnePlus 6 vs Huawei P20/P20 Pro: What's the difference?
- Best smartphones available to buy today
- The best Android phone: which is the top Android phone to buy today?
We've run over all the details of the latest smartphone from OnePlus. There's lots to love, so here's everything you need to know.
OnePlus 6: Design
- 155.7 x 75.4 x 7.75 mm
- 177 grams
- Gorilla Glass 5 front and back
- Mirror Black, Midnight Black, Pearl White and Red colours
Perhaps the biggest design story this year is OnePlus’ transition to a glass front and back design. It’s something we haven’t seen since the ill-fated OnePlus X in the company’s second year of trading.
What’s interesting here is that OnePlus didn’t go with three different colours with the same finish. Rather, each of the three colours we’ve seen has a different look and finish.
The Mirror Black finish is glossy and reflective, with the metal edges polished to match. Midnight Black has a more matte finish to it, but there’s more to it than meets the eye at first glance. There’s a perforated underlayer that creates an interesting S-curve reflection in certain light, at an angle. The edges on this model are anodised and matte, similar to the finish of the Midnight Black OnePlus 5T from 2017.
There’s Silk White too, which gets its name from the limited OnePlus One run in the company’s first year. Unlike that phone though, this one isn’t plastic in the slightest. The edges and camera trim are finished in a gold colour, while the glass back has an underlayer made from powdered pearl dust. It has a frosty, milky look and it feels really good in the hand. Sadly though, this one isn’t going to be available initially, and will be a limited run.
Lastly, there's the new Red colour that's similar to the glossy black finish, except bright red with very subtle golden/orange undertones.
It’s worth noting that, while the back has changed material to Gorilla Glass 5, the outer frame keeps the same design and build quality of previous models. Apart from the alert slider switching from left to right, the makeup is the same. Despite the larger display, the overall footprint is virtually the same too.
One thing OnePlus did tell us is that there is a degree of waterproofing here. We still don’t have an official IP-rating to enable us to compare with other devices, but, it is protected against those common water-based mishaps so many come across.
Get caught in a downpour while on the phone, or drop it down the toilet, and it should be fine as long as you quickly get it out and dry it. There’s a sealant separating the phone and battery casing, and silicon rings around the buttons as well as foam and silicon around the ports to ensure that water doesn’t get in.
Unlike other manufacturers in recent times, OnePlus has kept the 3.5mm headphone jack on the bottom edge and - keeping in trend with 2018 - there’s a notch at the top of the front panel hosting the front facing camera, earpiece and light sensor.
OnePlus 6: Display
- Yep, there's a notch
- 6.28-inch Optic AMOLED
- 2280 x 1080 resolution
- 19:9 ratio
Although not the sharpest around, OnePlus’ displays have been fantastic for brightness, contrast and colour saturation in recent generations. This year is no different, although the aspect ratio has changed again, thanks to that notch.
Upping the ante from the last model, the OnePlus 6 has a 6.28-inch (up from 6.01-inch) Optic AMOLED panel. It’s a 2280 x 1080 resolution, meaning a pixel density of 401ppi. For those concerned with ratios, that means it’s 19:9.
That notch on the top, like that on the Huawei and LG phones of recent weeks means status bar indicators are pushed further up the screen, creating a more immersive effect. Being AMOLED again means it’s still really vivid and has good contrast levels.
OnePlus 6: Hardware specs
- Snapdragon 845 processor
- 6GB or 8GB RAM
- 64/128/256 GB storage options
- 3,300mAh battery
- Dash Charge
OnePlus has always been about using the most powerful, speediest components available and that’s the case for 2018. The OnePlus 6 uses Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 845 processor alongside the Adreno 630 GPU.
What this means is that the phone should be really fast, and that games load quickly and reliably with minimal stutter or frame dropping. Add this processor to either 6GB or 8GB of RAM and we have a phone with some serious horsepower.
How much RAM you get depends on which storage model you go for when you buy it. This year there are three versions. You get 64GB, 128GB or 256GB of internal storage, and the latter two models ship with 8GB RAM, while the 64GB model comes with 6GB RAM.
In addition to that pure power under the hood, there’s a Dual SIM tray and the new capability to support two LTE connections simultaneously. The phone also supports category 16 LTE, so that’s Gigabit speeds on a mobile connection on networks that support that.
Other than that we have the same 3,300mAh battery capacity as the OnePlus 5T. The company claims that although the screen is bigger, you should still get similar battery performance thanks to the optimisations made to the software, and because of how efficient the Snapdragon 845 processor is.
Even if it does run out within a day, there’s still Dash Charge to save the day. 30 minutes plugged in using OnePlus’ ultra-speedy fast charger is enough to get you from zero to 60 per cent.
OnePlus 6: Cameras
- 16MP + 20MP dual rear camera
- OIS on both cameras
- 4K video
- 480fps super slow-mo
- 16MP front camera
If there’s one area that’s needed some improvement for OnePlus, it’s in the cameras. This year, things appear to be better, at least, from the spec sheet.
Like the OnePlus 5T, there’s a dual camera system on the back made up of one 16-megapixel primary sensor and one 20-megapixel sensor, both made by Sony. The difference this year is that the main sensor is 19 per cent larger, meaning bigger pixels, meaning better low light performance.
Both lenses are f/1.7 and both are optically stabilised, which should mean better, sharper images, even when the lighting conditions aren’t perfect or when you hand shakes.
Video performance has been improved somewhat as well with the addition of new slow motion options. Here, OnePlus took a different approach to the big-name flagships. Rather than let you take 960fps super slow mo clips, and only giving you a fraction of a second to capture the action, OnePlus lets you record an entire minute of 460 frames per second slow mo. At this frame-rate you get 720p resolution, or you can shoot 240fps at 1080p.
Then there’s the front facing camera which is also 16-megapixels and will be enhanced using Qualcomm’s AI engine for portrait mode selfies after a software update in a few weeks. That means, just like the Pixel 2, you can get that background blur from the front facing camera.
OnePlus 6: Software
- Android 8.1 Oreo
OxygenOS takes centre stage once more on the software side, and is based on Android Oreo for 2018. In truth, the software is much the same as the recent updates to the OnePlus 5 and 5T. That means gestures for going back, home and recent apps rather than navigation buttons (for those who want them).
One of the big changes comes in form of Gaming 2.0 mode. This not only kicks in do not disturb while gaming, but also boosts app loading speeds specifically for games. There’s also improved app prioritisation so that it can learn which apps to kill off in the background when it’s affecting performance.
For Unity Engine based games there’s a battery saver mode that slightly lowers frame rates and resolution so that gaming doesn’t completely kill your battery. Other than that, you get new wallpapers as well as the usual options for customisation.
OnePlus 6: Price and release date
- Pricing starts at £469 in UK
- $529 in the US
- 22 May launch date, pre-orders are open
- Best OnePlus 6 deals and SIM-free prices
As ever, OnePlus is undercutting its big-name rivals this year, but has increased the cost slightly from the OnePlus 5T. The entry level 64GB Mirror Black and Midnight Black models will be £469/$529 when they launch, while the 128GB models in black and white will be £519/$579 and the 256GB Midnight Black phone will be £569/$629.
For those looking to buy from the first day, you'll be able to purchase the OnePlus 6 direct from OnePlus from 22 May 2018. The limited edition Silk White model will be available from 5 June.