Behind the success of OnePlus One, the price of Google’s Nexus phone was a significant contributor. Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 devices were supposed to be in the ‘value for money’ category, but this was not the case with the Nexus 6. The price of this device was around Rs 50,000. In such a situation, OnePlus One managed to get the title of ‘Value for Money’ product. Apart from this, the marketing strategy of the company also became the reason for its advantage. The most important was the invite system. There is no doubt that in a short span of time, the company has managed to build a long army of fans.
oneplus 2 (OnePlus 2) also aims to capitalize on past success. Even though the latest smartphone costs more than the previous devices, it has a lot to offer to the spec buffs. OnePlus 2 has been developed keeping technophiles in mind, but features like microSD card slot, NFC and fast charging have also been removed. The inclusion of a second SIM card slot in the device is a great decision for a market like India, where there is no dearth of fans of OnePlus.
OnePlus 2 The second major change in CyanogenMod is the inclusion of its own Oxygen OS. Oxygen OS only has the stock version of Android with some additional features. While we’ve been a fan of the customization options in Cyanogen, it wasn’t as stable on the One device as it was on other devices. Seen this way, it is a pleasant change. At least in theory the OnePlus 2 should have fewer software bugs. Is it in reality so? Let’s know.
design and display
in terms of design OnePlus 2 The device remains the same as its old version, though with a few minor changes, the device feels like a new one. The most unique feature of this smartphone is the standstone black finish. If you were tempted by the One in terms of design, then you should also like the OnePlus 2. If you don’t like it, you can buy the back covers of Bamboo, Black Apricot, Kevlar and Rosewood variants which are available on Amazon India website.
The metal frame has been used in OnePlus 2 and there is also a removable back cover. The speaker grille at the bottom has been given a more modern look as we have seen in the new flagship devices from Apple and Samsung. There is also a new USB Type-C port at the bottom. Apart from the OnePlus logo, there is no other branding on the back side of the phone. Alert Slider is present on the left. We will discuss this later.
OnePlus 2 smartphone has a 5.5-inch full-HD display, which has a great viewing angle. According to us, this is the brightest display ever. The colors are very natural, they look a bit dry. Although this type of display is more preferred than the oversaturated panel, but some people may find it a bit sad.
software and performance
The OnePlus 2 smartphone comes with the company’s customized ROM Oxygen OS 2.0 which is basically the same as Android 5.1.1 Lollipop, but with some new features. The device’s launcher is similar to the recently launched Moto G (Gen. 3). Being a fan of the stock version of Android, we are overjoyed. During setup, you have the option to activate a feature called Shelf, after which it becomes your left-most home screen.
OnePlus says that the Shelf feature is a kind of experiment. It doesn’t even look very useful at this point in time. We like Google Now. If you want, you can download and install Google Now Launcher. Now it will be interesting to see what kind of changes will be seen in the shelf in the coming days.
There is a multiple user and guest mode in OnePlus 2. The smartphone also comes with the App Permission Manager feature that lets you manage the resource permissions of each app. We get to see this type of feature in Xiaomi’s smartphone. This is a great feature, as it gives you complete control of your smartphone. One thing to keep in mind is that using this feature will also affect the core functionality of many apps.
There are two hardware features of OnePlus 2 which are largely related to software. These are the fingerprint scanner and alert slider.
The fingerprint scanner is easy to use to unlock the device. By the way, if you want your fingerprint reader to run smoothly, then you should keep cleaning it after a time interval. If you are able to see a visible print on the top of the button, then it is likely that you will have to make two-three attempts to log in to the phone. We have rarely encountered this problem with the iPhone. On many occasions, the fingerprint scanner did not work at all. We had to unlock the phone by entering the PIN.
OnePlus 2 has a 64-bit Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor and 4GB of RAM. As expected, there was no problem with this device in performing normal tasks. Multitasking and swapping between different apps was super easy. The review unit we received never seemed to slow down. Games like Asphalt 8 ran smoothly. However, we found that the device got quite hot once while playing the game for 20 minutes continuously.
There are some minor drawbacks also with this device. Some apps just won’t run and some keep crashing occasionally. We could not see the answerer or reject control above the lock screen notification when there were calls. We had to unlock our phone, then select the ‘back to call’ option to answer the phone call. There was also a problem with the accelerometer. The video didn’t switch to landscape mode until we restarted the device. Once upon a time the cellular data itself stopped working. After applying all the remedies for a few days we had to factory reset the phone to get it working.
One drawback came to the fore with the software update. When we booted up the phone for the first time, we got a notification of the update, but we decided not to install it as we were on a slow internet connection at the time. We later realized that this was a huge mistake as the update message was not received again. We also factory reset the device but that notification was not received. Although users can update the device manually, most users do not want to tamper with this functionality.
OnePlus 2 has a notification LED which can light up in different colors when different types of notifications are received. The phone comes with SwiftKey in default mode. It also has Google’s keyboard. If you want, you can also install third-party keyboards from Google Play.
As far as call quality is concerned, the OnePlus 2 did a good job in areas where the network was strong. Its performance was very poor in weak connectivity areas.
Battery Life and Camera
In terms of battery life, OnePlus 2 gave two types of performance. Battery performance was average in our video loop test, while excellent in daily use. That too on 4G network. If our user pattern is the standard, then the battery should not have any problem to last for a day. We have come across several such batteries recently that give good results on benchmark tests, but not during use.
The OnePlus 2 packs a 13-megapixel rear camera that takes great detail pictures in good light. If you use the tap-to-focus feature, the camera takes some time to focus on the object. The performance was quite good even in low light. When it comes to the picture taken in the dark, the performance of OnePlus 2 is even weaker than Apple’s flagship device.
Front camera is quite good. The camera app is pretty simple in terms of options. You also get support for slow motion videos in this device, but despite the good lighting, these videos captured looked quite dull. Autofocus doesn’t work as fast whenever you move a frame in a regular video. The phone gets hot even when shooting videos in 1080p for a long time. The device can also shoot 4K resolution video, but can’t make clips longer than 10 minutes at a time.
Overall, the OnePlus 2’s camera is nowhere near the same as the Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge or even on par with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. Admittedly, these devices cost a lot, but when you have labeled yourself the ‘2016 Flagship Killer’, the comparison is bound to happen.
The OnePlus 2 is better than its predecessor in many respects, but it also has some flaws that remind us of the old device. There is a lot of improvement in terms of battery life and software, but there is room for further improvement in the software. We expect the company to improve its quality process as well. We know of several users who either complained about the OnePlus One screen or found the handset to stop working within a few months.
The company has also tried to overcome most of these shortcomings. We know many OnePlus fans who love their phones, but there is no shortage of complainers. This is not good for the company. Sadly, we cannot know about such shortcomings through the review unit. We use a device for a maximum of two weeks. Therefore, it is a challenging task for us reviewers to suggest a handset to the user.
Should you buy OnePlus 2 or not? If you are looking for a dual-SIM Android smartphone that has a good battery life and works on almost the stock version of Android. And if the price is around Rs 25,000, we would suggest that you go for this device, but be prepared to settle for some flaws. If you liked the One whose edges were rougher than the new device, then you will love the new device too. If you are one of those users who puts trust more than ‘value for money’ and want a smartphone that is as stable as a big company product, then OnePlus 2 smartphone is not in that league yet. In the end, make one thing clear, we can give review of OnePlus 2, not invite.