The new OnePlus 6T is a minor upgrade to the OnePlus 6 which I reviewed a while back. While the new OnePlus 6T has improved features, its retail price is actually cheaper than OnePlus 6 at launch – S$898 for 6GB RAM 128GB storage to S$1088 for 8GB RAM 256GB storage.
The design is largely similar for both versions, but obviously the OnePlus 6T is in many ways cleaner-looking. The notch is reduced to a teardrop, and the fingerprint sensor is removed from the rear, embedded into the display itself. Even the 3.5mm headphone jack is removed.
For this review, I will jump straight into the user experience and skip all the software features, which you can read from the OnePlus 6 review itself.
Moving from the OnePlus 6 to 6T, the differences are visually hard to distinguish, but the upgrades are real: larger battery, larger screen, tougher Gorilla Glass, smaller notch, and a little heavier (plus, no 3.5mm headphone jack!). The camera algorithm is improved but existing owners will get the software update. In-display fingerprint sensor seems cool but not as practical, because you don’t know where the sensor is located on the screen until the indicator comes up. The unlock flow is definitely longer than a standard sensor. I also find the unlock speed marginally faster than the Huawei Mate 20 Pro, but nothing to be wowed at. From my review, the unlock speed varies and is not as consistent as the standard sensor.
The whole experience, to be honest, does not feel as buttery as the OnePlus 6. Perhaps it’s due to more apps installed. Technially-speaking, the OnePlus 6T is better than OnePlus 6, for sure, so I cannot explain. The camera shutter is laggy for most part, maybe because of the on-the-fly image processing.
OnePlus 6T camera features are not as fanciful as Huawei, but the images turn out well-exposed and pleasantly warm white balance. Portrait background blur looks natural and not exaggerated, Studio Lighting mode is also very subtle, so subtle that I didn’t realise that the facial lighting is tuned.
Night photos make use of long exposure to get the outcome. It can stabilise the landscape, but if human subject moves, then they will appear blur.
There are good reasons to buy the OnePlus 6T, but there are also equally valid reasons to go for OnePlus 6. I don’t fancy the in-display fingerprint sensor, while the improved Gorilla Glass does not matter to me. The smaller notch is too small a difference to pay for, and the missing 3.5mm headphone jack is too painful a price to pay. A new OnePlus 6 base model is below S$700, and you get most of the fantastic UI as the 6T. The newer model is definitely better on paper, but the OnePlus 6ew reduced price makes it all the more more attractive. Then again, OnePlus fans “never settle”.