Almost 12 months have now passed since OnePlus presented the 6 series and put it on sale. Since then, the OnePlus 6 has accompanied me through highs and lows in my daily smartphone life. Time to draw a conclusion.
If you follow the publishing rhythm in the smartphone industry, you would have to buy a new smartphone every 12 months at the latest. But a smartphone in the first weeks, if not in the first months, is hardly the same as after 12 months. The hardware does not change over time, but the software does. After more than a year with the OnePlus 6, I have to admit that this component is and will remain the addictive factor in this smartphone.
OnePlus 6: the ugly duckling among smartphones
If it's about the exterior, then I wouldn't really go for a OnePlus smartphone. After only 12 months, the design of the smartphone has already become obsolete. While Huawei, Samsung and Co are already courting buyers with color gradients on the shelves, the OnePlus 6 seems somehow boring and the design outdated after one year.
Also from the front the wide notch looks very old-fashioned. But let's be honest: after buying a smartphone, who is going to keep looking at the back of it and hope to still be emotionally on cloud nine after 12 months. Isn't it rather the case that over time you don't think about the design of your smartphone anymore? At least that's what happened to me, because in everyday life completely different values count with the OnePlus 6.
With a trick the camera will actually be good
Ok, when it comes to cameras, whether for photography or videos, OnePlus has never really been a threat to Apple, Samsung and Huawei. But it is not as bad as it is sometimes propagated in public. At least not if you use the Google Camera App port instead of the Stock Camera app. Thanks to developers who port the camera app only meant to be compatible with Google's own Pixel smartphones to OnePlus smartphones, the OnePlus 6 can actually take very nice photos.
Even in very poor lighting conditions. Sure, the camera hardware built into the OnePlus 6 prevents you from getting close to the quality of the Pixel 3 XL, but it's amazing what the Gcam port for the OnePlus 6 can do with the photos.
The disadvantage of using an unofficial port is that you have to take care of the updating of the app yourself and you have to live with bugs and crashes from time to time.
OnePlus Fast Charge dispels the battery worries
The battery life of the OnePlus 6 is satisfactory. Almost 5 hours of display on time were the rule in my long-term test. But at least once a day the OnePlus 6 had to be connected to the quick charger when I was using it. If you want to have an endurance runner who, despite intensive use, only needs to be connected to a power supply shortly before going to bed, you should rather stay away from the OnePlus 6. Personally, it didn't bother me much. As with almost all everyday objects, one incorporates into the daily routine.
With the OnePlus 6, the purchase of a second power supply and one for the car was mandatory after just a few weeks. At work and when traveling, the OnePlus quick-charging power supply is used to ensure that the battery is charged at least 80 percent in the shortest possible time in emergencies. For charging at home and overnight, I usually use a power supply unit that charges the OnePlus 6 slowly and gently. But placing strategic charging stations has always been part of my everyday life.
The software is the star
OnePlus has always placed great emphasis on the software and a fluid everyday experience. Anyone who has ever used a OnePlus smartphone for a long time will understand me when I say that OxygenOS is one of the most fluid software experiences on a smartphone. Apps start fast, content builds up fast and scrolling through the app drawer is a pleasure.
Android purists love OxygenOS because it comes very close to Google's Stock Android. What OnePlus also integrates in terms of adjustments promotes the individuality of the user. From accent colors, status bar configuration to gesture control, you can customize the software to your own taste.
But with all the praise there is also a lot to "criticize". Why do you need an independent gallery app in this day and age? Google Photos is pre-installed, it would be sufficient to use these. Google Assistant can now be started silently by pressing the power button for 0.5 seconds after a software update, but it requires long training to internalize the pressing time. I personally think that Shelf is superfluous too, but an option to open Google Discover with a right-click is not anchored in the settings. Mind you, these are really just little things and you can get along with them over time.
Is the purchase of a OnePlus 6 still worthwhile?
Even after one year, the OnePlus 6 is still doing a good job and is convincing, especially thanks to the software. In terms of performance and usability in everyday life, the OnePlus 6 is still one of the top smartphones. You have to accept compromises in terms of camera quality and battery life. So long as you are aware of this, the OnePlus 6 still deserves a recommendation in 2019. Unfortunately OnePlus has already stopped the production of the OnePlus 6, so it is difficult to buy one brand new.