Every time I've reviewed a OnePlus phone, it always turns out the same: great specs, but a flawed device in ways that keeps it from reaching superstar status. That pattern changes with the OnePlus Open, the company’s first attempt at a foldable phone. The OnePlus Open should be a wakeup call for everyone.
After spending nearly three weeks capturing portrait photos with the OnePlus Open's Hasselblad cameras and becoming acquainted with its Open Canvas multi-tasking, I’ve come to appreciate how it achieves so much for a first-generation foldable. For instance, it took Samsung effectively five tries to incorporate a gapless hinge design as it finally did with the Galaxy Z Fold 5 — the OnePlus Open does that (and much more) in one fell swoop.
I don’t want to spill all the beans yet on how much this foldable has left an impression on me, but as you’ll read in my OnePlus Open review, it’s the dark horse I didn’t expect to like so much. Sure, there are still areas where the Open could improve, but this first effort has closed the gap in such a substantial way for notebook styled foldable phones.
Not only is the OnePlus Open a best foldable phone contender, but it's also one of the best phones released this year as well.
OnePlus Open review: Price and availability
The OnePlus Open costs $1,699, which is $100 less than both the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and Google Pixel Fold. I was really hoping for a deeper discount considering how OnePlus phones have historically undercut the competition by a much larger margin.
Now, what’s strange in all of this is the trade-in offer that OnePlus is offering with the Open. This offer will give buyers a $200 credit when they trade in ANY phone in ANY condition, so your two decade old Nokia candy bar phone still has value if it’s been hiding in storage somewhere. OnePlus says that this offer will continue throughout the product’s lifecycle, making it effectively $1,499 to buy — which is a tremendous value all things considered.
Preorders for the OnePlus Open are available right now, with other special offers available though Amazon and Best Buy. General availability will begin on October 26, with two color options to choose from: emerald dusk or voyager black.
There’s only a single 512GB storage option for the OnePlus Open that’s accompanied by a whopping 16GB of RAM. In comparison, the same 512GB storage options for the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and Pixel Fold costs $1,919. This is a generous amount of storage and drives the point of its more bang for the buck value.
OnePlus Open review: Specifications
|Cover display||6.31-inch Super Fluid AMOLED (2484 x 1116)|
|Main display||7.82-inch Flexi-fluid AMOLED (2440 x 2268)|
|Refresh rate||1 to 120Hz with inner display, up to 240Hz with outer display|
|CPU||Snapdragon 8 Gen 2|
|Storage / Expandable?||512GB / no|
|Rear cameras||48MP (f/1.7) main, 48MP ultrawide (f/2.2), 64MP telephoto (3x optical zoom)|
|Front camera||20MP (f/2.2)|
|Inner camera||32MP (f/2.4)|
|Video||4K 60 fps|
|Battery size||4,805 mAh|
|Wired charging speed||67W|
|Size open||6.03 x 5.63 x 0.22 inches|
|Size closed||6.03 x 2.88 x 0.46 inches|
|Colors||Emerald Dusk, Voyager Black|
OnePlus Open review: Design
Even though the Open is still chonkier than a traditional slate, OnePlus does a fantastic job with the phone's design. It’s not as wide as the Pixel Fold when it’s closed, nor is it uncharacteristically narrow like the Z Fold 5 — so you could say it has that ‘just right’ size.
When it’s opened, however, the OnePlus Open has the largest footprint in a foldable I've tested, but that’s not much of a concern given its excellent build quality. For starters, it’s skinnier than both its main rivals at a svelte 0.22-inches thin, which is backed up more with its 8.43 ounce weight. This thin and light construction doesn’t make it flimsy either, which is the most striking thing about the design because it hands down has the best hinge design in a notebook styled foldable.
Its Flexion Hinge design serves up that satisfying snap gesture whenever I close it shut, while also minimizing the crease down the display. In fact, it’s a lot less noticeable or as deep as the creases I’ve seen with the Pixel Fold and Z Fold 5. And while the Emerald Green color of the phone exemplifies its premium look, there’s only one complaint I have about its design.
There’s a huge camera hump on the back, even bigger than the one in the OnePlus 11. I do like how it makes the phone an authoritative figure when it comes to capturing photos, but the sharper edges of the camera’s bezel often makes it odd to hold in the hand — making it more top heavy too. Due to how the upper portion is thicker than the bottom, it’s almost impossible to type on the keyboard while it’s laid flat on its back.
Despite this, I still prefer the Open's design over the Pixel Fold and Z Fold 5, including the fact that it also features an IPX4 rating. It’s less than the IPX8 rating of those aforementioned foldables, but some water resistance protection is better than none at all.
OnePlus Open review: Display
Winning in the specs department, the OnePlus Open outclasses its competition in both size and resolution. It features a main 7.82-inch Flexi-fluid AMOLED with 2K resolution (2440 x 2268) and an outer 6.31-inch Super Fluid AMOLED (2484 x 1116). These are bigger and higher resolution than the displays found on the Pixel Fold and Z Fold 5, so it’s a statement that backs up the Open's lower cost.
Tom’s Guide’s display benchmark test reveals a peak brightness output of 1,158 nits with the Open's main inner display, something I found visible using outdoors in my own experience. It’s a tad short of the Z Fold 5’s peak output of 1,346 nits, but much better than the Pixel Fold’s 1,000-nit brightness. At 721 nits, the outer display doesn’t get as bright, but it’s well in line with the results from the Pixel Fold and Z Fold 5.
|OnePlus Open||Pixel Fold||Galaxy Z Fold 5|
|Brightness (Inner/Outer display)||1,158 / 721 nits||1,000 / 1,172 nits||1,346 / 703 nits|
|DCI P3 color (Inner/Outer display)||80.6% (natural) / 79.2 % (natural)||90.1% / 88.4%||158.7% / 146.7%|
|Delta-E color accuracy (Inner/Outer display)||0.13 (natural) / 0.14 (natural)||.05 / .05||0.09 / 0.1|
Usually, AMOLED panels exhibit punchy color tones, but the default natural color mode is too muted for my liking. That’s why I switched the display to Vivid mode so that colors popped a lot more on the screen. I loaded up The Super Mario Bros Movie and it looked spectacular on its expansive 7.82-inch inner display.
My only concern about the OnePlus Open display pertains to the Ceramic Guard over the outer display. OnePlus claims it’s 20% more robust than Corning Gorilla Glass Victus, but I’ve already found several superficial scratches just by taking the phone in-and-out of my pocket
OnePlus Open review: Cameras
Even though the camera hump on the OnePlus Open is obnoxious, the triple camera arrangement of this Hasselblad camera does give the phone that camera-centric focus. The exterior camera array consists of a main 48MP main camera, 48MP ultrawide, and a number-crunching 64MP telephoto camera with 3x optical zoom. The latter’s able to deliver a 6x lossless in-sensor zoom, with a maximum 120x Ultra Res Zoom available if you really want to get close to what you’re capturing.
The camera app on board the Open has nearly everything I want in a phone camera, complete with a dedicated pro mode for manual controls with capturing photos, portrait mode, dual-view video, and a movie mode that effectively adds manual controls. I also like that I can capture selfies or self-recordings using the rear cameras, while activating the outer cover screen to make it easier for me to frame the shot. In terms of features and controls, the OnePlus Open is definitely on par to what the Galaxy Z Fold 5 offers.
The 48MP main camera on the OnePlus Open gets the job done when lighting is abundant in the scene, and I can say the quality rivals the Pixel Fold and Galaxy Z Fold 5. This shot of the beach boardwalk shows great range with the details, contrast, and dynamic range. I actually prefer it over the Z Fold 5, which tends to over sharpen the image.
There’s no deterioration with its 48MP ultrawide camera either, which still produces excellent results outdoors under sunny conditions. It slightly saturates the colors compared to the more realistic tones of the Pixel Fold’s shot, but I think it’s still a pleasing looking composition for the OnePlus Open.
I was skeptical that its 64MP telephoto camera with 3x optical zoom could match the 5x optical zoom lens of the Pixel Fold, but looking at this same shot of these construction vehicles on the beach reveals that it holds up. I will say that the Pixel Fold’s telephoto camera is sharper by a smidgen, but it’s really not a tremendous difference between them.
This lossless zoom implementation does get as good results as the Pixel Fold’s dedicated 5x optical zoom. I even managed to capture a super closeup of a harvest moon in the far distance at the beach, complete with what I figure is the same sorcery that Samsung uses with its Galaxy S23 Ultra to add details that aren't visible to the naked eye.
Macro mode is automatically engaged whenever I point the camera about 2 to 3 inches away from what I’m capturing, but the on-screen macro button gives me the option to disengage it. From what I can see, the Open leverages the ultrawide cameras for macro shots — and the results aren’t too shabby either. There’s good detail around some of the petals in this shot and doesn’t blur out as nearly as much of the background as the Galaxy Z Fold 5.
Snapping selfies with the outer 20MP front camera is also delightful, producing better fine details than the Pixel Fold’s front camera. I also like how the OnePlus Open balances out the exposure between the shaded area where I captured the photo against the bright sky in the background.
OnePlus brings along an improved Hasselblad Portrait Mode with the Open, which the company claims to deliver almost DSLR-level depth-tracking. I took the same portrait shot with the Z Fold 5, which clearly boosts the exposure in the shadows to produce a brighter shot — but the OnePlus Open handles the same scene like a champ. The exposure is more true-to-life, while fine details like the mesh pattern on the strap around my shoulder are preserved.
I’m inclined to admit that the OnePlus Open has the best camera in a foldable that I’ve tested, but its extreme low light performance doesn’t stack up against its rivals. Take my reference shot of this tree in my backyard to gauge a camera’s ultra low light quality. There’s a substantial difference against the Z Fold 5, which clearly draws out more detail in the tree and surrounding area. In contrast, the OnePlus Open’s shot is severely underexposed and muddier looking in the shadows.
Now, it’s not to say that the OnePlus Open is a wash in low light. That’s far from the truth because I think it holds up in certain situations. That said, it seems to favor this weird orangish hue at night, an effect that happens more often than not. I hope OnePlus pushes an update that could fix this.
Beyond that, the OnePlus Open does handle high-contrast scenes in low light decently — so it’s not a total wash for low light photography. In fact, it manages to capture faint stars in the night sky that I couldn’t see on my own.
OnePlus Open review: Video
Video recording on the OnePlus Open tops out at 4K 60 fps, with faster frame rates reserved for slo-mo videos in 1080p at 240 and 480 fps. As I’ve mentioned earlier, there’s a decent amount of video features on board, rivaling the options of the Galaxy Z Fold 5.
Shooting the same video by the beach with the OnePlus Open Galaxy Z Fold 5, it’s almost a dead tie in terms of performance. There’s rich detail in the Open’s 4K 30 fps video recording, but what I find even more fascinating is that its 3x telephoto zoom camera is just as good as the Pixel Fold’s 5x optical one. I zoomed into a CAT backhoe loader parked on top of a mound of sand by the beach and I was impressed by how the OnePlus Open matches the clarity of the Pixel Fold.
Under low light, however, the story remains the same for the OnePlus Open and its inability to keep up with its rivals. Not only does it have the dimmest footage against the Pixel Fold and Galaxy Z Fold 5, but there’s also much more noise in the shot. Even though it’s not perfect, the Z Fold 5’s low light video performance is more acceptable in my opinion.
All told, I was honestly surprised by the OnePlus Open’s cameras. Most notably, its 3x telephoto camera is just as good as the 5x optical zoom camera of the Pixel Fold, producing nearly the same amount of detail and clarity. The main camera is superb at capturing landscape scenes, portraits, and even some high-contrast low light scenes to an extent. There’s certainly still room for OnePlus to improve here, but I didn’t think the camera output would be this good.
OnePlus Open review: Software
I could care less about the look and feel of OxygenOS, the software skin for OnePlus phones that runs on top of Android. It’s functional at the very least and adopts most of the styling of vanilla Android without the fluff I see in other custom Android experiences.
Instead, what draws me most about the OxygenOS 13.2 running in the OnePlus Open is how it handles multitasking. It’s the main hurdle that foldable phone makers have faced by trying to bridge that gap with their own implementations because let's face it — these notebook styled foldable phones are essentially mini tablets.
Open Canvas is the feature that OnePlus offers with multi-tasking, and after running many of my favorite apps, I think it’s the best multitasking implementation I’ve seen in a foldable phone to date. That’s because it can simultaneously run three apps, regardless or not if they’re optimized for the larger main screen.
For the most part, it’s similar to how the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and Pixel Fold handle multitasking by dragging and dropping new apps onto the screen — but it’s the way Open Canvas handles showing them on-screen that’s different and unique. Most apps will display in their usual vertical format, but I like how apps that are optimized for full-screen mode are kept in full-screen. That’s because this "canvas" dynamically lets me switch my view, with full-screen apps shifting around to the main screen as I clock on them.
This is without a doubt the best multitasking experience I’ve checked out in a foldable phone, but it’s also great knowing that I can save up to nine multi-app presents for extreme multitasking. For example, I set one preset to run Instagram, Gmail, and YouTube as a group — then another separate preset for Chrome, Twitter, and Age of Origin. These presets remain in the phone's memory, so if I use the task switch menu to move to another app, they will remain accessible.
I can’t tell you enough how this implementation makes me more productive, but more so when it also features other multitasking capabilities such as the ability to drop and drag content from one app to another. I can have Gmail and the Photos app running side-by-side, then quickly use a drop-and-drag gesture to add a photo into an email I’m composing in Gmail.
Another surprising treat I didn’t expect to find with the OnePlus Open is its video-out function via USB-C. The Pixel Fold can’t do this, while the Galaxy Z Fold 5 has it and more with Samsung DeX. While the OnePlus Open's version doesn’t have the same utility that I like about Samsung DeX, this straight video-out screen mirroring feature is still a nice addition for OnePlus' phone. At the very least, I’m able to connect it to a monitor and pair my mouse/keyboard combo for what’s effectively a desktop PC replacement.
OnePlus Open review: Performance
In true flagship fashion, the OnePlus Open is armed with a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip — which is also what powers the Galaxy Z Fold 5. Strangely, the OnePlus Open delivers weaker results in GeekBench with scores of 1,087 and 4,203 in its single and multicore tests.
However, the Open puts up better results with its graphics processing performance running 3DMark Wild Life Original Unlimited. In fact, it powers through its main rivals with a score of 14,157 and the smoothest frame rate at 84.8 fps. In contrast, the Pixel Fold and Galaxy Z Fold 5 come up short with respective, frame rates of 40.4 and 81.3 fps running the same test.
|Row 0 - Cell 0||OnePlus Open||Galaxy Z Fold 5||Pixel Fold|
|Geekbench||1,087 / 4,203||2,783 / 6,945||1,390 / 3,291|
|3DMark Wild Life Unlimited||84.8 fps / 14,157||81.3 fps / 13,579||40.4 fps / 6,755|
|Adobe Premiere Rush (video editing)||68 seconds||41.7 seconds||60 seconds|
Rendering video in Adobe Premiere Rush took the OnePlus Open longer to do with a time of 68 seconds, versus the faster recorded times of 60 and 41.7 seconds posted by the Pixel Fold and Z Fold 5, respectively. Despite these nuances, the Open is responsive with everything I threw at it — including some heavy sessions playing Age of Origins while moving back and forth with Instagram.
OnePlus Open review: Battery
In my experience, I’ve consistently been impressed by the battery life of OnePlus’ flagship phones — and the Open is no exception. Looking at its skinny profile, it’s hard to believe that the Open is packing a 4,805 mAh battery, which I found more than ample to get me through a solid day of normal usage. By the time I’m about to hit bedtime, the Open's battery indicator is frequently holding at around 10% battery capacity. Other foldables I’ve tested usually tap out earlier, often requiring me to top up throughout the day.
Tom’s Guide battery benchmark test reveals the OnePlus Open has the best battery life for a foldable with an average time of 11 hours and 45 minutes with the display refresh rate set 60Hz. Sure, it’s still short against standard flagships like the iPhone 15 Pro Max and Galaxy S23 Ultra, but it’s much better than the 9 hours and 46 minutes posted by the Pixel Fold — and still better than the 11 hours and 25 minutes that the Galaxy Z Fold 5 posted running the same test. It also makes the OnePlus Open the first foldable phone to land on our best phone battery life list.
|OnePlus Open||Galaxy Z Fold 5||Pixel Fold|
|Battery size||4,805 mAh||4,400||4,821 mAh|
|Battery life (Hrs:Mins)||11:45||11:25||9:46|
|Recharge percentage (15 mins)||50%||26%||26%|
|Recharge percentage (30 mins)||85%||55%||55%|
Conversely, the OnePlus Open posts incredible recharge times as well, courtesy of its 67W wired charging. Using the included adapter, the drained phone manages to get up to 50% after 15 minutes of charging and nearly fully charged at 85% after 30 minutes.
Yet, there’s one missing feature in OnePlus' phones that I’ve been desperately asking for — and that’s none other than wireless charging. I get that OnePlus wants to keep its price competitive, but it’s still something I’d like to find in a phone such as this — more so when you’re forking over $1,699 for a phone.
The absence of wireless charging support is probably the biggest point of contention that anyone potentially buying the OnePlus Open will have to accept. I understand that wired charging is super fast, but I wouldn’t mind making the phone a little thicker to accommodate wireless charging.
OnePlus Open review: Verdict
OnePlus does more right than wrong with its first foldable, which I have to admit is a satisfying package filled with surprises. Considering that this is the company’s first attempt at a foldable phone, OnePlus hit the mark with a premium design that feels and looks more polished than the Pixel Fold and Galaxy Z Fold 5.
There’s no denying that OnePlus locked down a premium design, but I think it’s even more important to stress how it perfected the multitasking experience with Open Canvas. Fundamentally it’s very similar to what Google and Samsung implements in its foldables, but the extra step of how the screen dynamically adapts to fit three apps simultaneously is impressive.
The OnePlus Open is not without its shortcomings — like the camera’s weak low light performance — but I think the combination of the device's lower price, long battery life, fast recharge time, and premium design makes up a lot of ground for it. On top of that, it also helps when OnePlus is offering its special $200 trade-in credit for the life of the phone, which effectively keeps the cost at $1,499. There’s no other notebook-style foldable phone that impressed me more this year than this one.