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OnePlus 5 & 5T updated for HD streaming playback, but you have to mail in your phone to get it

Late last year, it was discovered that the OnePlus 5 and 5T can't stream HD videos from Netflix, Amazon and other streaming services. The problem is the phones don't ship with the WidevIne Level 1 DRM that these services require for HD playback, so videos are only played at standard definition (480p). There's a fix available, but users will have to jump through hoops to get it.

A OnePlus staff member states (opens in new tab) the DRM software has to be installed from a trusted computer at the factory, so users will need to mail their devices back to OnePlus. The company is covering shipping costs, but users will still need a spare smartphone to use for a few days. It's unfortunate that this fix can't be delivered over the air, but this isn't the first time a DRM system has inconvenienced consumers. There also hasn't been any word if new OnePlus 5T's will have the DRM system preloaded.

Are you going to send in your OnePlus device? Let us know down below!

46 Comments
  • Wow... Never settle huh ?
  • This ^
  • WTF?
  • Lol that's sounds quite funny to be honest. What if your phone gets lost in the mail ahah
  • Yeah it does sound very weird. I'm sure there will be some people who will do it. I probably would if I owned one since I have another phone to fall back to.
  • I just don't think that this update is worth it though. It's a nice addition, but not a huge one.
  • Oh, it would be for me. I watch streaming video on my phone daily during the week.
  • Thing is though, you likely wouldn't notice. This same thing was true of the 3 and 3T too... No one noticed. No one noticed on the 5 til 6 months after release, and then it wasn't someone who couldn't bare just how terrible the stream looked, it was someone routing through code.
  • Lol, what are you on? Do you know how many people watch Netflix? That's a lot of people that have to deal with 480p despite having a 1080p screen.
  • I love my 5, but Jesus, that's pathetic lmao. Can't they push a software update? Why do they need to manually install it there?
  • Yeah, that's the part that gets me. It is a software update, but they have plug your phone physically into one of their company computers to do it? Do they lack the know how?
  • I'm guessing it's not an issue of technical capability, but licensing. The entities that control these DRM systems have a vested interest in preventing this stuff from being grabbed off of an OTA package and passed around on XDA.
  • That makes sense, but still rubs me the wrong way. So I have to thoroughly wipe my phone, send it to them, and pray?
  • Just pretend you sent it in... It's not like it's a serious defect that'll make the phony unsafe. It's basically imperceptible.
  • That's true too lol... Never noticed. I have a giant TV for 4K UHD. You made sense sir.
  • This is why DRM is just plain evil.
  • And they wonder why people just download the stuff from torrent sites. If it's easier to pay most people will, if they make you jump through hoops people will find another easy way.
    Now I'm going to go download a car.
  • Hilarious
  • Umm.. So people discussed this, had multiple meetings, memos, conference calls, and all determined this was best course of action?
  • They have no choice. The owners of DRMs licencing have decided that's the only way to do it.
  • They absolutely had a choice. If they didn't have a choice than no phone would have had streaming out of the box. DRM has issues, but a phone in 2017 should LAUNCH with HD video streaming. Don't absolve your favorite company of responsibility just because you like them.
  • Damn, what a joke. 😂
  • I don't care if I have to send my 5T in to have this done. I kept my 3T so I have a back up phone.
  • What a piss take... Luckily I couldn't care less about this, and someone will probably come up with a way to spoof it and install yourself before long. DRM sucks... Only hurts paying customers, and in my opinion the businesses that employ it. Reminds me of having to download cracks from the pirate bay to get a game to run.
  • Audio will go a similar way should there be a full-scale transition to USB-C audio. This is why getting rid of the 3.5mm jack is a bad idea.
  • Reminds me of the root kits/DRM schemes Sony had on their CD so many years ago where purchased discs could not be played on your PC. I ended up going to Napster to get copies of music that I had already purchased to be able to play them on my portable devices. It was so much easier to use Napster than go through the hoops to get my U2 CD to play on my mini-disc player. My CD purchases dropped dramatically at that point. "Some MF's always trying to ice skate uphill"
  • I am even happier that I went with the Moto Z2 for $375 over the one plus 5. Lol, I haven't had any of these stupid problems. 1st you can't dial 911 and now this.
  • Haha why bother. I watch stuff on my phone a fair bit but if I want to watch something in HD I'll chromecast it.
  • So if you Chromecast it, does to go to 1080?
  • Yeah, or 4K or whatever. The chromecast is a distinct device with its own stream and decoder.
  • I would have gotten a refund upon discovering this, if I had bought that phone
  • Same for my galaxy tab S2. Great screen, can't do Netflix hd.
  • Got a 5T and must admit I'm very disappointed by this.
    Had I noticed? No..
    Why am I bothered? Don't know..
  • Internet outrage summed up beautifully.
  • Sorry your eyes are terrible. You're bothered because your 2017 flagship phone doesn't have a basic feature that smartphones have had for years. But you know, never settle.
  • Lol, Yep my eyesight isn't great.
    But is 4k really needed on a 6" screen?
    FFS I'm only just getting used to colour tv's
  • I'll take WGAF for $1000, Alex.
  • Wait a minute..was HD streaming promised at some point for the 5/5T? Why couldn't they wait for the 6 to include this? Perhaps there is something else going on they don't want to customers to know about right away? "While we were performing the DRM update, we swapped out x component at no additional charge to you." Whatever the reason, all I know is that devices should be expeditiously returned to the customer with a brand new case and extra charger/earbuds at the least.
  • Ahahahahahaha. People will eventually stop giving this sham of a company their money.
  • Let me guess, you have to leave the phone unlocked and can't do a factory reset either right? Such a BS scam company.
  • I don't stream HD on my big 5", just don't get it... If you own something 55" and above, go big not cheap. Like a $49 Rodu.
  • Does this mean when you're streaming to a device like Chromecast or simply watching on the phone itself?
  • I really like the OnePlus 5T but for mostly the same reasons as why I'm going for the Pixel 2 XL is that I'm a Google and stock Android lover (even though Oxygen OS is very close to stock and I like OnePlus software) but the faster updates, and consistent security patches direct from Google are major reason why I'll be paying extra for the Pixel 2 XL plus add the amazing camera in the mix and 4 years of updates and security patches makes the Pixel 2 XL the obviously better choice. Plus the this stupid decision by OnePlus to send your OnePlus 5T to get the update so you can watch Netflix in HD is dumb, why not just push the update as normal?
  • That’s a joke right 😁 This company is just getting better and better 😁😁
  • What a joke. Could you ever imagine apple or google pulling a stunt like this. You get what you pay for. 480 on a 1080p screen. Ridiculous. Post your phone back.... lol. I’ve heard it all now. Couldn’t make this up.
  • I'm not gonna do it, doesn't bother me that I don't have HD. Hell, I don't even have a Netflix account, so it doesn't bother me, and Amazon video streaming looks fine to me on this device