There’s honestly not much more to show you than this big expansive screen.
I totally get the point of 2017’s war on bezels now—you get a much more immersive experience in a body that’s about the same size as the phone you were using before. On this device there can sometimes be a reachability issue with the taller 2:1 display, but OnePlus has included some thoughtful touches to help with that. You can program a shortcut for any of the navigation buttons (ie. a double tap or long press) to show the notification panel at the top of the screen; the same action can be assigned to a swipe down gesture across the fingerprint sensor on the back, just like a Pixel.
For the record, I prefer a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor as it lets you unlock your phone as you’re pulling it out of a pocket or bag. And where OnePlus put the sensor is perfect: dead centre, one third of the way down the phone and nowhere near the camera assembly.
You’d expect the screen’s extra pixels to have an adverse effect on battery life, especially when its the same 3,300mAh cell as the one in the OnePlus 5. But if there is a difference I’ve yet to notice it; it has consistently given me a day and a half or more with medium to heavy use.
It’s been an interesting ride for yours truly with OnePlus this year… After a great experience with the OnePlus 3 I was expecting the 5 to be no different, but quality control issues on the hardware I received ended up giving me my first experience with the company’s “no-hassle” return policy. But I ended up with another OnePlus 5, given to me by my girlfriend’s sister as we passed through Hong Kong in September. My big justification for buying the 5T was actually Freedom Mobile; because both the 5 and 5T support Band 66 the girlfriend and I can now give FM’s 4G service an extended test, in the second SIM slots of our OnePlus phones.
Once you go dual-SIM there’s no going back.
I was, by the way, able to root my 5T as soon as I got it. There isn’t yet an official version of the TWRP custom recovery, but there’s an unofficial version on XDA that did the trick. Android Nougat is actually a blessing on this phone, as Magisk and AdAway are fully supported out of the box.
My one big concern with this phone is its cameras. Not content to keep the portrait lens from the 5, OnePlus has instead decided to pursue low light performance; the second lens now has a wider aperture but the same focal length. It sounds to me very much like unfinished business, a stopgap solution for something that couldn’t be finished in time or delivered on budget. I’ll post some camera samples tomorrow.
In just about every other respect, though, this is a fantastic Android phone. And in this dawning age of ultra-premium flagships it’s an undeniable bargain.