The OnePlus 6 is the most anticipated phone of 2018 in India, and for good reason. OnePlus’ aggressive strategy paid dividends for the brand in recent quarters, and the company has a firm foothold in the mid-range segment.
One reason for OnePlus’ popularity in India is because of the fact that the brand maintains price parity with its U.S. counterpart. The 64GB version of the OnePlus 6 retails for ₹34,999, which comes out to $515, or $15 less than what the phone is available for in the U.S. That was the case last year as well, wherein OnePlus launched the 5T at the same ₹32,999 ($485) price point as the OnePlus 5.
Compare that to what the OnePlus 6 costs and you begin to understand why the brand has such a fervent following in India. The country is now the largest global market for OnePlus, and accounts for over a third of all sales.
For the OnePlus 6, the company is introducing a couple of improvements that distinguish it from last year’s models. Key among them is a glass design at the back, a retooled camera setup with a brand-new imaging sensor, upgraded internals, and water resistance. There’s also an unwelcome addition in the form of a notch, but overall the OnePlus 6 is once again the phone to beat in this category.
OnePlus 6: Design
If there’s one word to describe the design of the OnePlus 6, it would be refinement. The switch to a glass back gives the phone a more upmarket look, and the fit and finish are in line with what you’d expect from the best that Samsung has to offer.
The one downside of the new design is that it makes the OnePlus 6 look similar to the endless wave of glass-backed Android phones. However, OnePlus is differentiating its phone by offering variants that have unique patterns underneath the glass back.
The camera sensor is now arrayed vertically, and has a more central position at the back. The new location for the imaging module means the fingerprint sensor is slightly lower than where it was on the 5T, and the sensor itself is now rectangular.
The positioning means the sensor isn’t as easy to locate anymore, but it’s just as accurate as before. The back also features the OnePlus logo, and it looks like the company is proud of its new design language, as it furnished the bottom of the device with a “Designed by OnePlus” moniker.
The front is dominated by a 6.28-inch display, which is notable for the cutout at the top. The other significant design alteration at the front is the Alert Slider, which is now located on the right side of the phone. The slider now sits above the power button, and its functionality has also been altered — you’ll easily be able to put the phone in ring, vibrate, or silent mode by toggling between the three options.
Down below is where you’ll find the solitary speaker, which sits next to the USB-C (2.0) connector and the increasingly rare 3.5mm jack. To its credit, OnePlus says the jack will be a mainstay on its devices for the foreseeable future. You also get aptX HD for high-fidelity streaming over Bluetooth.
The OnePlus 6 is also water resistant for “everyday occasions,” but the phone doesn’t have an IP rating. OnePlus didn’t clarify what those everyday occasions were, but the lack of certification means that while the OnePlus 6 will withstand the splash of water, you’re better off not taking it to the pool.
The OnePlus 6 is available in three variants — Mirror Black, Midnight Black, and Silk White — and all three models have something unique to offer. The Mirror Black version has a glossy back with a piano black finish, and the Midnight Black model has a textured film underneath the glass that shows off an “S” under certain lighting conditions.
The Silk White edition, meanwhile, has pearl powder that creates a shimmering effect. Both the Midnight Black and Silk White variants have a matte finish. The Silk White is the most exciting option of the three, but it is also the model that’s hardest to get a hold of. OnePlus mentions that the variant will be sold in limited quantities, and it’s likely it will sell out altogether in a matter of days following its availability on June 5.
I’m reviewing the glossy-backed variant of the OnePlus 6, which is quick to pick up smudges. The variants with the matte finish fare slightly better in this regard, but you’ll want to use this phone with a case. Thankfully, OnePlus makes a range of excellent first-party cases.
That’s not all for the Indian market, however, as OnePlus is launching the OnePlus 6 Marvel Avengers Edition later this month in the country. The Avengers edition features a kevlar pattern underneath the glass back that’s reminiscent of OnePlus’ Karbon Black cases, and there’s also the Avengers logo at the back.
OnePlus 6: Display
The OnePlus 6 now has a 6.28-inch display — thanks to the notch — but the overall height at 155.7mm is slightly less than the 5T’s 156.1mm.
Like last year, you’ll be able to adjust the screen calibration to either sRGB, DCI-P3, or a custom color profile. The panel is still FHD+, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing as you’re not going to notice a whole lot of difference between QHD and FHD+ on a 6.28-inch screen anyway. And by continuing to offer a Full HD screen, OnePlus is able to deliver better battery life.
The OLED panel offers vibrant colors with excellent contrast levels, and while the overall brightness isn’t quite as high as what you’ll find on Samsung’s latest flagship, it is perfectly serviceable. Like the 5T, the OnePlus 6 offers one of the best panels in this category.
There’s an ambient lift up display mode that wakes the screen when you lift it up off a surface, and you also have the option to wake the screen for incoming notifications. The phone also has a night mode that you can automatically schedule to kick in from sunset to sunrise or at a predetermined time.