I was intrigued by OnePlus 3T phone, its high end specification at a competitive price. About two weeks back I decided to go for it and sold online at Cashify the MotoG4 Plus I was using till then for Rs.7000 which I had purchased for Rs.14,999 six months back.  OnePlus 3T is an upgraded version of their successful OnePlus 3 phone which came earlier in 2016. 3T has latest Qualcomm 821 CPU, 6GB RAM, 64GB storage (No external storage but that’s fine for me), 3400 mAh battery that’s promised to give over 1 day of usage and 16MP front and back cameras.

At 5.5 inches and 158grams the phone is of convenient form factor. The 1080p Full HD with 401 ppi display is sharp, bright enough for outdoor viewing. The fingerprint sensor placed in the front is fast and most of the time accurate. I like the hardware buttons for back and task-switching, and the option to switch them as you like; the 3 hardware buttons (Home, Back, Tasks) can be extensively configured for events like double tap and long press; you do have the option of opting to software buttons if you wish (I see no reason to do that). Apart from a regular headphone jack, the phone has USB Type-C port for charging and data-transfer which worked surprisingly well with my PC. The DASH charging works great, I was able to do a full-charge from single digits charge in less than a hour; the battery comfortably lasts even on medium usage mainly camera for a whole 24 hours with WiFi/4G/Location ON.

I was not sure of the OxygenOS, a customised version by OnePlus but having used the phone for last two weeks it’s pretty close to stock Android and it feels comfortable. Just to be clear, I like Google Now so that’s the default launcher I have got so I get to see very little of OxygenOS.

Two features that stand-out positive for me with the phone are the loud & crisp bottom speaker and what OnePlus calls as the Alert Slider, a simple 3 position sliding switch that allows you to toggle between silence/do not disturb/normal – the design is clearly inspired from the iPhone but I don’t care, having a hardware switch for toggling notifications is the best user experience, you could do it blindly without looking at the screen.

Coming to the camera, the selfie pictures are impressive due to its 16MP camera – one of the highest resolution for a front camera in any phone. The rear camera (Sony IMX Sensor) is good, highly usable and I like it over MotoG4 Plus but it falls a bit short on low light conditions. The camera app is one of the simplest and yet powerful I have used in any Android phone; it allows full manual mode and can save RAW images in DNG file format which I can then process in Adobe Lightroom. Thanks to the camera’s Optical Image Stabilisation (OIS) the video recording comes out very well with clear audio as well.

To protect the phone from accidental falls and scratches I went with Spigen Rugged Armor case for Rs.899, it fits in perfectly and adds unnoticeable bulk and weight.

Overall if you are looking for the latest specification smartphone at a reasonable price of Rs.29,999 you don’t need to look any further than OnePlus 3T.

Today I got the firmware update (28_170114) for the phone taking it to Android 7.0 (Nougat), Oxygen OS 4.0.2 and the UI feels slick.

Below are few photographs that I took with the phone, all have been resized but not processed in any other way:

Sri Parthasarathy Perumal Koil, Triplicane, Chennai

Front of Sri Parthasarathy Perumal Koil, Triplicane, Chennai

Pongal celebrations at Sathyam Theatre, Chennai

Ashok Nagar Park, Chennai

Close-up of a flower

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