OnePlus 12 Review: The Flagship Phone Without AI

OnePlus takes a different approach with its latest flagship, the OnePlus 12. In a market with more AI-centric features, OnePlus goes back to the basics, focusing on elements that matter to users.

OnePlus 12 Review: The Flagship Phone Without AI

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Design

The OnePlus 12 retains the camera module and aluminum frame from its previous phone, the OnePlus 11. While the design is sleek and comfortable to hold, it lacks innovation, and the industry trend towards flat panels may make it feel somewhat outdated.

The display is a standout feature, has a 6.8-inch LTPO AMOLED with a refresh rate from 1-120Hz. With a peak brightness of 4500nits and a 1440p resolution, the display offers a visually appealing experience.

The inclusion of Aqua Touch, designed to enhance touchscreen functionality when wet, is a practical touch to the device.

Performance

Equipped with the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 processor, the OnePlus 12 delivers top-tier processing power. The base model offers 12GB of RAM and 256GB of storage, while the higher-tier variant provides 16GB of RAM and 512GB of storage.

The device has excellent battery life, thanks to a 5,400mAh battery and optimizations by OnePlus and Qualcomm.

The addition of 80W wired charging and 50W wireless charging. The Dual Cryo-velocity Cooling System ensures efficient heat management during intensive tasks.

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Camera

The camera system has a 50MP wide-angle lens, a 48MP ultrawide lens, and a 64MP telephoto lens with 3x optical zoom.

The Periscope zoom technology delivers excellent results, outperforming some competitors in low-light conditions.

The main camera captures detailed shots, while the ultra-wide sensor, though solid, exhibits limitations in range. The 32MP front-facing camera produces satisfactory results for selfies and videos.

While lacking some AI features present in rival devices, the camera system remains competitive and capable.

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Performance

Running on OxygenOS 14 based on Android 14, the OnePlus 12 offers a fast, efficient, and customizable user experience.

OxygenOS continues to be a strong point for OnePlus, providing smooth animations and useful features. However, the device appears to lag behind in AI capabilities compared to competitors like the Samsung Galaxy S24 series and Google Pixel 8.

The OnePlus 12 excels in overall performance, delivering great user experience, haptics, and stereo speakers.

Pricing

The OnePlus 12 is priced at $799 for the base model and $899 for the higher configuration. While the device offers value for its specifications, it may face challenges in the U.S. market where carrier subsidies heavily influence consumer choices.

Various pre-order deals from retailers like Amazon, Best Buy, and OnePlus directly sweeten the deal, providing incentives such as free storage upgrades and trial subscriptions.

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