It was a delightful device to use, particularly due to its impressive battery life and excellent performance.
Reviewing the OnePlus 11, a flagship phone from 2023 that boasts upgraded camera technology, impressive gaming performance, and excellent battery life. If you’re looking for a versatile smartphone that can compete with the Pixel 7 Pro and costs less than Samsung’s S23 Ultra, the OnePlus 11 is certainly worth your consideration.
OnePlus 11 Design
OnePlus 11 5G – 16GB RAM+256GB
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Firstly, I must say that the OnePlus 11 has one of my favorite designs among OnePlus smartphones in quite some time. It features the usual glass front and back, accompanied by a stainless steel frame that seamlessly transitions into the camera bump. However, there is a small visible seam, which is a bit disappointing.
The Frosted rear of the device offers a grippy texture and effectively conceals smudges and fingerprints, which is great news, especially for those with oily hands. The back end is constructed with Gorilla Glass 5, which remains in perfect condition even after a couple of weeks of use.
As for the front end, it is protected by Gorilla Glass Victus. Although I have noticed that this type of glass tends to scratch easily on other smartphones, I have kept OnePlus’s pre-installed screen protector in place. However, the screen protector has started to develop bubbles near the top, so I’ll likely remove it soon.
It’s important to note that the OnePlus 11 carries an official IP rating of IP64, which means it is splash-resistant and provides excellent protection against dust and particles. To test its durability, I have exposed the device to steam in the shower and subjected it to splashing, and it has performed perfectly fine without any issues.
OxygenOS 13 & features
On the software side, the OnePlus 11 runs OxygenOS 13 based on Android 13, offering four years of OS updates and five years of security updates, ensuring its future-proofness. I have already created a comprehensive video discussing all the noteworthy features of OxygenOS 13, so I encourage you to check that out for all the details. In this paragraph, I won’t repeat myself. However, I will mention that OxygenOS 13 has been incredibly smooth and reliable. I have encountered minimal glitches during the two weeks I’ve been using it as my primary device.
The only notable issue I’ve experienced is related to Bluetooth connectivity. Occasionally, when I place my OnePlus buds back in their case and put it in my pocket, the Bluetooth connection still recognizes them as connected, leading to no audio output through the speakers. Furthermore, the Bluetooth audio can become choppy at times. However, a simple solution of turning Bluetooth off and on again resolves the problem. Hopefully, this issue will be addressed in a future update.
Regarding storage, the OnePlus 11 offers options of 128 or 256 gigabytes of UFS 4.0 space, ensuring fast and efficient performance. However, similar to most flagship phones, there is no support for microSD cards.
As for the in-display optical fingerprint sensor, it has been working flawlessly, providing reliable and responsive biometric authentication. It is quick to unlock the device, with only occasional hiccups when my fingers are slightly moist. Nevertheless, the OnePlus 11 offers the fantastic alternative of Face Unlock for those instances.
OnePlus 11 Display and Audio
Now, let’s talk about the OnePlus 11’s 6.7-inch AMOLED display. It features the fancy-pants LTPO 3.0 technology, which brings the next level of variable refresh rate. It smoothly transitions from one Hertz all the way up to 120 Hertz, depending on your usage, providing a seamless UI experience while conserving power when a higher refresh rate is unnecessary. During the couple of weeks I’ve been testing the OnePlus 11, I haven’t noticed any glitches, judder, tearing, or display issues whatsoever. The LTPO technology has been working flawlessly, ensuring a consistently smooth display.
Speaking of power efficiency, it’s hard to determine the exact impact of the energy-saving aspect, but I can reveal a spoiler: the battery life of the OnePlus 11 is outstanding. This suggests that the LTPO technology is indeed making a difference.
As expected from a flagship smartphone, the OnePlus 11 delivers excellent picture quality. With a resolution of 3216 by 1440 pixels, the display is sharp and vibrant. It offers wide viewing angles and reaches impressive brightness levels, making it easy to use outdoors without any visibility concerns. Additionally, it supports 10-bit color reproduction, Dolby Vision, HDR10+, and other cutting-edge technologies.
The stereo speakers on the OnePlus 11 are more than capable for activities like video chatting or watching YouTube videos. I didn’t encounter any issues with Bluetooth 5.3 streaming. As I mentioned before, you can enjoy LHDC support and all major audio codecs. The device also offers Dolby Atmos for a top-notch audio experience.
Overall, the OnePlus 11’s display and audio qualities are highly impressive.
Performance and Gaming Test
The OnePlus 11 is equipped with the powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor, and it doesn’t stop there. It also boasts a generous 16 gigabytes of DDR5 RAM, making it incredibly speedy. Everyday app usage is smooth as silk, and even when playing demanding games like Genshin Impact at higher detail settings and running at 60 frames per second, I noticed only a single frame drop throughout my entire gaming experience.
During extended gaming sessions of 15 to 20 minutes, the back of the OnePlus 11 does warm up slightly. However, it doesn’t escalate beyond that point. This can be attributed to the general efficiency of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor, as well as OnePlus’s Cryo Velocity Vapor Chamber coolant system, which is the largest one yet implemented in a OnePlus phone. Furthermore, the device incorporates graphene layers for improved heat dissipation. These cooling mechanisms, combined with the OxygenOS gaming enhancements, create an optimal gaming experience.
The OxygenOS gaming mode offers a plethora of excellent features. You can adjust the screen sensitivity according to your preference, and there are various performance and distraction-free modes available. OnePlus has truly packed the gaming experience on the OnePlus 11 to the brim with fantastic features.
OnePlus 11 Battery life
Overall, the OnePlus 11 offers fantastic performance, but what’s even more impressive is its battery life. With a 5000 milliamp-hour battery, which is the same size as last year’s model and just slightly larger than the 10T 5G, the OnePlus 11 manages to deliver significantly improved battery life. Even with my typical usage of five to six hours of screen-on time in a single day, I consistently found the OnePlus 11 still had around 40% charge remaining by the end of an exceptionally long day. This usage included extensive camera use, approximately an hour of Skype or Zoom calls, and plenty of podcast or music streaming, all while the screen was hibernating. Remarkably, the device still had 30 to 40% battery life when I finally collapsed into bed, face down and completely exhausted.
There are likely several factors contributing to this impressive improvement in battery life. The energy efficiency of the Snapdragon platform plays a role, as well as the LTPO 3.0 screen technology and various software optimizations working behind the scenes.
When it’s time to recharge, the OnePlus 11 supports 100-watt SuperVOOC wired charging. Although it’s not as fast as the 150-watt charging on last year’s OnePlus 10T, it still charges the device from empty to full in about half an hour. So, you can simply plug it in for 20 minutes while you freshen up in the morning, and by the time you’re ready to go, it’ll be fully charged.
However, it’s worth noting that the OnePlus 11 lacks wireless charging, which may disappoint some users. Nevertheless, for most people, the absence of wireless charging likely won’t be a deal-breaker considering the other exceptional features and performance the device offers.
OnePlus 11 Camera
Finally, let’s take a look at the camera technology on the OnePlus 11. It features Sony’s 50-megapixel IMX766 sensor as the main camera, accompanied by optical image stabilization to ensure clean and steady photos. I was particularly impressed by the accurate color reproduction, even in challenging lighting conditions. Only in very low light does the camera produce slightly warmer tones, but overall, the focus remains sharp, as long as you give it a moment. The OnePlus 11 captures intricate details in scenes, resulting in impressive photos that still hold up well even when zoomed in.
Supporting the main camera is a 32-megapixel portrait shooter with a two-times optical zoom, utilizing Sony’s IMX709 sensor. This lens allows you to capture portraits without being too close to your subject, and the adjustable bokeh effect adds to the overall appeal. However, it’s worth noting that subjects need to stay relatively still to avoid a softer, slightly blurred outcome, even in well-lit conditions.
The OnePlus 11 also includes a 48-megapixel ultra-wide-angle shooter, capable of capturing more expansive scenes. While the colors may appear slightly less realistic, the results are still sharp and appealing. Additionally, the device offers a range of filters, including those from Hasselblad, which can be enjoyable to experiment with. The Hasselblad partnership brings the iconic orange shutter button to the OnePlus 11 and includes the Hasselblad Pro Mode, allowing you to adjust various camera settings and capture RAW or RAW+ video.
When it comes to video, the OnePlus 11 holds its ground against many flagship rivals. It offers impressively smooth and stable 8K resolution video, although for storage-saving reasons, you may prefer to stick with 4K, which still produces excellent footage. While it may not match the low-light capabilities of the Oppo Find X5 Pro, the OnePlus 11 performs competently in reasonably lit environments. Audio capture is also noteworthy, with no issues even in windy conditions.
As for the 16-megapixel selfie camera, it captures respectable shots suitable for sharing. The portrait mode generally works well, but it’s advisable to remove earbuds, as they may cause part of your ear to disappear in the photo. In low-light situations, the screen flash proves useful to avoid grainy results. The front-facing camera offers video recording at Full HD or 4K resolution, providing flexibility for your needs. However, it’s best to avoid aiming it directly at your nose for more flattering results. Audio pickup is excellent, and I encountered no issues during video calls on platforms like Skype.
And that, right there, concludes my full and final frank review of the OnePlus 11. I must say, after using it as my primary smartphone for a couple of weeks, I have very few complaints. It was a delightful device to use, particularly due to its impressive battery life and excellent performance. While it doesn’t introduce anything groundbreaking, it certainly excels in all the essential aspects. There were just a couple of minor glitches that I’m confident will be addressed through post-launch updates. That’s my take on it, but I’m curious to hear your thoughts. Are you tempted by the OnePlus 11? Feel free to share your opinions in the comments below.