OnePlus unveils the OnePlus 3T, a faster version of its existing flagship

Shawn Knight

TechSpot Staff
Staff member

OnePlus as promised on Tuesday unveiled an upgraded version of its current flagship smartphone. The new OnePlus 3T is a bit more expensive than the standard OnePlus 3 but for some, the slight bump in price may be worth it.

The OnePlus 3T features a 5.5-inch AMOLED display coated in Gorilla Glass 4 operating at a resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 pixels (401 PPI) and as both OnePlus and Qualcomm alluded to days earlier, is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 SoC clocked at 2.35GHz compared to the industry standard 2.15GHz.

The chip is accompanied by Adreno 530 graphics, 6GB of RAM and your choice of 64GB or 128GB of local flash storage.

The 16-megapixel rear-facing camera uses a Sony IMX298 sensor (the same as the OnePlus 3) with a sapphire crystal coating on the lens while the front-facing selfie cam utilizes a 16-megapixel Samsung 3P8SP sensor.

I’ve often wondered why, in our selfie-obsessed society, manufacturers insist on using low-resolution front-facing cameras on otherwise cutting-edge mobile devices. To the best of my knowledge (and correct me if I’m wrong), the OnePlus 3T is the first to ship with a 16-megapixel (or higher) front camera.

Elsewhere, you’ll find a larger 3,400mAh battery that provides 13 percent more runtime compared to the 3,000mAh pack in the standard OnePlus 3. You also get 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.2, NFC, a USB 2.0 Type-C port, a dual nano-SIM card slot and a 3.5mm headphone jack. It’ll ship running OnePlus’ OxygenOS based on Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow (an update to Nougat is in the works, we’re told).

The OnePlus 3T represents a curious move in the mobile industry, not due to its specs but simply because of timing. The OnePlus 3 launched on June 14 of this year, or just over five months ago. This goes against the industry norm of releasing a new model every 12 months or so which, as you can imagine, has some OnePlus 3 buyers a bit pissed off that their device is already obsolete.

One has to wonder then, why would OnePlus risk upsetting a loyal fan base by making a flagship obsolete after just five months? There are a few possible reasons I can think of off the top of my head.

Samsung left a pretty big gap in the market when it recalled the Galaxy Note 7. Perhaps OnePlus saw it as an opportunity to capitalize on Samsung’s misfortunes? It would be a quick turnaround for sure but considering the 3T uses the exact same chassis as the standard OnePlus 3, swapping out a few bits of internal hardware may not take very long at all.

Or maybe it’s just another example of OnePlus doing what it does best – disrupting an established industry a la T-Mobile. Another explanation could be that this is just the new normal, what with Microsoft and Sony blazing the trail for mid-cycle hardware refreshes in the console industry. The fact that Apple's latest iPhone wasn't the radical redesign that some had hoped for may have also played a role in OnePlus' decision but I digress.

The OnePlus 3T is priced at $439 for the 64GB model and $479 if you opt for 128GB of flash storage. While that’s more than OnePlus customers are used to, it’s still one hell of a deal given the flagship-grade hardware. Look for it to launch on November 22.

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cartera

TS Evangelist
I highly recommend oneplus, I got one for my wife after it became clear Microsoft was retreating from the market. She loved her Nokia but was very impressed with the OP3, when I eventually jump ship from Apple I will get a OP.
 

Bubbajim

TechSpot Staff
Staff member
I think it might be a bit of a stretch to say that the original OP3 is now "obsolete". Unless the definition of obsolete changed recently and my copy of the dictionary is now obsolete.
 

Burty117

TechSpot Chancellor
I think it might be a bit of a stretch to say that the original OP3 is now "obsolete". Unless the definition of obsolete changed recently and my copy of the dictionary is now obsolete.
Agreed, the "old" OP3 isn't exactly slow or lacking in specs compared to the competition, If I owned an OP3 I wouldn't be annoyed.

Are they still selling the "old" OP3 as well as OP3T?
 

SalaSSin

TS Addict
I think it might be a bit of a stretch to say that the original OP3 is now "obsolete". Unless the definition of obsolete changed recently and my copy of the dictionary is now obsolete.
Agreed, the "old" OP3 isn't exactly slow or lacking in specs compared to the competition, If I owned an OP3 I wouldn't be annoyed.

Are they still selling the "old" OP3 as well as OP3T?
I am annoyed, I just got my OP3, and they announce a new version... Grmbl.
Gonna look into returning it so I can get the new one, actually.
 
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Burty117

TechSpot Chancellor
I am annoyed, I just got my OP3, and they announce a new version... Grmbl.
Gonna look into returning it so I can get the new one, actually.
I just checked, they're still selling the OP3 for the same price? All they've done is release a newer, more expensive model?

That's like buying a PS4 a week before the PS4 Pro is released, it's a more powerful but also more expensive version of the same thing. You shouldn't be entitled to take it back unless you plan on paying more for the more expensive version?

In which case, why are you annoyed?
 
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SalaSSin

TS Addict
When I ordered it, 1st of october, it had 4 weeks of shipping delay, and there was no word of a possible new version. One week later, rumors started popping up :-/
 

Skidmarksdeluxe

TS Evangelist
I think it might be a bit of a stretch to say that the original OP3 is now "obsolete". Unless the definition of obsolete changed recently and my copy of the dictionary is now obsolete.
Agreed, the "old" OP3 isn't exactly slow or lacking in specs compared to the competition, If I owned an OP3 I wouldn't be annoyed.

Are they still selling the "old" OP3 as well as OP3T?
I am annoyed, I just got my OP3, and they announce a new version... Grmbl.
Gonna look into returning it so I can get the new one, actually.
I don't understand why you'd be annoyed. It's not as though OP will care about your chagrin and do anything about it apart from suggesting that you pay full price for the newer model.
To me it sounds like someone saying "I bought the OP2 a year ago and now I'm pi$$ed off that they released the OP3 without telling me.
You must've read the disclaimer on just about every product you see saying "Specs, appearance and price can change at anytime without prior notice".
 
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Teko03

TS Evangelist
I am annoyed, I just got my OP3, and they announce a new version... Grmbl.
Gonna look into returning it so I can get the new one, actually.
I've ownd my OnePlus 3 for 3 weeks now . Sure it would have been nice to know this was coming, but am I upset or annoyed? Nope. The OnePlus 3t is $50 more expensive and had minimal changes. You probably will never notice the difference between the 820 & 821 processors, the 16MP front facing camera means nothing unless you're a SnapChat & selfie addict. Battery is probably the only think you'd benefit from --- that being said, I have no complants with battery life personally, plus it charges super quick. Just my opinion though.
 
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Deevo324

TS Rookie
The Oppo F1s smartphone from a company that I believe is related to One Plus also has a 16MP front facing camera. The Oppo F1s has a startling resemblance to the One Plus 3, particularly from the front, and is also an excellent device.
 

SalaSSin

TS Addict
Problem solved, my phone was still within the 15 days return & refund policy, so I got approval for to send it back, and will order the new one when it's available :)