It’s not easy to choose your next smartphone when there are so many attractive options on the market. All the bargain hunters out there will be excited to get their hands on the OnePlus 5. It’s packed with powerful hardware intended to challenge the flagships, but undercut on price. The big question is whether compromises are required to achieve that low price. Does Samsung’s impossibly stylish Galaxy S8 do enough to justify the extra expense? Let’s take a closer look at these contenders, as we pit the OnePlus 5 vs. the Galaxy S8 to find out which is right for you.
Samsung Galaxy S8
|Size||154.2 × 74.1 × 7.25 mm (6.07 × 2.92 × 0.28 in)||148.9 × 68.1 × 8.0 mm (5.86 × 2.68 × 0.31 in)|
|Weight||5.39 ounces (153 grams)||5.46 ounces (155 grams)|
|Screen||5.5-inch AMOLED||5.8-inch Quad HD Super AMOLED|
|Resolution||1,920 × 1,080 pixels||2,960 × 1,440 pixels|
|OS||Android 7.1.1 Nougat||Android 7.0 Nougat|
|Storage||64GB or 128GB||64 (U.S.) 128GB (International)|
|SD Card Slot||No||Yes|
|Processor||Qualcomm Snapdragon 835||Qualcomm Snapdragon 835|
|RAM||6GB or 8GB||4GB|
|Connectivity||GSM / HSPA / LTE||GSM / CDMA / HSPA / LTE|
|Camera||Front 8MP, Rear Dual 16MP and 20MP||Front 8MP, Rear 12MP with OIS|
|Bluetooth||Yes, version 5||Yes, version 5|
|Other sensors||Gyroscope, accelerometer, compass, proximity sensor||Barometer, gyroscope, accelerometer, compass, heart rate, proximity sensor, iris scanner|
|Water Resistant||No||Yes, IP68|
|Charger||USB Type-C||USB Type-C|
|Wireless Charging||No||Yes, Qi and PMA|
|Marketplace||Google Play Store||Google Play Store|
|Color offerings||Black, gray||Black, silver, gray, blue, gold|
|Availability||OnePlus,||AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile|
|DT Review||4 out of 5 stars||4 out of 5 stars|
Both the OnePlus 5 and the
Winner: OnePlus 5
Design, display, and durability
It’s not easy to distinguish the OnePlus 5 from Apple’s iPhone 7 Plus when you look from the back. Those antenna lines, the dual camera placement, and the prominent camera hump are all familiar – though, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. The OnePlus 5 is certainly not an ugly phone. Whether you like it or not will come down to personal preference, but there can only be one winner in this category and it’s not the OnePlus 5.
Samsung’s curved Infinity Display, along with the unusual 18.5:9 aspect ratio, maximizes your screen real estate, but packs it into a smaller body that’s easy to manage one-handed. The design is innovative, it looks gorgeous, and it feels great in the hand. By comparison, the OnePlus 5 looks a bit dated.
The screen is another big win for Samsung. At 5.8 inches, with a resolution of 2,960 x 1,440 pixels, it is bigger and much sharper than the 5.5-inch, 1,080p display in the OnePlus 5.
If that wasn’t enough, the
Battery life and charging
On paper, there isn’t a great deal between the
Thankfully, both support speedy charging via USB Type-C ports. You can fully charge the S8 in around 90 minutes with adaptive fast charging. OnePlus’s Dash Charge system allows you to recover 60 percent of the battery in half an hour, but still takes around 90 minutes to fully charge.
The S8 supports wireless charging in the Qi or PMA format, which is a handy extra that you won’t find in the OnePlus 5, and enough to scrape the win in this category.
Samsung stuck with a 12-megapixel camera in the S8, with an f/1.7 aperture that’s great for low-light photography. The OnePlus 5 kicks thing up a notch or two with a dual main camera that combines a 16-megapixel lens with a 20-megapixel telephoto lens, both by Sony. This helps to create the same depth effect that won the iPhone 7 Plus camera so many plaudits. The OnePlus 5 camera also has an f/1.7 aperture. Around the front, both phones have perfectly capable 8-megapixel shooters. We’ll need time for a proper comparison, so we’re making this a tie.
The S8 and the OnePlus 5 are running Android Nougat, but the newer OnePlus 5 will ship with the slightly fresher 7.1.1 flavor. We expect the S8 will be updated soon. Over the top, we have Samsung’s TouchWiz, compared to OxygenOS on the OnePlus 5.
Samsung’s restyled user interface is slick, attractive, and packed with a wealth of choice. Extras include iris scanning, a deep wealth of customization options, and the artificially intelligent assistant, Bixby, though we’re not entirely convinced of its usefulness over Google Assistant (you can still use Google Assistant). You’ll find some handy features in the Oxygen interface, too, but it has a more minimalist feel that’s closer to Google’s stock version of Android. Which one is better really comes down to personal preference, though OnePlus offers more system-level customization.
OnePlus is also more reliable with version updates — the OnePlus 3T and OnePlus 3 were among the first smartphones to receive Android 7.0 Nougat last fall. For this, it takes the win.
Winner: OnePlus 5
Price and availability
You can buy the Samsung
The OnePlus 5 is much cheaper, with a starting price of $480 for the gray version, which has 64GB of storage and 6GB of RAM. It will work just fine on AT&T, T-Mobile and other GSM networks in the U.S., but not on Verizon or Sprint. If you want the black version with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, then you’ll need to pay $540. You’ll have to buy directly from OnePlus and pay the full amount upfront.
|OnePlus 5||Samsung Galaxy S8|
|AT&T||$480||$750 or $25 per month for 30 months|
|Sprint||N/A||$750 or $31.25 per month for 24 months|
|T-Mobile||$480||$750 or $30 per month for 24 months with a $30 down payment|
|Verizon||N/A||$720 or $30 per month for 24 months|
The OnePlus 5 takes the win here because it is significantly cheaper than the
Winner: OnePlus 5
Overall winner: OnePlus 5
The OnePlus 5 held its own and narrowly excelled. It brings the raw power of the
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