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OnePlus 7 vs. OnePlus 7 Pro: Which should you buy?

OnePlus 7

OnePlus 7

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The OnePlus 7 is one of the best value-for-money phones you'll find in 2019. OnePlus is launching the device for less than what the OnePlus 6 retailed for in India, and that alone should tell you how good a deal it is. The fact that it comes with a Snapdragon 855, UFS 3.0 storage, and the same 48MP camera as the OnePlus 7 Pro is the icing on the cake.

OnePlus 7

Insane value

Outstanding value
Snapdragon 855
UFS 3.0 storage
48MP camera
Same design as last year
20W wired charging
Sub-par vibration motor

OnePlus 7 Pro

OnePlus 7 Pro

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The OnePlus 7 Pro is the most ambitious phone the company has released to date, featuring a stunning new design that's devoid of any bezels. The 90Hz QHD+ display is absolutely stunning, and it will change how you use your phone. The hardware is on the bleeding edge, and overall the OnePlus 7 Pro is one of the best devices you'll find for under $800.

OnePlus 7 Pro

Smooth as silk

Stunning bezel-less design
Buttery-smooth 90Hz display
UFS 3.0 storage
30W wired charging
Clean user interface
Average battery
Unwieldy
No water resistance
No wireless charging

For the last three years, OnePlus has dominated in the value flagship space by constantly undercutting its rivals. Things are different this year — the Chinese manufacturer is making its foray into the high-end space with the OnePlus 7 Pro, which has an incredible 90Hz display, a stunning notch-free design, and the latest hardware available today. But alongside that, the company has also released the OnePlus 7, which has the same design as last year's OnePlus 6T but with a lot of the underlying hardware from the OnePlus 7 Pro.

Two phones aimed at entirely different audiences

I'm not going to bury the lede here — the OnePlus 7 Pro has a higher-res display with a 90Hz refresh rate, three cameras at the back, and a 4000mAh battery with 30W fast charging. Those are the three main differences between the OnePlus 7 Pro and the OnePlus 7.

With a 90Hz display and top-notch internals, the OnePlus 7 Pro is the fastest phone I've ever used.

I'll elaborate on some of those points: the 90Hz display is obviously the marquee feature on the OnePlus 7 Pro, and it does make a huge difference in day-to-day usage. I've been using the device a lot, and the higher refresh rate combined with the sheer hardware on offer makes the OnePlus 7 Pro the fastest phone I've ever used.

Everything loads instantly, and the 90Hz screen eliminates any lag whatsoever. All interactions are buttery smooth, and it has been an absolute joy to use the phone.

Meanwhile, the OnePlus 7 has a more modest FHD+ panel with the standard 60Hz refresh rate that you'll find on most phones today, two rear cameras, and a 3700mAh battery with 20W fast charging. If that seems familiar to you, that's because the OnePlus 7 is nothing more than a refreshed version of the OnePlus 6T. So in essence, this is the OnePlus 6TT.

The OnePlus 7 is a mashup of the 6T and OnePlus 7 Pro, and the combination works pretty well.

In fact, it has the exact same panel as the 6T — a 6.4-inch Optic AMOLED display — as well as the same 3700mAh battery, same 16MP front camera, same vibration motor and in-screen fingerprint sensor, and the same identical design. There's a new red color option that looks particularly interesting, but other than that this is the OnePlus 6T that we're all familiar with.

But before you dismiss the OnePlus 7 entirely, there are a few things to note. It has the same Snapdragon 855 chipset as the OnePlus 7 Pro, as well as the same 48MP camera at the back. There's also stereo speakers, UFS 3.0 storage, and identical software.

So what you actually get with the OnePlus 7 is a device with the design of the 6T and internal hardware from the OnePlus 7 Pro. And that's a combination that works really well.

CategoryOnePlus 7 ProOnePlus 7
Operating systemAndroid 9.0 PieAndroid 9.0 Pie
Display6.67-inch Fluid AMOLED
3120x1440 (19.5:9)
90Hz, HDR10+
Gorilla Glass 6
6.41-inch Optic AMOLED, 2340x1080 (19.5:9)
Gorilla Glass 6
ChipsetSnapdragon 855
1 x 2.84GHz Kryo 485
3 x 2.41GHz Kryo 485
4 x 1.78GHz Kryo 485
Adreno 640
7nm
Snapdragon 855
1 x 2.84GHz Kryo 485
3 x 2.41GHz Kryo 485
4 x 1.78GHz Kryo 485
Adreno 640
7nm
RAM6GB/8GB/12GB6GB/8GB
Storage128GB/256GB128GB/256GB
MicroSD slotNoNo
Rear camera 148MP, f/1.6
1.4um, OIS
Dual Pixel PDAF
48MP, f/1.6
1.4um, OIS
Dual Pixel PDAF
Rear camera 28MP, f/2.4
OIS, telephoto
5MP, f/2.4
Rear camera 316MP, f/2.2
117-degree field-of-view
No
Front camera16MP, f/2.016MP, f/2.0
ConnectivityWi-Fi ac 2x2 MIMO, Bluetooth 5.0
AptX HD, LDAC, NFC, A-GPS
Wi-Fi ac 2x2 MIMO, Bluetooth 5.0
AptX HD, NFC, A-GPS
AudioUSB-C
Stereo speakers
USB-C
Stereo speakers
Battery4000mAh3700mAh
ChargingUSB-C 3.1
30W
USB-C
20W
Water resistanceNoNo
SecurityIn-display fingerprintIn-display fingerprint
Dimensions162.6 x 75.9 x 8.8mm
206g
157.7 x 74.8 x 8.2mm
182g
ColorsMirror Gray, Nebula Blue, AlmondMirror Gray, Red

The OnePlus 7 is the obvious choice

OnePlus has done it once again. With the OnePlus 7 series, it is giving customers more choice. There's the OnePlus 7 for those looking for value, and the OnePlus 7 Pro is aimed at those that want the absolute best that the brand has to offer. It's a smart move that will allow the brand to play on two fronts.

OnePlus has always been about delivering value — in 2019, that's the OnePlus 7.

Essentially, the OnePlus 7 is aimed at the likes of POCO, Honor and all the other value flagships brands that will roll out devices under $500. OnePlus' decision to release the phone in markets like the UK and India confirms as much, because that's where we'll see the Honor 20 Pro and whatever POCO decides to launch later this year.

The OnePlus 7 Pro goes up against true flagships from the likes of Google and Samsung. That 90Hz display is absolutely fantastic, as is the rest of the hardware. OxygenOS continues to be my favorite third-party skin, and while I believe that OnePlus still has a lot of work to do on the camera front, the OnePlus 7 Pro is a great alternative to the Galaxy S10+ and the Pixel 3 in the U.S. The fact that OnePlus isn't selling the standard OnePlus 7 in the U.S. should give you an indication of its strategy this year.

If you're in India, my pick would obviously be the OnePlus 7. The value on offer makes it a phenomenal purchase in 2019, and you're basically getting most of the same hardware as the OnePlus 7 Pro at a substantial discount.

Sure, the OnePlus 7 Pro has a silky smooth 90Hz display and a bezel-less design, but I don't think that alone is worth the extra ₹16,000 ($230). The OnePlus 7 Pro has more cameras at the back, but the telephoto and wide-angle lens aren't that great, and the OnePlus 7 has the same primary 48MP sensor. OnePlus has always been about delivering outstanding value, and the OnePlus 7 is that device in 2019.

For the rest of the world, the OnePlus 7 Pro may prove to be better value — it's £649 in the UK compared to the OnePlus 7 at £499, for instance.

Harish Jonnalagadda is a Senior Editor overseeing Asia at Android Central. He leads the site's coverage of Chinese phone brands, contributing to reviews, features, and buying guides. He also writes about storage servers, audio products, and the semiconductor industry. Contact him on Twitter at @chunkynerd.