back to article OnePlus 6T: Tasteful, powerful – and much cheaper than a flagship

What if Huawei used OnePlus's Oxygen UI, I found myself musing recently. Wouldn't it be the perfect package? Huawei's amazing RF performance, and bleeding-edge tech, with a UI that didn't actually suck? Specs Display: AMOLED 6.41-inch (6.24-inch for the rounded corners); 1080 x 2340 pixels, 402 ppi, Gorilla Glass 6 Innards …

  1. Duncan Macdonald Silver badge

    No headphone socket - no sale

    The Pocophone F1 is much cheaper - basically the same innards and does have a headphone socket.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: No headphone socket - no sale

      I agree, losing the headphone socket is a real own goal. I'm quite glad I didn't wait for the 6T, the 6 will do me just fine for the next few years.

      1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: No headphone socket - no sale

        I agree, losing the headphone socket is a real own goal

        Not for me - I haven't used wired headphones in years. Other than linking the phone to the car, it's the only thing I use bluetooth for.

        (I'm aware that this is an indivdual choice)

    2. Gordon 10 Silver badge

      Re: No headphone socket - no sale

      Same innards? Not really - no NFC on F1. Frankly I'd rather buy a bluetooth headset than lose Android pay.

      1. JohnFen Silver badge

        Re: No headphone socket - no sale

        I guess I can see that, if NFC is a thing you value. Personally, NFC is another thing that I'd never use.

        1. Dave 126 Silver badge

          Re: No headphone socket - no sale

          Galaxy S9 is around £550 now, and gives you headphone socket, waterproofing, wireless charging, SD card, better camera, better screen, no notch.

          Also you can buy it from a legitimate UK retailer who will give a you a VAT invoice which OnePlus won't do.

          1. NonSSL-Login

            Re: No headphone socket - no sale

            Still have a Oneplus 1 and a OnePlus 3T but the increasing cost and a few annoying Oneplus quirks (no automated quiet times because 'the settings may interfere with the hardware DND switch', battery issues after updates, no Daydream support even though the chipset supported it, among other things) and the increasing price made me think twice about getting another OnePlus.

            Ended up getting a s9+ with 256gb of storage for such an awesome deal it worked out cheaper than the OnePlus. Obviously I had to de-bloat it with package manager as I prefer the cleaner OP experience and generally dislike Samsung, but can honestly say im happy with the performance of the phone. The waterproofing and camera quality are worth paying that little bit extra for, even though I actually paid less.

            I think my love affair with OP is over now. Loved their first phone but now they are becoming similar prices as other flagships and all have quirks which annoy me to some extent and have terrible support. Hurts my pride to say I like a Samsung phone too, compared to the pride of having an OPO with cyanogenmod as standard.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: No headphone socket - no sale

            "you can buy [the Galaxy S9] from a legitimate UK retailer who will give a you a VAT invoice which OnePlus won't do"

            If that's an issue then you can buy your OnePlus from Carphone Warehouse instead of direct (other retailers may be available).

        2. K Silver badge

          Re: No headphone socket - no sale

          @JoshFen Yep spot-on.. Personally I use Android Pay every day for travelling around London. To be honest, 6 months ago, I'd never even thought of using, today though its a key requirement of any phone..

      2. Michael Habel Silver badge

        Re: No headphone socket - no sale

        Same innards? Not really - no NFC on F1. Frankly I'd rather buy a bluetooth headset than lose Android pay.

        Then do I have some bad news for you...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: No headphone socket - no sale

          I spotted some OLED screen burn artifacts on my Samsung over the weekend, and after a painless online chat I've been advised that they'll fit a new screen free of charge in a few hours in a city near me.

        2. Gordon 10 Silver badge
          FAIL

          Re: No headphone socket - no sale

          @michael. Thats just a rebrand from Android Pay to Google Pay. No change to the functionality, just happened on the last app upgrade - it was seamless.

    3. J27

      Re: No headphone socket - no sale

      Also, no warranty or support. With OnePlus you get 1 year warranty & 2 years guaranteed of major updates + 1 year of security updates.

      Yes, you're paying more, but you're getting something for that money. I don't want to deal with the issues of a Chinese market phone ever again.

      1. JohnFen Silver badge

        Re: No headphone socket - no sale

        "Yes, you're paying more, but you're getting something for that money."

        I don't care about warranty and support, but I do care about the loss of important features. I'm certainly not going to pay a premium for a phone that doesn't, at a minimum, do at least what my current phone does for me.

  2. Timmy B Silver badge

    Will skip this - but will get 7 I expect.

    I'm perfectly happy with my 5T. It's working fine. Battery lasts well. Firmware updates regularly. What's not to like.

    1. J27

      Re: Will skip this - but will get 7 I expect.

      I have one of those too, I'm keeping mine until I break it or the battery dies. Great phone.

  3. DrXym Silver badge

    Dumb dumb dumb

    Dropping the headphone jack was a stupid metoo decision. How much real estate did they save from the measure? How many cents did it save? The answer to both is "minimal".

    This was an opportunity for them to say "we're lead by what our customers need and want, not by the whims of the market to save a few pennies". They blew it.

    1. JDX Gold badge

      Re: Dumb dumb dumb

      I disparage the people who rail about SD support and removable batteries but I just don't get the demise of 3.5mm. It's a ubiquitous standard that works incredibly well and has done since the Walkman (and before). We know that voluntary use of wireless 'phones has not gone mainstream - they aren't removing the socket because everyone has stopped using 3.5mm, everyone stops using 3.5mm because it's removed.

      I use multiple devices (phone, iPad, other tablet, PC) with my earphones and while some of these support BlueTooth, not all do... and in my experience BlueTooth accessories HATE being shared between devices. So I'll have to dick about pairing/unpairing devices and continually find my earphones aren't working because they decided to pair with my iPad instead of my phone, etc.

      1. m0rt Silver badge

        Re: Dumb dumb dumb

        "I disparage the people who rail about SD support and removable batteries"

        Really? Disparage? What on earth for? Just because your use case doesn't mandate the necessity of those things...

        Sensible requests from my perspective, as an Android user who also has a mac and distrusts cloud storage for anything important/sensitive.

        We agree on the headphone jack, however.

        1. JDX Gold badge

          Re: Dumb dumb dumb

          >Really? Disparage? What on earth for? Just because your use case doesn't mandate the necessity of those things...

          Because these small minority of people continually rant and rail Apple et al won't build their devices around their specific needs. The VAST majority of users do not want removable storage or battery, El Reg is in no way representative of the wider world.

          Whereas, regular normal people DO want to use 3.5mm headphones. OnePlus even have the data showing this.

      2. JohnFen Silver badge

        Re: Dumb dumb dumb

        "I disparage the people who rail about SD support and removable batteries"

        Why? Those are things that are very good and useful, like the audio jack. Also like the audio jack, they are things for which there is currently no adequate substitute.

        1. Dave 126 Silver badge

          Re: Dumb dumb dumb

          The "it doesn't have removable storage!" comments have been remarkably constant in frequency and nature since the days of phones only having 4-8 GB of internal storage.

          I can only conclude that no amount of storage will satisfy some people, and I wonder what they're doing with it, how they back it up, or how they possibly lived in the days when 20GB of spinning rust was as much as you could keep in one pocket.

          1. David Given

            Re: Dumb dumb dumb

            You've obviously never had to transfer large numbers of files on and off a phone! Removable storage is mainly useful because it's *removable* --- meaning, I can take the card out and stick it in a fast PC reader.

            Yes, modern phones have adequate amounts of internal storage (although you can still quickly run out if you want to, e.g., load up with completely legitimate films for a long flight), but having removable storage adds so much more flexibility.

            1. Ogi

              Re: Dumb dumb dumb

              > Removable storage is mainly useful because it's *removable* --- meaning, I can take the card out and stick it in a fast PC reader.

              Indeed, I do that all the time to move photos/videos taken with the camera off the phone and onto my PC.

              It is also really useful for migrating to a new phone. All my personal stuff is on the SD card already, all I have to do is click "export contact list to sd card" (and if I feel like, export my installed apps to the SD card as well).

              Then stick the SD card in my new phone, import contact list and apps, and done. All my data is already there.

              It isn't really for the extra storage, as most phones have decent internal storage. The nice thing however is that you can take as many photos/videos as you want, and if you fill up the SD card, the phone keeps working. You can even temporarily switch to internal memory as a reserve area, so you can carry on taking photos/videos of the event, while being aware that you need to empty it out to the PC when next possible.

              Nothing worse than filling up the phones internal memory, and then you have to delete stuff before you can use the phone again.

              Needless to say, I only buy phones with removable SD card, sim and battery (and a headphone jack), so most of the "top end" market doesn't cater to me.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Dumb dumb dumb

                not that i'm questioning the usefulness of what ur describing but they sound like edge cases to me.

                are you switching phones so often that the 'i can switch my sd card between them' is genuinely a feature? or is it nice to have on that odd occasion you switch phones every other year when u upgrade?

                similarly with the 'running out of space on my internal storage' use case. just how frequently are you filling it up that you need to switch storage? again it seems like an edge case that can easily be remedied with backups off your phone every now and then.

                i'm genuinely curious about the need for sd cards in modern phones with 64GB+ storage. are you guys really copying that volume of data on and off your phones that often that it's a such a chore? what exactly is this multi gigabyte data that people are capturing so frequently on their phones?? i understand that hd and 4k cameras are now built in... but are you really capturing that much footage so frequently that you genuinely need to switch cards? or could you simply benefit from the occassional backup every other month?

                for the content creators out there - i figure removable storage is an absolute must. but they're using proper camera devices for that, surely?

                1. JohnFen Silver badge

                  Re: Dumb dumb dumb

                  "are you guys really copying that volume of data on and off your phones that often that it's a such a chore?"

                  Yes.

                  "what exactly is this multi gigabyte data that people are capturing so frequently on their phones??"

                  The music I carry with me, mostly, but also document collections, and large datasets of various sorts. Oh, and I also run a webserver on my phone that I use to quickly distribute information to others. This isn't data captured on my phone, this is data I want to access on my phone, or data I'm moving to a different place.

                  1. JDX Gold badge

                    Re: Dumb dumb dumb

                    >Oh, and I also run a webserver on my phone that I use to quickly distribute information to others

                    Well clearly then everyone needs SD. This is a very common use for a phone.

                    So, you can't get USB->Ethernet adapters for phones? I suppose I'd assumed phones would support USB3 these days anyway but maybe they don't.

                2. Down not across

                  Re: Dumb dumb dumb

                  are you switching phones so often that the 'i can switch my sd card between them' is genuinely a feature? or is it nice to have on that odd occasion you switch phones every other year when u upgrade?

                  It is not always case of how often either. I had a phone break when it dropped and hit ground in a bad way. Luckily I had any personal data, photos, Keepass database and such on the SD card. Get new phone and put the card in, wait for Google Play to redownload apps and everything was back.

                  So yes I am definitely in the "no SD card - no sale" camp.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Dumb dumb dumb

            If you are trying to sell handsets to a company that has any idea about security no SD card slot is a plus.

            You dont want your dozy employees saving files to the SD card they didn't encrypt and then losing the phone.

            Then there is the data squirrel that seems to think every document on a company private cloud belongs to them and may have a use one day.

            You need to make it as difficult as possible for these bozo's.

            1. JohnFen Silver badge

              Re: Dumb dumb dumb

              A company may have solid reasons why they'd want the phones they issue to their employees to have limited capabilities. That doesn't mean that we should accept similarly limited capabilities for our personal phones, though.

          3. Michael Habel Silver badge

            Re: Dumb dumb dumb

            I spluged a bit, and got the 40GiB's of spining fruity goodness back in the day. Might be worth looking though it again... If I can ever find the Cables for the wretched thing. but, year the iPod was about the only thing (Cr)apple ever managed to get somewhat right.*

            *Some what, in that you could only... (And, probably to this day to boot!), use it with iTunes. Cause you know Drag & Drop, was for the dirty WinXP Plebs.

          4. JohnFen Silver badge

            Re: Dumb dumb dumb

            "I can only conclude that no amount of storage will satisfy some people, and I wonder what they're doing with it, how they back it up"

            And what hard limit for storage do you think should satisfy everyone? Last I checked, different people had different needs, and remoaveable storage is an easy and satisfactory way of being able to accommodate everyone.

            For the record, I use the bulk of my storage for two things: to move very large datasets, and to hold the music that I listen to. If I couldn't use my phone for those things, I'd have to carry Yet Another Device, which is something that I'm trying hard to not do.

    2. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

      Re: Dumb dumb dumb

      I must confess general ignorance as I don't use headphones, but surely a purchase of a 3.5mm to USB-C adapter (£10 on you-know-who) solves the problem?

      1. JohnFen Silver badge

        Re: Dumb dumb dumb

        I suppose it "solves" the problem in one sense, but it creates an entirely new problem in return. Those adapters are terrible and not a workable solution at all for me.

      2. David Paul Morgan

        Re: Dumb dumb dumb

        comes in the box - same as the pixel 3

      3. JDX Gold badge

        Re: surely a purchase of a 3.5mm to USB-C adapter

        I can't see that working well when it's in my jeans pocket?

        Also there's the issue of charging while using. Not a problem for me but surely common.

  4. Alan Sharkey

    My 5 is still good

    I've had the OP 5 since June 2017 and it's still working fine and being updated. I may go for an OP7 if thee's enough new stuff to justify the cost.

    1. Boothy

      Re: My 5 is still good

      Still got a 3 here, on 8.0 and patched level Sep 2018.

      Still quick and working fine.

      Only noticeable degradation is the battery, but it still lasts over a day between charges, even 2 days with light use.

    2. Tom Wood

      Re: My 5 is still good

      My 3T is still going strong, as is my wife's 3 (though hers is on its fourth screen courtesy of the Nationwide's insurance policy).

    3. jmch Silver badge

      Re: My 5 is still good

      I think that phones have already a couple of years ago passed the threshold of vastly diminishing returns. I have a Samsung Galaxy S6, which was the flagship model 3 1/2 years ago.

      Sure, newer phones have faster processors, sharper screens, better cameras, wireless charging.... but the gains are marginal and the new features aren't 'must-haves' (and in some cases like audio jack, the newer phones are going backwards).

      When I got my phone it was already over 1 year old model picked up for around £300. If I had to replace it, I completely fail to see the compulsion of spending north of £500 for a new phone as opposed to £££ less for a model that's a year or two old but still offering more functionality and performance than I could ever imagine needing. £500-£600 for a flagship model a few years ago was already steep, but maybe justifiable for someone using the processing power/screen for games or amateur photographers who wanted a really good on-the-go snapper. But £700 to over a grand for a phone that's only marginally better than something that cost £300 2 years ago is batshit mental

  5. James 51 Silver badge

    You can get a dual sim S9 sim free from amazon for £470 for £27 a month with no upfront fee from car phone warehouse. It isn't as good value as it appears to be.

    1. Gordon 10 Silver badge

      I agree. Not sure the UI makes the several £100 quid difference over the 2 or 3 similarly spec'd Huawei's.

      Plus you at 6.41" you need giant man hands to use it properly.

      1. richy987

        Before the OnePlus 6T I used to own a OnePlus 2, which has a 5,5 inch display opposed to the 6,4 inch of the 6T, but you know what: it has the exact same width (okay, 0.1 mm less wide...) but is only 5.7 mm longer, so apparently you had problems with the 2 too, I presume?

        I for one think it's amazing you have so much more screen estate for a phone with almost the same dimensions!

  6. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

    Blackberry Hub services too thirsty?

    On my Sony the entire thing uses less battery than just gmail, which I very soon disabled.

  7. David Nash Silver badge
    Facepalm

    that and the space vacated by the headphone jack are put to good use

    Not as good as using it for a headphone jack would have been.

    1. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

      Re: that and the space vacated by the headphone jack are put to good use

      Sharp just announced a new model. It looks a bit odd - a top and bottom notch - but it is smaller than the current Sony Compact, has a 5.2 inch 120Hz IZGO screen, an 845, a 3.5mm jack, an SD slot, and is IP68 rated. It also has a sensible plastic back.

      Apprently it won't be sold outside Japan which is simply annoying, I don't care what it looks like, but if they can do it why not others?

  8. Ben Rose
    Megaphone

    Past meets future

    I bought one of these on launch day, my 3T was due an upgrade anyway.

    The headphone thing is obviously subjective but I don't see the big problem here, just another thing for people to moan about. There's an adapter in the box, plug your old headphones in if you need to. If you're out and about you don't need the USB-C port for charging and if you're at home you don't need to use your headphones for music. People argue about the quality being less over bluetooth but if you really care about audio quality you wouldn't be using the headphone jack in a phone anyway...you'd have a proper high end music player.

    Moving on, the biggest battery ever is truly superb and, despite being a heavy phone user, it just runs and runs - helped massively by Android Pie optimisation.

    Talking of which, BlackBerry devices don't run on Android Pie yet and has a big history of being utterly useless on Android OS newer than their own - I had a problem with Nougat for ages until they release KeyOne. This is far more likely a BlackBerry/Pie issue than anything to do with Oneplus.

    When the battery does run down, the Fast Charging (can't call it Dash now...Amazon copyright) easily gives you a day's charge in half an hour. I've only charged mine when I'm in the shower so far and it never needs any more than that.

    Screen based fingerprint sensor is slower than 3T but face unlock is instant so I don't care - fingerprint plenty quick enough for banking apps etc and its relocation has made the screen real estate much more useful.

    Camera isn't as good as other phones that cost £££s more, no surprise. It is however massively better than the 3T and now takes decent photos at night along with being good at close ups.

    All in, a great purchase - another guy in my office has already bought one and I'm going to buy a second for my wife.

    1. Timmy B Silver badge

      Re: Past meets future

      Cheers, Ben.

      I went 3 to 5T so I'm 6 months behind you. I simply can't fault OP for their phones.

      1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: Past meets future

        I was going to go for a OP6 but got put off by the price (I had a OP3 before). I ended up getting an Honor 10 - I use Nova Launcher so don't really care about the look and feel of EMUI.

        The one thing that does bug me about the H10 is that it keeps popping up notification about the Huawei Cloud. The date I get an account there[1] is about the same as the heat-death of the universe..

        [1] Needing an account on one mass-intrusive entity (Google) is bad enough. If the iPhones were more reasonable in price for a new-ish one I'd go back to Apple.

        1. JohnFen Silver badge

          Re: Past meets future

          "The one thing that does bug me about the H10 is that it keeps popping up notification about the Huawei Cloud"

          Ugh. That alone is reason enough to replace the ROM with a reasonable one. If that's not possible, then it would be a good reason to return the device for a refund.

    2. tiggity Silver badge

      Re: Past meets future

      Dont think you know all use case.. other half uses headphones to listen to phone while charging -in bed. They are insomniac (I am not!) and so use headphones to stop sound waking me (as right choice of music can help them get back to sleep). Given use of music to sleep, then phones without charging (i.e. the crappy adapter) would be useless as if OH falls to sleep while music listening then phone will lose charge.

      .. Also advantage is standard headphones as cheap as chips, so if get damaged by in bed sleep movement, cheap to replace.

      A weird use case. not typical (though you will find a good number of insomniacs use relaxing sound methods to try and aid sleep), but shows you cannot base everything on your own use case only..

      1. Ben Rose
        Megaphone

        Re: Past meets future

        tiggity - I don't charge my phone in bed, i never even charge my phone to full. It significantly reduces the lifetime of a non-replaceable battery.

        Your wife can charge her phone before bed and listen to music all night and there will still be plenty of charge in the morning. She can charge it again whilst she's in the shower if she needs to but it won't run out and she simply doesn't need to charge and listen at the same time.

        Charging your phone overnight is a dated practise and precisely why dash charging was created. You can get an unfeasible amount of charge in the phone in a very short time and it allows you to just charge when you need to and not shorten the life of your device by hanging it off a cable all the time.

        Why anybody who struggles to sleep would choose to wire themselves to a phone which, in turn, was wired to the power is beyond me. If ever there was a use case for a pair of wireless earbuds, this is it.

    3. JohnFen Silver badge

      Re: Past meets future

      "The headphone thing is obviously subjective but I don't see the big problem here"

      That's because you don't have a use case for it. For those of us that do, it's a big enough issue that it prevents us from buying a device without it.

      "There's an adapter in the box, plug your old headphones in if you need to."

      Adapters suck mightily, and are not a reasonable substitute.

      "if you're at home you don't need to use your headphones for music"

      You don't, but I know a number of people who do.

      1. Ben Rose

        Re: Past meets future

        JohnFen,

        My primary headphones are a pair of Bose QC12 - they're old but still work just fine so I've no reason to replace them.

        They're wired and came with a cable about a yard long. I used to plug them into my 3T, as a London commuter I use them for several hours a day.

        Now I've added the adapter for my 6T - it means the cable is about a metre long instead. I can still hear my music, I can still listen just as I did before.

        People are moaning about something that just isn't a problem - just try it.

        1. Dave 126 Silver badge

          Re: Past meets future

          Xperia phones used to have a nice feature to stop charging automatically when 90% charge was reached. Apparently there's a now a 3rd party app for phones that have compatible hardware and have been rooted.

          1. Baldrickk Silver badge

            Re: Past meets future

            If you're out and about you don't need the USB-C port for charging and if you're at home you don't need to use your headphones for music.

            What about when I'm in the car on a long trip, with the sat nav on and want to play music through my stereo?

            Need to charge my phone and plug it in for sound - no Bluetooth audio in my car

            1. Is It Me

              Re: Past meets future

              You can get a splitter that will allow this, but from reviews they don't work with all phones.

            2. Charles 9 Silver badge

              Re: Past meets future

              Bluetooth-to-Aux adapters are easy to find. Some even plug direct into car power sockets. I use a Bluetooth FM transmitter as my car's tape deck is dead and is 2003 (pre-Aux).

        2. JohnFen Silver badge

          Re: Past meets future

          "People are moaning about something that just isn't a problem - just try it."

          What makes you think I haven't?

          People are moaning about something that is totally a problem for them. That it's not a problem for you is great for you, but doesn't mean that it's not an issue for others.

          The main reason that I make a lot of noise about this is because the entire industry seems to be going the direction of stripping out important functionality like this, which is making smartphones into products that simply don't meet my needs.

    4. JMcL

      Re: Past meets future

      "There's an adapter in the box, plug your old headphones in if you need to. If you're out and about you don't need the USB-C port for charging and if you're at home you don't need to use your headphones for music"

      Deal breaker for me. USB-C port=fragile and device is hosed if it's damaged, 3.5mm port=robust (generally) I don't want to have something hanging out of my data/charging port when I've got the phone in my pocket. The more bits you put in a chain, the greater the chance of failure. Headphone technology is mature and there's something there to suit all needs and budgets - set of earbuds for a tenner, fine, want to spend a grand? be my guest.

      Bluetooth headphones on the other hand are frequently meh from an audio quality perspective, more often than not lead to a pairing dance, and are yet another thing that needs charged (and are usually low in charge just when you want to use the damn things). The other thing about devices with batteries - the batteries are usually toast after a couple of years and are non-replaceable. Throw the headphones away, and buy new ones - kerchinggg. Meanwhile my 25 year old Sennheisers are still excellent and usable interchangeably with my phone, amp, etc

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The origian is actually partly Swedish

    You said that if you didn't know, you could think it came from Sweden. Actually, Carl Pei is born in Sweden.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_Pei

  10. BGatez

    L500

    Am I the only one who still thinks a phone for the price of a serviceable laptop is too steep?

    1. holmegm

      Re: L500

      No, you are not the only one.

      And just to head it off, I spend more time with my shoes too, but I don't pay that much for those either ...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: L500

      IMHO, I think that you are paritially right. However given that most Millenials have their whole life on their phones... I can understand it.

      I don't have my whole life on any one device but there again, I'm not a Millenial but a Grumpy old fart.

    3. NonSSL-Login

      Re: L500

      I wish decent phones were cheaper but I make use of the phones CPU and memory massively so im glad it fits in my pocket and with me at all times.

      Laptops keep tearing my trousers when I try and stuff them in my pockets.

    4. Tom Wood

      Re: L500

      I use my phone more than my personal laptop. It is more powerful than said laptop and crams that power into a smaller package... No wonder its more expensive.

  11. JDX Gold badge

    Huawei alternative?

    I was thinking about upgrading recently from my 1+3 due to various problems (not sure if the hardware or Android or OxygenOS). Offers on various Huawei devices on Amazon caught my eye, around the £300 mark. The one consistent negative I see is the UI, not sure I can cope with that!

    1. philnc

      Re: Huawei alternative?

      As someone already mentioned, Nova Launcher might be an option for anyone put off by a hideous shipping ui, especially when run on a model with a generous portion of memory. Of course maintaing the drumbeat over bad design may someday drive handset makers to see the error of their ways and change, so it's worth pointing out at every opportunity (same point for hardware: give us back the damned audio jack, lemmings!).

    2. Ledswinger Silver badge

      Re: Huawei alternative?

      Offers on various Huawei devices on Amazon caught my eye, around the £300 mark.

      I've just picked up a Pocophone F1 new, from Fleabay for £260, via a UK based grey importer, though I can't see any more at that price at this moment Its the global 128 Gb version. Absolutely fabulous to hold (well, insofar as any mobile phone can be). Decent battery, micros SD card slot (or second SIM).

      Main things to be aware you don't get on the F1 are wireless charging, waterproofing, and NFC capability, and it comes with a variant of Xiaomi's MIUI skin. I've used MIUI for a year or so on a previous phone, and have no complaints - particularly since it plays nicely with Nova Launcher. Teardown videos suggest it is also practical to dismantle should you wish to replace the battery in a couple of years.

  12. JohnFen Silver badge

    Yes, it's a net loss

    "You may regard this as a net loss."

    I do. I would never use the fingerprint sensor, but I use a headphone jack every day.

  13. dajames Silver badge

    Quite nice ...

    ... but rather a lot of money for a phone that's too big, isn't weatherproof, and has no removable memory, no removable battery, and no analogue headphone option.

    Even so, the promise of regular updates is tempting.

    1. julian_n

      Re: Quite nice ...

      Ask OnePlus 2 owners how updates worked out for them.

  14. boidsonly

    I jumped on the 6T

    I must to say I am happy with the $250 price tag after T-Mobile gave me $300 for my old Nexus 6.

    I do miss the headphone jack but it is a compromise I am willing to live with. So far so good. Good camera/battery life and near pure android experience.

  15. idoxde

    Xiaomi

    I just ordered Xiaomi A2 Lite for 180£ since I can't justify spending over 500£ on a phone. Specially that whatever the differences are, those differences are not worth hundreds of £/€ - in my opinion. But hey, I am cheap. I have learned it the hard way though, after my Nexus 5X bricked (and so my wife's), iPhone 5S slowed down to the point it was a real pain to use it. I thought at the time that I'm buying a premium quality devices from trusted vendors, but I feel cheated and never going that route again. Cheap I am and so be it.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Xiaomi

      I just ordered Xiaomi A2 Lite for 180£

      Why? I just got the same device for £118, thanks to a UK Ebay grey importer. Personally I'm reluctant to buy from offshore suppliers, mainly because of the risk of being hit with import duties and admin charges, but there's lots of well-rated UK based importers. Pay with a credit card via Ebay and you've got various lines of recourse if things go sour:

      1) The supplier

      2) The Ebay guarantee

      3) The Paypla guarantee

      4) Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act, backed by your credit card provider.

      1. idoxde

        Re: Xiaomi

        Why?

        I'm a weirdo. I don't use paypal or ebay. I don't know why, I just don't. I overpaid by the looks of things, but as long as its below 200 I am happy.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Nice. I don't get why people pay £600+ for phones. I had a Oneplus 3 which was excellent. In July I opted for a Mate 10 pro which is also excellent - but it cost only £370 brand new, unlocked from CPW. A monthly SIM costs £7.50.

    I really don't get why people pay astronomical upfront or monthly fees. I'd not regard either of the aforementioned devices to be substandard.

    (I also don't get not putting £xxx devices into cases. iPhone users tend to be the main culprit/victim/idiots here - I see way too many with spiderweb cracks.)

    Choose wisely!

  17. Snowy
    Facepalm

    No headphone socket, wonder why...

    With no headphone socket your going to have to use Bluetooth, which means turning on Location services.

  18. 89724102172714182892114I7551670349743096734346773478647892349863592355648544996312855148587659264921
    Thumb Up

    I like the Dutch Angle

  19. doublelayer Silver badge

    I don't know phones anymore

    I no longer really know the differences or specs of all the different phone models that come out. Other than that most are far too expensive and include some random skin over android. Does anyone know a phone that meets the following extremely long list of requirements:

    1. Costs less than $200 or so.

    2. Runs a modern version of stock android or has an unlocked bootloader so I can put one on.

    That's all I care about, really. I don't care about the camera (with the frequency I use it, it would be fine if it just didn't have one). I don't need a replaceable battery. A headphone socket or SD card support would be minor pluses, but not needed. I don't need any special extra hardware built in. Just a modern enough phone that does not cost as much as a fully specced-out desktop.

    1. TWB

      Re: I don't know phones anymore

      Fairly happy Moto(rola) owner here - fairly cheap and also would consider Wiley Fox. Not too overloaded with bloatware (IMHO - please comment if you think otherwise) Don't know about the unlocked bootloader as I'm not that adventurous.

    2. idoxde

      Re: I don't know phones anymore

      "Does anyone know a phone that meets the following extremely long list of requirements:"

      Mi A2 Lite I just bought from Amazon.co.uk (thank you for bloody 3 week delivery!)

      - 159-189£ depending on where you buy it

      - 4000mAh battery (the wife has it and with her, rather heavy use, lasts for 2 days on a single charge)

      - Stock Android One

      - dual SIM and SD card slot

      - headphone jack

  20. MrMerrymaker

    No notification light either!

    That was the dealbreaker for me. I don't have sound on and I don't have vibration on when I work

    1. Is It Me

      Re: No notification light either!

      Maybe time for a smart watch, depends on your use case

  21. hairydog

    "What if Huawei used OnePlus's Oxygen UI, I found myself musing recently. Wouldn't it be the perfect package?"

    Why not get a Huawei and install a different launcher? This is so obvious that I must have missed something.

    The launcher on my (elderly) Huawei had a new launcher within five minutes of starting it up.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    You dont get

    S75 protection if you pay by Paypal , even if you use a credit card to do so.

    I'm bit like doubleyaer

    small to medium size v good battery and stock Android , all at less than £300GBP might go for moto ??

    or Huawei or oneplus 5

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    and much cheaper than a flagship

    #fail

    Certainly not £400 cheaper than flagships. You can pick up a Pixel2 that easily beats an iPhoneXS for £450

    By flagship, I can only assume you mean idiot Samsung and Apple shoppers.

    1. Is It Me

      Re: and much cheaper than a flagship

      The Pixel 3 is the flagship from google now, not the Pixel 2, which is still "only" £699 for the cheapest but goes up to £929 for the most expensive (which I guess would be the flagship).

  24. julian_n

    You missed a few things from your review

    A company that drops support for its phones after a short time - ask OnePlus 2 users about that

    A company that lied and bluffed its way through a hack resulting in people losing a lot of money.

    If anyone trusts such a company - good luck - I won't be going near them.

  25. Charles 9 Silver badge

    Honest question here. What's the best you can get these days with headphone jack, SD slot, and a user-replaceable battery?

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