OnePlus One Review

Great Android Device?

Short answer, yes. Very much so. $350.00 for a 64GB Android device running 4.4.4 at the time of this writing. Running a very stable CyanogenMod CM11s. Now, I normally get confronted with three questions, when people see the device:

  • Do you have an invite?
  • OnePlus ... blank stare ... is that Samsung?
  • What special feature(s) does it have?

I find the third question the most difficult to answer, so I saved it for last.

OnePlus One

Firstly, I don't have an invite. Sorry. Sit tight, though. At the last AMA on Reddit, OnePlus said it was hoping to have a real pre-order system in October.

Secondly, Oneplus isn't part of Samsung or any other mainstream Android OEM. Oneplus is a Chinese based company, which is owned by OPPO. They don't sell in stores currently, and Oneplus saves money by only selling online via an invite system.

As for the the specs - it's a Quad core Snapdragon processor at 2.5GHz. The 64GB model shown in the pictures is 152.9mm (H) by 75.9mm (W) by 8.9mm (D). Weighting in at 162g, the phone is extremely light and feels great. Mind you, this is a big phone. Coming from an iPhone, it was a little bit of a shock. Reading on the train or watching Netflix is awesome on this device, though.

The back camera is a 13MB shooter with a 5MB front camera. It takes great pictures and the CyanogenMod camera software works well. Below, you can see a sample image of the case that I am presently using with this device. The device also allows you to draw a circle while the screen is off to automatically bring up the camera application and take a picture.

Diztronic TPU Case

Now, the hardest question - what special features does the Oneplus One have? Well, I'll list a few features which are great, but which are just not in the same league as TouchID (Apple iPhone 5s) or being waterproof (Samsung Galaxy S5).

  • Double tap screen while off to wake device up
  • Draw a circle on screen to bring up the camera app
  • Draw a V on screen to start the torch app
  • Constant and very visable OS updates by CyanogenMod (I believe I've sideloaded 3 since I got the device in July)
  • Sandstone back on device screams high-end
  • Extreme customization of CyangenMod over say Android flavors like TouchWiz (Samsung) or HTC Sense
  • Price ($350.00 for 64GB)
  • Very active user base /r/oneplus
  • It's unlocked out of the box

Honestly, I'm not doing the device justice. I'm only listing the items I know and use.

So, should you buy the Oneplus One?

  • Do you need a new device?
  • Is an unlocked device important to you?
  • Is cost important to you?
  • Are you willing to jump through some hoops to get an invite?

If you answered yes to all of the above, then swim on over to the Oneplus One. The water is fine, and you can make it any type of water you like.

Below is my own device's home screen. I'm using the Yahoo Aviate Launcher, and it's fantastic.

by Joe Dunn

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