OnePlus 8-series smartphones revealed, featuring up to a 120Hz display, wireless charging, and more

Chinese phonemaker OnePlus today revealed the latest flagship devices in its smartphone lineup: the OnePlus 8 and 8 Pro. During an hour-long livestream, the corporation showcased the smartphones’ specifications, new features, their design, and — of course — their price tags.
We’ll cover each of these topics in turn for both the OnePlus 8 and 8 Pro while pointing out any model-specific features as needed. First, let’s talk design: overall, you aren’t going to see a lot of major stylistic changes here. The OnePlus 8 and 8 pro both look pretty similar to other devices we’ve seen from this company, if you consider the overall shape.

Both phones are still all-screen, though they now feature hole-punch selfie cameras at their top-left corners. This sets them apart from the 7T and 7 Pro, which had a “notch” and pop-up camera, respectively. This hole-punch camera design isn’t unprecedented, but it is relatively new for OnePlus, so we look forward to seeing how users feel about it in the long run.

The rear-facing camera area is where we see the first major differences between the 8 and the 8 Pro. The 8 Pro has 48-megapixel ultrawide and standard cameras, in addition to a 5-megapixel color filter lens and an 8-megapixel telephoto lens. The ordinary 8 has the same 48-megapixel standard camera, but its ultrawide lens gets downgraded to 16 megapixels, and it’s missing both the telephoto and color filter lenses (replacing them with a single 2-megapixel “macro” lens).

That’s not too much of a loss, though: reviewers say the color filter lens isn’t particularly good in the first place.

Both devices ship with 128GB and 256GB storage configuration options, as well as 8 or 12GB of RAM, depending on your budget and preferences. Each gadget is running OxygenOS (OnePlus’ skin for Android 10) on Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 865 SoC, which promises “up to 25 percent” faster performance than hardware in previous OnePlus smartphones.

Moving on to displays, the 8 Pro is slightly bigger than its cheaper cousin with a semi-curved 1440x3168px, 6.78-inch screen (the 8 has a 1080x2400px 6.55-inch display). It’s also considerably smoother — while the base OnePlus 8 ships with 90Hz refresh rate screen technology, the 8 Pro kicks things up a notch to 120Hz.

That will lead to faster gaming (provided your games don’t have locked framerates), as well as more fluid scrolling and navigation. It’s a difference that will likely need to be experienced first-hand to truly appreciate, however.

Both smartphones come with in-display fingerprint sensors, 5G support, and Warp Charging technology (which can grant you a 50 percent charge in just 23 minutes) over USB-C. If you’d prefer to go the cord-free route, the 8 Pro features both wireless and 3W reverse charging, two firsts for the OnePlus smartphone family. If that’s not enough, the 8 Pro also boasts an IP68 rating, though the standard 8 does not.

As far as battery life goes, reviewers say the devices can last anywhere from 12 to 18 (or more, in some cases) hours on a single charge, and OnePlus itself promises “all-day” battery life. Obviously, your mileage may vary depending on how much you use the device, but those numbers aren’t terrible for more casual use. The 8 Pro contains an 4,500 mAh battery, and the 8 has an 4,300 mAh battery.

So, with the core specifications out of the way, let’s discuss price. The OnePlus 8 Pro starts at a whopping $900, and the OnePlus 8 comes in at $700. In summary, that extra $200 premium gets you a smoother display, an improved camera, and access to luxury features like wireless and reverse charging. Otherwise, the devices are quite similar, and according to reviewers, you won’t go wrong with the cheaper OnePlus 8 if you’re on a tighter budget.

The OnePlus 8 and its 5G model will ship through Verizon, T-Mobile, Amazon, and, of course, OnePlus’ website. The 8 Pro and its 5G version can only be purchased through OnePlus or Amazon, meaning you won’t be able to offset the high cost with a carrier-specific payment plan — for now, that is. Orders are set to open up on April 29.