Perhaps the biggest recent design trend that we’ve seen at all price levels is the erasure of notches, with various companies experimenting with pop-up modules and holes in the screen. OnePlus has stuck with a waterdrop notch for the OnePlus 7T, which is a surprise considering its competition. It looks as though the company is saving this feature for its Pro models.
We have the same elongated earpiece grille, and the same general aesthetic as before. We really like the fact that the screen’s corners are much less rounded than we typically see on phones these days, resulting in less of the display getting clipped. The borders around the screen are pretty thin, and there’s little else to see on the front.
The combination of metal and frosted glass sets this phone apart from all the mid-range devices with gradients that we’ve seen over the past year or so. The awkward camera bump aside, the OnePlus 7T looks and feels very premium. The rear does get slightly smudged with fingerprints, but the texture is not slippery at all, making it a little less difficult to shuffle this phone in one hand when trying to reach the upper one-third of the screen.
At 190g and 8.13mm thick, this is a fairly bulky phone, but it isn’t too hard to live with. The power button and alert slider on the right are within reach, and so are the volume buttons on the left. OnePlus controversially did away with the 3.5mm headphones socket already, so there isn’t one here. The dual SIM tray and USB Type-C port are on the bottom.
As expected, the OnePlus 7T uses Qualcomm’s refreshed Snapdragon 855+ processor, which has a slightly faster 2.96GHz high-performance Kryo 485 CPU core than the Snapdragon 855, while the other seven efficiency cores remain the same. Qualcomm also claims 15 percent better GPU performance thanks to a higher clocked Adreno 640 integrated GPU.
Battery capacity has gone up slightly from 3700mAh to 3800mAh. OnePlus also says that its new Warp Charge 30T standard is quicker than Warp Charge 30. The charger you get in the box is rated for 5V/6A (30W) and is touted to charge the phone from zero to 70 percent in just 30 minutes, a claim we will test in a bit.
There’s dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11ac; Bluetooth 5 with aptX HD and LDAC; GPS; NFC; and all the usual sensors. OnePlus also says its haptic vibration motor and in-display fingerprint sensors have been improved compared to previous models. There are a few missing high-end features: Wi-Fi 6, wireless charging, and an IP rating would have been nice, but you can’t get them all at this price yet.
The OnePlus 7T feels very snappy and responsive, no doubt due to the combination of the Snapdragon 855+ processor and the 90Hz screen. It isn’t possible to say how much of a difference each of these factors is responsible for, but the overall effect is that this phone is a pleasure to use and it didn’t stumble or keep us waiting at any point during our review.