Friday, September 26, 2014

OnePlus One review+unboxing

The OnePlus One comes in two varieties: the 16GB(269€) and the 64GB(299€) version. Shipping to Finland is 29,99€. I managed to get an invite to buy the OnePlus One 64GB and bought it with the enthusiasm of an Apple fanboy quickly parting with the total sum of 323,99€. Considering the specs I regarded this as not that much damage.

I placed the order on Thursday and the package arrived next Monday.
The package contains a charger, cable, a pin for opening the sim-card slot and the phone. The phone feels nice to the hand. The sandstone black surface provides a nice grip and makes you think how slippery your previous phones have been. The front is basically all glass with chrome framing. The phone has a classic look to it that doesn't go out of style.

The charger came in it's own box.
The specs of this device are remarkable. The device comes with CyanogenMod 11S based on Android 4.4, it has a quad-core cpu with enough oomph for any application. There's 3GB of RAM in this device. That's only one gigabyte less than on my laptop on which I'm writing this article. If you go with the 64GB version, you are going to have to work hard to hit the memory limit when installing apps. After a months use I managed to fill almost 10GB of the available memory and I have a gigabyte of music and a fed hundred megabytes of pictures. I've been installing a lot of apps and I have put the phone to heavy use. 740 MB is reserved for cached data only.

The 2100 mAh charger does it's job quickly
The OnePlus One has a 5.5 inch display with Full HD resolution. There are two cameras. The 13MP camera on the back can shoot high definition video and has very little noise even in less ideal lighting conditions. The 5MP camera in the front is more than adequate for VoIP. For photographs you might want to use the better camera, but the front camera does the job as well. When capturing your favourite duckface pose, it's easier to use the front camera since you can see the preview on the screen.

The package had some interesting features
The speakers on the phone perform better than I expected from a phone. I'm a heavy user so the battery lasts for about 22hours for me. With the wifi, mobile data, bluetooth, nfc and gps off it would probably last easily more than 26 hours. If you were to use some app that puts the phone in power saving mode, it would last even longer.

This was inside it
Naturally, if you name your product The Flagship Killer, it also has to have LTE, Bluetooth 4, dual band wireless networking and NFC that can handle software card emulation, payment methods and multi-tag support. I haven't been in a situation where the GPS would have taken any time getting a fix on the location.
IMEI and serial blurred on purpose

It's almost as if I have nothing bad to say about this phone. I did have to make some udev-tweaks on my computer in order to get the Media Transfer Protocol working, but I can't really blame the phone for it. There is no SD-card slot, the baseband firmware is proprietary and the battery cannot be removed without some serious surgery. Those are probably the only bad things I have to say about this phone. The worst being the proprietary firmware. It's a shame OnePlus did not go the extra mile to make a truly open phone. I do like that rooting this phone does not affect the warranty.
The screen had protective plastic on it

On Fedora this change made the phone and operating system talk to eachother:

ATTR{idVendor}=="05c6", ATTR{idProduct}=="6764", SYMLINK+="libmtp-%k", ENV{ID_MTP_DEVICE}="1", ENV{ID_MEDIA_PLAYER}="1"

The charger cable is sturdy and sim slot opener is a nice bonus

Sim slot opener for the microsim slot
Oh and unless you turn off the screen gestures, your OnePlus One will wake up on it's own and do all sorts of random things if you keep it in your sweaty pocket while helping a friend move. You can find the gestures settings in the settings main menu.

Ready to charge
I've been using the phone for a month now and I recommend it. It's a fine piece of hardware with the best Android distribution available and it's affordable.

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