The OnePlus 7 Pro may be the highlight of OnePlus’ big phone launch today (May 14), but it’s not the only phone the company has up its sleeve. The Chinese phone maker also revealed a less advanced version, the OnePlus 7.
Don’t look for the OnePlus 7 in the U.S. The phone’s not coming there, so far as we can tell. It is slated for a UK release, where the OnePlus 7 is set to arrive in June, starting at £499.
Compared to OnePlus’ last major release, the OnePlus 6T, there’s plenty you’ll find familiar about the OnePlus 7. But there are also a few key upgrades and a considerable price difference that might persuade users to wait for this one instead of buying a 7 Pro or 6T right now — at least in countries where the OnePlus 7 will be available.
OnePlus 7 cheat sheet
- What’s Different from the OnePlus 7 Pro: Only two rear cameras instead of three; Selfie cam is housed in a tear-drop style notch; Smaller battery and charging isn’t as fast; Lower-resolution display
- What’s the Same on the OnePlus 7 Pro: Snapdragon 855 processor; UFS 3.0 support; Latest versioon of OxygenOS; Software-powered Nightscape and Ultra Shot features for cameras
- Availability: No U.S. availability for OnePlus 7 right now
OnePlus 7 design
Unlike the 7 Pro’s bezel-free approach, the OnePlus 7 looks identical to the 6T, with a 6.41-inch, 2340 x 1080 AMOLED screen. This means that you don’t get the stunning 6.67-inch curved display with its 90Hz refresh rate offered by the Pro model, which is disappointing. But this is understandable given the price difference between the two phones.
What’s more, the OnePlus 7’s smaller size makes it more pocket friendly than the 6.4 x 2.99 x 0.35-inch 7 Pro.
OnePlus made the fingerprint sensor underneath the front display bigger on its new phones, including the OnePlus 7. So users of that cheaper model will be able to enjoy faster and easier unlocking.
The OnePlus 7 shares the same audio technology with the 7 Pro, specifically the Dolby-tuned dual speaker set-up. One speaker is located at the top centre of the phone, and the other is on the bottom right. That way you avoid muffling the sound accidentally when you hold the phone sideways.
OnePlus 7 cameras
Forget about that triple camera setup that the OnePlus 7 Pro offers. Opt for the OnePlus 7, and you’ll still get a 48-megapixel main camera with both optical and electronic image stabilization. But the telephoto lens is a goner on this model. Instead, the OnePlus 7 offers a 5-MP depth sensor on the back, to allow you to use bokeh in portrait mode.
Up front, the OnePlus 7 has a 16-MP selfie cam, just like its Pro sibling. But this is no pop-up camera. Instead, the selfie cam is housed in a water-drop notch, as it was on the OnePlus 6T.
Since the OnePlus 7 and the 7 Pro share the same software, though, the OnePlus 7 gets the same Nightscape and Ultra Shot capabilities as the fancier model. That promises to improve your photos in various scenarios and lighting conditions.
OnePlus 7 performance
The OnePlus 7 features at its heart the newest Qualcomm chip, the Snapdragon 855. That’s a step up from the Snapdragon 845 that the 6T uses, unlike the 3,700mAh battery, which is a direct carry-over from the older model.
The battery in the OnePlus 7 is also stuck with Dash Charge instead of the Warp Charge 30 protocol that the 7 Pro enjoys. While you won’t enjoy the faster speeds that Warp Charge delivers, you’ll still get your battery from zero to 60% in about half-an-hour. The new Snapdragon processor will help with this, since it’s more energy efficient than the Snapdragon 845 was. And don’t forget, the OnePlus 7’s smaller display will draw less power than the 7 Pro’s screen.
In terms of memory, the OnePlus 7, like the 7 Pro, benefits from UFS 3.0, the upgraded flash storage standard that will make for faster saving or loading times when accessing the phone’s storage memory. There’s also a RAM Boost option, which claims to predict your phone usage and prepare the data and apps you need accordingly, cutting down on launch times.
OnePlus 7 software
Something thing that both the OnePlus 7 and 7 Pro share equally is the new version of OxygenOS. It’s a smartly designed version of Android 9.0 Pie, much admired for making very few alterations or additions to the stock version.
There are a few new goodies though, such as screen recording, internal and external audio recording, an updated gaming mode, customizable shortcut gestures and the new Zen Mode, which when enabled locks you out of your phone for 20 minutes (except for emergency calls), giving you a chance to hit pause on your daily activities without being interrupted by a stray email notification.
OnePlus 7 price and availability
Unlike the OnePlus 7 Pro, there is only one color available for the 7, which comes in Mirror Gray. You can get a model with either 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage or 8GB of memory and 256GB of storage. Those will cost £499 or £549, respectively. For context, the OnePlus 7 Pro starts at £649, so OnePlus is definitely touting the 7 as the cheaper option, more in line with the 6T’s pricing in the U.S.