The OnePlus 11 Is A Great $699 Android Phone — If You Can Live With Its Compromises

The OnePlus 11 Is A Great $699 Android Phone — If You Can Live With Its Compromises

When I reviewed the OnePlus 10 Pro last year, the one thing that really impressed me was that it was an alternative to the big dog. It's a more affordable alternative to the Samsung and Google PCs of the world than its high-end competition, with powerful performance, a great camera, great battery life, and a sleek design.

Enter the OnePlus 11, the successor to the 10 Pro (though the name isn't immediately clear). In the few weeks I've been using this device, I've found myself feeling the same way about it. It ticks most of the boxes on modern flagship smartphones and feels solid to use, such as the Galaxy S23+ or Pixel 7 Pro. However, this leads to some odd choices that make the experience a little less competitive. It's at least $100 cheaper than the previous 10 Pro.

So is the OnePlus 11 worth buying? Let's break it down

An affordable Android alternative

The OnePlus 11 is a great option for those looking for a flagship Android phone for at least $100 less than most of its competitors. However, given the disappointing user experience and lack of wireless charging, most people are better off sticking with the latest Pixel or Galaxy.

Look at this thing. It's hard to deny beauty when you see it, and the OnePlus 11 is just that: beautiful. My review unit comes in Evergreen, which is a bit more vibrant than the official images suggest. Also available in Titan Black for those who prefer plain and simple. (Interestingly, OnePlus uses a frosted finish for the Titan Black and a glossy back for the Evergreen, and I wish they'd used a frosted finish on both.)

OnePlus wanted to showcase "modern elegance" with this phone, and I think the company has achieved that. The glass back blends almost seamlessly with the aluminum frame and camera body, while the rounded sides and corners make the phone more comfortable. This device is also very simple. At 205 grams, it's lighter than the 240-gram iPhone 14 Pro Max and even lighter than the 212-gram Pixel 7 Pro.

On the bottom, there's a USB-C charging port (on the back), stereo speakers, a physical SIM tray (best way to implement SIM card support in a phone, Uh Uh Uh Apple ) and "series microphones." . There's also a notification slider on the right side that lets you switch between ring, vibrate and silent modes without turning on the phone. Last year's OnePlus 10T was all the rage, so I'm excited to see it return on this year's device.

Good display, strong performance and good feel

OnePlus has a 6.7-inch Super Liquid AMOLED display with Quad HD+ resolution (3216 x 1440) and a dynamic refresh rate of 120 Hz. What does all this mean for the average user? You get one of the best screens on a smartphone.

Large, submersible and easy to hold for a narrow aspect ratio. It can reach a maximum brightness level of 1300 nits, which is enough that you won't be embarrassed to look at your phone in direct sunlight. OnePlus has included support for Dolby Vision HDR, making the OnePlus 11 one of the first smartphones to integrate the technology. This means you can enjoy content processed with Dolby Vision HDR for richer colors and clarity, and you'll find it in abundance on streaming platforms like Netflix, Apple TV Plus, Hulu and HBO Max. the

And thanks to the 120Hz refresh rate, everything is smooth and smooth. If you're not familiar, a 120Hz refresh rate means that the screen refreshes 120 times per second. This is in contrast to most phone screens that refresh 60 times per second. This is a huge improvement in terms of language skills. OnePlus pioneered fast refresh rates, being one of the first companies to ship phones with a 90Hz refresh rate. This continues with the much anticipated OnePlus 11.

Inside the device, OnePlus packs the latest Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor. Depending on which model it has 128GB or 256GB of storage, 8GB or 16GB of RAM. I have the max 16GB/256GB model and I can tell you it works great. Dragging multiple apps, playing games, and doing work at the same time isn't ideal for these fine details. They handled everything I threw at them with ease.

We ran benchmarks on GeekBench to find out where the OnePlus 11 compares. Compared to the iPhone 14 Pro Max, the OnePlus device is separated, but on the multi-core front, it competes with the Galaxy S23 Ultra. Oh, and it beats the Google Pixel 7 Pro.

OnePlus includes a new Cryovelocity VC Cooling System made of crystalline graphene material to dissipate heat and keep your device cool while gaming. It's the biggest yet on a OnePlus phone, and I can safely say it's the most efficient. I never over tested the phone. It also helps performance because the phone doesn't have to throttle the chip at high temperatures.

The OnePlus 11 features a bionic vibration motor that significantly improves the device's vibration quality and haptic response. Typing on the keyboard, using quick shortcuts, and the subtle vibrations of various UI elements all feel stronger and more premium than other vibration engines. In terms of vibe and feel, the iPhone remains the leader, but the OnePlus 11 is not far behind. Other Android smartphones should take note of what OnePlus has done here.

When you hear about smartphone cameras, the three names in the game that usually stand out are Apple, Google, and Samsung. I'm here to tell you that it's time to add OnePlus to this list.

Full disclosure. I still think the company lags behind the 3 in terms of camera technology. However, the OnePlus 11 is undoubtedly the most capable system with its Hasselblad-tuned triple rear camera system.

There's a new 50-megapixel main camera with a slightly larger sensor and f/1.8 aperture. This helps the camera capture more light and detail in any situation, whether it's a sunny day or the middle of the night. I tested this sensor to see if it could compete with my iPhone 14 Pro Max and Pixel 7 Pro, and I was surprised that it did. Of course, there's a slight drop in the amount of detail that can be captured (I think it has something to do with the OnePlus pictures), but the device makes direct comparisons.

The camera still doesn't work with the Pixel 7 Pro at night, leaving my beloved phone in the dark. But it's still great if you want to shoot at night without losing your subject completely in the dark. Advanced OIS (also known as optical image stabilization) helps stabilize the camera, which is especially important for longer exposures at night.

The 48-megapixel, 115-degree ultra-wide camera is a noticeable drop-off from the main camera, but it's still good in daylight. Try not to take very wide angle night shots. they will fade quickly.

Then comes a 32MP telephoto lens with 2x optical zoom and up to 20x hybrid zoom. This is far behind other smartphones such as the iPhone 14 Pro, Pixel 7 Pro and Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra, which can boost up to 100 times.

But instead of zooming in, OnePlus focuses on delivering great portraits with its telephoto lens. These are easily some of the best portraits I've done. The background fades out as slowly as a full-sized DSLR, and I've never taken a terrible video of my subject due to post-processing. If you love taking photos with your smartphone, you'll love what the OnePlus 11 has to offer.

You might be wondering what the "Hasseblad" label on the back of the OnePlus 11 means. This is a continuation of OnePlus' partnership with the popular camera maker, which began in 2021 with the OnePlus 9 series. Hasselblad uses OnePlus' hardware and adjusts each image in turn to make your shot more appealing, for color reflection, contrast, highlights, and more.

If you're wondering if that makes a difference, at least I can tell you that it's not as big as OnePlus would like. It's a very capable camera, but it's hard to tell what additional tweaks Hasselblad has made. If anything good came out of this partnership, it's Hasselblad's Pro mode, which gives you complete control over the look of your photos. You can even shoot RAW photos, which is great for people who want to edit their photos later in a program like Photoshop.

Video quality is decent, though it falls short of the iPhone 14 Pro, which remains the smartphone video king. The 4K footage I shot with the OnePlus 11 was similar to the footage I shot with the Pixel 7 Pro, with better colors and fewer artifacts.

Long battery life and very fast charging

I am very impressed with the OnePlus 11 battery life. Packed in a large 5,000mAh cell, the OnePlus comfortably got me through 16 hours a day, leaving 40 to 45% charge overnight. In our battery test, we played a 4K video at 50% brightness before the phone shut down, lasting 21 hours and 36 minutes. For comparison, the Pixel 7 Pro lasted more than 15 hours, while the Galaxy S22+ lasted just under 14 hours. I can't remember the last time I had such good battery life on a OnePlus phone.

Of course, the big story isn't how long it lasts, but how quickly it can be charged. OnePlus offers 80W SuperVOOC fast charging for the OnePlus 11, which can charge your phone from zero to 100% in 30 minutes. It worked in our test, but only for 32 minutes. It takes only 13 minutes and 43 seconds to reach 50%.

These are some of the fastest charging speeds you'll find on any smartphone in the United States. In fact, it's only surpassed by OnePlus' own 10T smartphone, which includes 120W charging. It's faster than any iPhone, Galaxy or Pixel. Leaving your phone plugged in all the time can change your life with that charging speed.

OnePlus was once one of the best companies if you want a clean, simple and fast Android experience. Recently, the company moved away from this idea and released its loudest and most complex Android experience after integrating the software with sister company Oppo.

OxygenOS is notoriously frustrating and less fun now. OxygenOS 13, which is based on Android 13, is the latest version of the system. With the new nature of the company and the cloud-like aesthetic, the system is loaded with unnecessary effects, animations and applications (additional clock, calendar, photo gallery and other things related to Google applications). The result is an experience that feels like the opposite of OnePlus' "fast and smooth" mantra.

While on the phone, I couldn't wait to move on. The whole system feels so loosely optimized that it feels like battery life is valued more than performance. Despite the powerful Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip, 16GB of RAM and fast UFS 4.0 storage, the phone feels sluggish due to fragmented software.

As I navigated through menus, social media, and websites, I noticed that the interface became smoother and smoother until it moved smoothly. This appears to be a problem with the variable screen refresh rate, which cuts oxygen too quickly at the wrong time to save battery life. I've also noticed that apps don't stay active in the background as long as the phone has enough RAM.

That said, there seem to be common UI elements that make for smooth scrolling, even if you have to hang your finger back on the screen. It's seamless browsing in a web browser, except it's everywhere, not just vertical lists, but folders, settings, notification panels, and more.

In almost every aspect, be it performance, usability or design, OxygenOS falls far short of Samsung's One UI and the Google Pixel experience. It's not the same system as the popular OnePlus, and that's a shame.

Wireless charging is becoming the norm for flagship phones these days, so it's surprising that the OnePlus 11 doesn't have it. It was on last year's OnePlus 10 Pro, albeit up to 50W faster with OnePlus' own charger. Don't buy the OnePlus 11 if you rely heavily on wireless charging throughout the day.

Reading the speakers section of the OnePlus OnePlus 11 press materials, one would think that these speakers are much better than sliced ​​bread. In fact (we emphasize) they are very common.

OnePlus says the device's stereo speakers offer "excellent sound quality" and the premium acoustic build of a laptop. They also support Dolby Atmos, which further accelerates the company's commitment to integrating Dolby technology. From Morgan Wallen's "Last Night" and Frank Sinatra's "Summer Wind" to The Union's "Troublemakers, Pt. II” and “Mary Comes Along,” there was no one on these speakers. Every track sounded a little empty and muddy, especially at higher volumes.

Dolby Atmos support is good, but you'll get low quality for most content played on these speakers. I prefer the speakers over the Pixel 7 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max.

It's very soft and the size doesn't help

This is one of the smartest phones I've ever used. The back glass has a glossy finish that doesn't give you any glamour. Also likes to slide on tables or other flat surfaces that aren't completely flat. So expect to hold this phone a lot when you prop it up on curved armchairs and tables.

It also doesn't help that the OnePlus 11 is on the larger side. There's no optional model with a smaller screen, so you're stuck with a 6.7-inch panel that usually requires two hands to operate.

to sue

6.7-inch AMOLED display 1440 x 3216, 120 Hz

6.7-inch Super Retina XDR display 2796 x 1290, 120 Hz

6.7-inch OLED display 1440 x 3120, 120 Hz


Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2

Apple A16 Bionic

Google Tensor G2


8 GB / 16 GB

6 GB

12 GB


128 GB / 256 GB

128 GB / 256 GB / 512 GB / 1 TB

128 GB / 256 GB / 512 GB

Backup camera

50 MP main camera, 48 MP ultra-wide camera, 32 MP telephoto lens

48-megapixel main camera, 12-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera, 12-megapixel telephoto lens

50-megapixel wide-angle camera, 12-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera, 48-megapixel telephoto camera

Front camera

16 megapixels

12-megapixel TrueDepth camera

10.8 megapixels


6.42 x 2.92 x 0.33 inches, 7.23 ounces

5.81 x 2.81 x 0.31 inches, 7.27 ounces

6.4 x 3 x 0.3 inches, 7.5 ounces


Evergreen, Black Titan

Dark Purple, Gold, Silver, Space Black

Obsidian, snow, hazel

Price: Starting at $699 Starting at $1,099 Starting at $599

Despite its limitations, the OnePlus 11 is a great Android phone. For $699, you get a gorgeous AMOLED display, powerful specs, long battery life, and some of the best cameras on a OnePlus phone. If you want a premium smartphone but don't want to spend money on a flagship, this could be the phone.

I say "probably" because the trade-off here is very strange. Lack of wireless charging, buggy Android interface and underpowered speakers are some of the issues with the OnePlus 11. You're also dealing with a giant, squidgy design.

There are definitely better phones out there. The iPhone 14 (our favorite smartphone) and the Pixel 7 (on sale now) offer better camera and software experiences, while the Galaxy S23 is one of the fastest phones of the year. But here's the thing. anything off sale will cost you at least $100. Sometimes it's just not worth it, especially since phones like the OnePlus 11 bundle are so good. If you're determined not to spend more than $800 on your next phone, you might want to check out OnePlus' latest offering.

Important Phone Review Arrives [November 2017]

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