OnePlus Nord : Pretty much everything you could ask for

OnePlus Nord Pre Book Only in OnePlus Authorised Reseller Idris Electronics Raipur

The OnePlus brand, which originally coined the phrase ‘flagship killer’, has been moving slowly into the premium smartphone space in recent years. Now the company seems to going back to its roots, by offering more affordable smartphones in price segments which it had abandoned. The newly-launched OnePlus Nord (first impressions) is not a flagship phone nor is it a flagship killer, but it is a stab by the company to re-establish a foothold in the mid-range.

Undoubtedly, the OnePlus Nord pushes above its weight class. Using the device doesn’t give me the feeling that I’m on a phone that is anything less than a flagship in terms of user experience and day-to-day usage. However, other options in the same price segment could present more enticing options for gamers. Even so, for those craving the smooth and reliable OnePlus experience at an affordable price, the OnePlus Nord will not disappoint.

The Nord design includes a quad-camera layout at the back, and a dual-punch hole camera cutout on the top right at front. While OnePlus has marketed the Nord as a mid-range offering, it has not skimmed on premium materials for an aesthetically pleasing device. The front and back of the device are covered with Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protection like the flagship OnePlus 8 series. A narrow design, trimmed edges, polished aluminium frame and a curved back panel gives an easy grip to the device. OnePlus also offers a clear plastic case with a textured finish that will give additional protection to the device.

The OnePlus Nord is available in Onyx Black and Blue Marble colour variants, and I have received the latter variant for review. While I haven’t seen the black variant, I’m more attracted towards this teal-like colour option that is a breath of fresh air in the saturated dual-tone gradient-based market. The quad-camera layout is present on the top left, like several of Realme’s phones and the camera housing slightly juts out, making the phone wobble on flat surfaces. There is a single bottom-firing speaker on the device as opposed to the stereo speakers on the OnePlus 8 series. Alongside the speaker is a USB Type-C port and the dual-SIM tray. OnePlus’ signature alert slider with its textured finish is present on the right side of the device along with the power button. The tactile and clicky volume rocker buttons are on the left. I will have to say that OnePlus has done a very remarkable job of giving a premium appeal to the Nord.

Another area that doesn’t involve compromise is the display which is arguable one of the best in the segment. The device has a 6.44-inch FHD+ (2,400 x 1,080) AMOLED panel with a 20:9 aspect ratio and 408ppi. Unlike the OnePlus 8 series, the screen is flat and does not curve on the sides, which prevents any accidental touches. The Nord does, however, retain the fluid 90Hz refresh rate experience. As I have come to expect from OnePlus, the Nord’s screen has excellent colour reproduction and contrast ratios. Viewing angles and the deep blacks on the screen are great due to the AMOLED nature of the display.

Display customisation options on the device are quite extensive. You have several options to adjust the colour tone along with the amount of saturation. There are modes which make the display more suited for reading an ebook or browsing through your phone at night. The display gets sufficiently bright during daytime but does not go as dim as I want when I’m about to sleep. The refresh rate on the phone is of course variable and there is an intelligent auto-switch feature which adjusts the refresh rate wherever 90Hz is not needed.

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