There are two things that I know of when it comes to OnePlus. One, they like to label themselves with grandiose titles, such as the OnePlus Two’s “flagship killer moniker". Two, it has one of the most obnoxious ways to acquire the phone that involves limited space invites. Hipster marketing aside, I’ve heard many things about the OnePlus, most of them positive, so I’d be lying if I said that the OnePlus phones didn’t managed to spark my interest. Well, said curiosity has been satiated as I’ve received the OnePlus X for review.
The OnePlus X has opted to use the standard design style of a flagship level phone. It has a metal band on the edge of the phone, the corners are of the phone are curved so that it doesn’t feel like a brick and the back is covered in a layer of glass to make it feel smooth in the hand while doubling as a CSI crime zone (fingerprints yay!).
The phone comes with a 5” display that is full HD, which is a nice touch considering that phones of this size usually settle on a resolution of 720 x 1280.
One thing that I am surprised about is that for such a small phone, the OnePlus X does weigh more than I was expecting. This is great for those that would like their phone to feel solid.
My one gripe with the design choice of the OnePlus X has to do with the fact that the capacitive touch buttons located at the bottom of the screen aren’t backlit. Couple that with the fact that the buttons are coloured greyish, and you’ll have a hard time even noticing it in the first place.
For software, the OnePlus X runs Android 5.0 Lollipop with the Oxygen OS skin. For a custom skin, Oxygen OS is incredibly lightweight, as the skin features only one single app that isn’t part of the standard Android setup.
Oxygen OS being lean means that the OnePlus X can run fast despite of its dated hardware, which will go into it a bit later, but otherwise, the OnePlus X offers an almost vanilla Android experience.
For components, the OnePlus X has settled on the Snapdragon 801, a chip that performs well, but is beginning to show its age. Other components include the Adreno 330 and 3GB of RAM.
In general use, the OnePlus X performs well. Web browsing, video streaming and the likes can be done without much fuss. There are the very infrequent crashes, but it isn’t a deal breaker by any means.
However, the limitations of the OnePlus X will be very obvious once you boot up some intensive programs or apps with it. Running graphically intensive games on this phone is a sure fire way to make the phone choke.
Alongside the deteriorating performance, the OnePlus X will noticeably heat up enough for you to take notice of it.
Imaging on the OnePlus X is handled by the 13MP rear camera and the 8MP front camera.
The rear camera on the OnePlus X is able to perform well during the day as the images for both standard shots and close ups have great quality. The same couldn’t be said of the OnePlus X’s camera during night conditions as the pictures produced then aren’t quite as good.
As for selfies, the OnePlus X’s 8MP front camera means that the selfies taken by it are of pretty good quality. It also has the compulsory beauty mode for those who wants to look as artificially good as possible.
After a week of using the OnePlus X, I can safely say that my reception to it has been lukewarm. I like the fact that the software on the phone is lean and the performance is good so long as you don’t expect much from it. That said, I wouldn’t be particularly motivated to get one just because it's a OnePlus phone. In a sea of cheap Chinese smartphones, the OnePlus X is just yet another drop in the ocean.
- Decent performance
- Well designed and feels solid
- OS is incredibly lightweight
- Camera is underwhelming in night conditions
- Components are aging