back to article Itchy-fingered OnePlus presses refresh, out pops value champ 3T

It may seem reckless for a manufacturer to replace its flagship after only five months with one that’s more expensive, but few buyers of the new OnePlus 3T will care very much. At £399, this phone scoops the prize for the best value top-end Android. And it’s even more ludicrously good value at £429 for a 128GB model. Consider …

  1. Unep Eurobats

    'The capacitive buttons ... make it vastly easier to operate the phone in the car'

    'it’s far easier to hit them without looking'

    Please tell me you're in an autonomous Uber.

    1. mkaibear

      Re: 'The capacitive buttons ... make it vastly easier to operate the phone in the car'

      >Please tell me you're in an autonomous Uber.


      You appear to have the impression that it's illegal to use a mobile phone in the car. It isn't. It's illegal to use a *hand-held* mobile phone in the car. Mounted on a cradle, left on the dashboard, sat in a pocket and controlled by your shiny watch - all of these are legal.

      As an example, my Moto Z sits on the dashboard connected to the car stereo. If I want to listen to music I reach out and gently caress the fingerprint sensor (which I can do without looking at the phone), then say "OK Google, play Bon Jovi". And it does.

      Perfectly legal and doesn't require looking at the phone or driving in an autonomous vehicle.

      1. Groaning Ninny

        Re: 'The capacitive buttons ... make it vastly easier to operate the phone in the car'

        Actually, still, please tell me you're not driving. Legal it may be, but safe?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: 'The capacitive buttons ... make it vastly easier to operate the phone in the car'

        Not quite correct, the law was changed a few years ago although very few people seem to to be aware of this.

        If you make or accept a phone call in a car while driving, whether with a hands free system or not, you can be charged with a moving vehicle offence (normally driving without due attention, but sometimes careless or even dangerous driving). This is why the police will often relieve you of your phone if you have been involved in an incident; they want a forensic lab to check to see if it was being used at the time of the fender-bender.

        1. djack

          Re: 'The capacitive buttons ... make it vastly easier to operate the phone in the car'

          That has always been the case, the law has not changed. Anything that distracts you enough so that you are not paying enough attention to driving - whether that be a phone call, fiddling with the radio or talking to the person in the passenger seat - is dangerous and can lead to a charge of driving without due care and attention. The hand-held mobile law is different as it is illegal even if it isn't obviously affecting yur driving at the time. I think that the penalties have changed recently though.

          1. PhilipN

            ... talking to the person in the passenger seat ..

            When I worked near Buck Place I saw some old biddie driving along The Mall busy chatting to her passenger just as if they were neighbours gossiping over the fence while hanging out washing. She sailed straight past the cop on point duty despite his raised hand - and despite also, when he saw what she was (not) doing, a loud whistle and a "STOP!". She was blissfully ignorant of the entire episode.

            The cop turned his head around just long enough to clock her number.

            I doubt whether Gladys was taking Vera on joyrides through London for much longer after that.

      3. Bogle

        Re: 'The capacitive buttons ... make it vastly easier to operate the phone in the car'

        I suspect the downvotes are for Bon Jovi. Of course, if *this* gets downvoted then we have genuine Bon Jovi fans in the comments.

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: 'The capacitive buttons ... make it vastly easier to operate the phone in the car'

        I look forward to seeing you on the road then, because if I see you utilising any form of handheld electronic device (as it's defined), I'll be stopping you to point out to you the error of your ways, be that verbally with my discretion, or 3 points and a £100 fine.

        Same goes for taxi drivers always on their systems. It does not matter if it's cradle mounted, it is still a handheld device - the fact it was not in your hand is irrelevant. Point in case, guy got done for using his Bluetooth handset whilst driving. He was still fucking around with the controls and was still paying no heed to the road - so much so he failed to see us beside him for around 200m staring at him.

        I've been at plenty of RTC's which has been linked back to the use of a phone. SImple facts don't lie - using anything in the vehicle that distracts you visually or mentally from the scene in front of you, is dangerous.

        Don't do it.

        1. a_a

          Re: 'The capacitive buttons ... make it vastly easier to operate the phone in the car'

          Do they train the supercilious arrogance in to you or do you get selected because it comes to you naturally?

          Given your last paragraph it should be obvious that people aren't respecting you, your job, or your message and that perhaps you should consider an alternative attitude to try and connect with the public.

          The last major public body in desperate need of total reform, hopefully the recently announced minimum education requirement is only the start.

          1. Terry 6 Silver badge

            Re: 'The capacitive buttons ... make it vastly easier to operate the phone in the car'


            Was that just trolling or do you really think that a copper who has to clear up the mess when some idiot causes a nasty pile-up because he/she can't stay off the phone while moving a heavy chunk of steel along a crowded road is saying these things for some kind of personal gratification? FFS. It's dangerous, illegal, unnecessary and totally self-centred to be focussed on a phone instead of driving. And a copper who catches you at it ought to damn well throw the book at you.

          2. Triggerfish

            Re: 'The capacitive buttons ... make it vastly easier to operate the phone in the car' @a_a

            Do they train the supercilious arrogance in to you or do you get selected because it comes to you naturally?

            Rather amusing considering the tone of your post. Try talking to a few people who have cleared up RTA's they are full of lovely stories with anecdotes like; "and then I walked down the road, picked up his head and put it in a bucket", or "I totally froze because for a moment I thought that was my 8yr old daughter dead when I turned up to the accident".

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: 'The capacitive buttons ... make it vastly easier to operate the phone in the car'


          Section 2. 110 (1):

          No person shall drive a motor vehicle on a road if he is using—(a)a hand-held mobile telephone; or(b)a hand-held device of a kind specified in paragraph (4).

          Paragraph 4:

          A device referred to in paragraphs (1)(b), (2)(b) and (3)(b) is a device, other than a two-way radio, which performs an interactive communication function by transmitting and receiving data.

          Paragraph 6b defines a "two way radio":

          “two-way radio” means any wireless telegraphy apparatus which is designed or adapted—

          (i)for the purpose of transmitting and receiving spoken messages; and

          (ii)to operate on any frequency other than 880 MHz to 915 MHz, 925 MHz to 960 MHz, 1710 MHz to 1785 MHz, 1805 MHz to 1880 MHz, 1900 MHz to 1980 MHz or 2110 MHz to 2170 MHz

          So, anything that is transmitting voice NOT over the 2G/3G/4G bands could be argued to be a two-way radio, not a mobile phone - and that includes a bluetooth headset (since a headset definitely isn't a hand-held mobile telephone)

          I'm all for taking dangerous drivers off the road, but telling people they can't use any electronics at all isn't a great idea when the law states otherwise. It just puts people's backs up.... In fact that's the same exemption that allows emergency services to use a two way radio/CB whilst driving.

          Anyone not in control of their car should be done under the relevant laws, obvs, but it's not an offence simply to be using a bluetooth headset.

          I'd also argue you should be able to legally "use" a cradle mounted phone with pure voice commands, although the law is sufficiently outdated not to mention that at all.

        3. mkaibear

          Re: 'The capacitive buttons ... make it vastly easier to operate the phone in the car'


          So your definitions of "utilising" and "hand-held" are somewhat broader than the general advice given to UK police, and incorporates any use of any device which could at some point be hand-held, and does not require the device in question to be in the hand at the point of use? That's a bit suspect, I'm afraid.

          If you were actually a police officer you'd be aware that the law in the UK allows for someone to take or make a phone call by pushing a button on their mobile phone, so long as they aren't distracted by it. That law has been widely interpreted to allow someone to use voice control on their phone if it is supported by the phone or the hands-free system (whichever one they are using). Although I'm not aware of any relevant case law about someone pressing a button to unlock their phone in order to allow them to make a call / voice control music / etc, the general legal principle is well established - so I wouldn't see any issue with arguing that the act of pushing a single button on a mobile phone to activate the voice control system did not contravene the relevant portions of the Act.

          Best of luck if "you" or an actual police officer tries to take this to court, though!

  2. Timmy B Silver badge

    Really like my OP3

    I bought my OP3 before they went up in price and for the money it's been the best phone I have had. They, so far, have been bang on with ROM updates too. I am running the second community beta of N and it's really good. I don't really see the reason for the update to the 3T but it's nothing that worries me at all.

    Highly recommended and as long as they can keep the costs reasonable I can see me getting a OP4 when they come out.

  3. Jim 48

    "The capacitive buttons alone caused me prefer using the OnePlus to just about any other Android I’ve used this year. Manufacturers removed these in a spasm of penny-pitching a couple of years ago, but they make it vastly easier to operate the phone in the car, I find. Curiously these never light up"

    Unless things have changed for the 3T, there is a setting to have them light up, but annoyingly they only light up when you have used one. I'd much prefer that they were on whenever the screen is on. And agreed about car use, the fingerprint reader as a physical home button makes life much easier and less distracting.

    As an aside, apparently the back camera now uses a sapphire instead of whatever is in the standard 3.

    I'm glad I got my 3 when I did as I don't need the extra features and wouldn't have spent that the extra for a 3T.

    Edit: I've just noticed that you included a screenshot of the Buttons settings page and it shows the the Backlight option for the capacitive keys.

  4. Nash

    Great phone BUT......

    I have just upgraded to this phone, i've always been a HTC fan, but since O2 stopped doing HTC's i had to get the closest alternative....up until month ago, i had never heard of "onePlus" had really look at what the phone had to offer. It Looks almost like the HTC One M9 i upgraded from, it has more storage and the battery life is amazing, i can comfortably get 2 days out of a single charge.


    It doesn't use a standard MicroUSB Charger, it uses its own "lightening port" the Micro USB Charger i have at work, in the car and at home were rendered useless.......until i found Cheap Knock off Micro USB to Lightening port convertord on ebay for £3....they work, but don't charge at lightning speed.

    Overall, amazed with the phone, but disappointed with the use of a proprietary charger....

    1. Timmy B Silver badge

      Re: Great phone BUT......

      The port is a new USB C type that will eventually be on everything. It's a standard unlike the "lightening port". An emerging standard but still a standard. As a whole load of juice is pumped down the cable they limit the ones you can use with dash charging so as not to cause Samsung style conflagrations. You can get third party ones that are cheaper and work - have a look on XDA developers forum in the oneplus 3 section and I think some are mentioned there.You can use any USB C cable and charger but it'll be slower.

    2. MattMarcSmith

      Re: Great phone BUT......

      Pretty sure it's just a USB-C connection...?

  5. joewilliamsebs

    But I want it NOW!

    I ordered one last week to replace my aging Note 3, but won't receive it until January the 5th. I feel like a kid waiting for Christmas.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    In this hands on review we learn all about the buttons and camera but there is not a word about call quality. Why not? This is supposed to be a phone but is treated as a data using device.

    I assume the phone function was crap and will be dropped in the next version.

    1. JDX Gold badge

      Go read a review of the 3, since the 3T just tweaks the specs a bit.

    2. Timmy B Silver badge

      Call quality is fine. Cellular and wifi reception are good too. You can stop worrying now.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Thanks Timmy. Would it have so difficult for that information to have been in the review?

    3. Paul Slater

      Oh do grow up

    4. Rob_K

      Call quality

      A very valid comment, considering that one of the few things I like about my OnePlus One is its mediocre call quality.

  7. Dapprman
    Thumb Up

    Great Phones

    I've had mine for about 4 months now. It's not perfect, but I don't regret buying it one bit. There were some initial annoynaces but their own forums had answers for most of them and a certain amount seemed to be the phone not picking up items (such as MP3s) until 3rd party apps did the same.

    I did think something fundamental was missing, but after 4 months i can't remember what so it can't have been that important.

    On charing - I've found that when charging from a USB port it's no slower than any other phone and when using a plus adapter (such as LG, Samsung, etc provide for you to plus a USB cable in to) the charge rate is again comparable to any other phone, just not as fast as their 'dash charge'.

    The only thing I'm not a fan of is the slider - in principal I like it but it feels like a half hearted implementation that trips over itself from time to time. Also you can not set it to be mute but allow music to be played as an option, or specific apps as opposed to the preset list (unless recently changed).

    1. edge_e

      Re: Also you can not set it to be mute but allow music to be played

      Currently listening to music, doesn't seem to matter which position the slider is in , it doesn't stop.

      Regarding app notifications, you can set individual apps to have priority notifications and put the switch to the centre position.

    2. Timmy B Silver badge

      Re: Great Phones

      Spot on about the slider. I wish it just had "normal, vibrate, and silent" as the three settings.

  8. TheProf Silver badge

    Again with the parallax

    "The camera can shoot in RAW mode, so you can remove the parallax effect that’s ubiquitous in phone cameras."

    It's isn't a parallax effect, it's not just phone cameras, and it's got bugger all to do with shooting jpegs!

    Next time: Ranting about people using trifecta incorrectly.

  9. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge

    Interesting phone

    May well consider one once my HTC One M8 wears out (still going strong though)

  10. Buzzword

    software OIS??

    There's no such thing. Optical Image Stabilization is a physical thing; any adjustments done in software are usually called Digital Image Stabilization.

  11. Gio Ciampa


    Par for the course I thought...

  12. Trixr

    Would love to get one...

    But unfortunately it (in any of the three variations) doesn't support the primary 4G bands used by the mobile services I'm on in Oz and NZ (two different providers).

    I could live without the storage expansion, but having to use 4G bands with less coverage is a deal-breaker.

    I think they cover the bands used by Voda, but I'd set my phone on fire rather than use them.

    1. Terry 6 Silver badge

      Re: Would love to get one...

      Trixr I think Samsung covered that one for you.

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