OnePlus 8 unmasked, and not everyone will like its biggest change

OnePlus 8 unmasked, and not everyone will like its biggest change

It looks like OnePlus is going all-in on curved displays.

At least, that’s according to new leaked images from reliable tipster @OnLeaks, who has published a series of high-resolution renders in collaboration with CashKaro that purport to show the final design of the 2020 flagship smartphone from OnePlus.

As it stands, OnePlus only uses a dual-curved display design on its pricier OnePlus 7 Pro, with the OnePlus 7 and OnePlus 7T sticking with flat touchscreens instead.

While there undoubtedly an appeal to displays that bleed over the sides of the handset – not least because it allows manufacturers to squeeze more screen real estate into a smartphone without the overall footprint of the handset spiralling to pocket-straining sizes. On a more superficial level, it also looks really, really cool.

But there are also some strong counterarguments against the technology.

First of all, curved displays can cause some weird light bleeds around the curvaceous sides of the handset, which stand-out strongly on webpages like this, and other apps with strong block colour backgrounds. It can also distort video when viewed in full screen, and if the palm rejection software isn’t up to scratch then you can find the keyboard randomly adding in punc,tuatio%n and symbo°ls into your sentences. Not ideal.

Curved displays can be quite contentious, which is why it’s interesting that OnePlus will no longer offer users a choice between its curved and flat displays.

With the OnePlus 7T, OnePlus has brought a number of the best features previously reserved for the costly OnePlus 7 Pro to a more affordable, more compact handset – with a flat screen and no dreadful pop-up selfie camera. As such, we were thrilled with the smartphone and praised everything about it during its initial announcement in India last month.

OnePlus will confirm the UK release date and pricing at its hotly-anticipated event in London this week (and there are whispers of a follow-up to the OnePlus 7 Pro too).

Elsewhere, OnePlus 8 looks set to boast the same vertically-aligned camera set-up we’ve seen on the OnePlus 7 Pro. Interesting, OnePlus ditched this look for a new circular set-up on the back of its OnePlus 7T. But it doesn’t look like that design will last into the new year.

OnePlus 8 will ship with a curved 6.5-inch OLED display. Presumably, OnePlus will stick with – or improve on – the 90Hz high refresh rate technology it has used in its last few handsets. The higher refresh rate makes scrolling, system animations, and fast-paced gaming much smoother.

With the OnePlus 8, it looks like the Shenzhen-based company will ditch its pop-up selfie camera. Instead, OnePlus will take a leaf from the Galaxy S10 series and embed its front-facing camera into a small cut-out in the top left-hand of the display. While it’s not the most elegant solution, it should at least make its Face Unlock feature a little more practical than the whirring pop-up that has to emerge to verify your likeness on the OnePlus 7 Pro at the moment.

It’s unclear whether the OnePlus 8 shown in these renders will be accompanied by a costlier OnePlus 8 Pro with exclusive features and cutting-edge technology, or whether OnePlus will use this release to combine its two smartphone lines into one.

As you’d expect from OnePlus, we’re expecting this handset to pack the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset, a generous allocation of RAM (we’d bet on at least 8GB), as well as the superfast UFS 3.0 storage as standard. Details are still pretty scant as we’re months away from the 2020 launch and, honestly, OnePlus probably doesn’t have everything locked down quite yet anyway.

Despite the almost infallible track record we’ve seen from @OnLeaks, who uses CAD models used during manufacturing to create these high-resolution renders – rather than blurry images of prototypes like you’ll see from other leaksters, it’s still worth taking this with a pinch of salt.

Stay tuned for the latest on OnePlus during its event in London on Thursday… as well as the OnePlus 8 when it launched sometime next year.

Written by David Minister

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