In recent times, it has become increasingly difficult to persuade the average consumer that they require a new smartphone. This is not only due to the fact that all devices now effortlessly handle the same basic tasks, but also because the search for new and noteworthy features seems like navigating an empty landscape.
AI elements and folding displays might show potential, but most of us are satisfied with a phone that can text, call, and surf the web without any hassle. The idea of upgrading to something only slightly better isn’t very appealing. As the old saying goes: If it isn’t damaged, don’t repair it.
Having said that, you might anticipate the new Oneplus 12 to be uninteresting given its absence of flashy features— the screen doesn’t fold and AI features are non-existent. However, after weeks of usage, I’ve discovered that it excels when it comes to the basics, from exceptional battery life to fast charging speeds and dynamic processing power to a vibrant display. In these regards, it’s among the finest smartphones I’ve used in years, ticking all the essential boxes like a true flagship should. And that might just be enough to make you ponder if it’s *finally* time for an upgrade.
With a starting price of $800 for the Oneplus 12 boasting 12GB of RAM, or a slightly heftier $900 for the 16GB version, it’s shaping up to be a sweeter deal compared to other flagship phones, including the Google Pixel 8 Pro and Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra. But the Oneplus 12 isn’t without its peculiarities. After weeks of thorough testing, here’s how it performs as Android’s third-ranking smartphone.
Display size: 6.82 inches | Display type: AMOLED (3,168 x 1,440 pixel resolution) | RAM: Up to 16GB | Storage: Up to 512GB | Battery: 5,400 mAh | Dimensions: 6.4 x 2.9 x 0.3 inches | Weight: 7.7 ounces | Front camera: 32 megapixels | Rear camera: 50 megapixels (main), 48 megapixels (ultra-wide), 64 megapixels (telephoto) | Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 | OS: Android 14, OxygenOS
Stellar battery life and 100W wired fast charging
Top-tier processing power
A large, vibrant display
You prefer a stock Android experience
Four years of OS upgrades isn’t sufficient
You need full waterproof protection
Oneplus 12: Design
It’s A Looker
Borrowing cues from its predecessor, the Oneplus 12 looks impressive from almost every angle. Its large, 6.8-inch Gorilla Glass Victus 2 display curves and flows over the edges where it meets aluminum side rails, and a matte-finished back enhances grip. Available in Flowy Emerald and Silky Black, the green unit I received (that looks blue in flat light) features marbled-like striations that catch the eye and complement bits of glitter sprinkled throughout the camera cluster. The Oneplus 12 is tall and slim, making it easy to hold and fit into pockets. All the buttons are easily accessible. The screen boasts an adaptive refresh rate of 1Hz to 120Hz, reaching a peak brightness of 4,500 nits. However, its durability is lacking, with an IP65 rating.
Oneplus 12: Features
Let’s Talk About The Battery
The Oneplus 12 comes with a 5,400mAh battery that lasts up to 36 hours under normal use, and a proprietary SuperVooc 100W wired charging that fully charges the phone in 37 minutes. The phone also supports wireless charging up to 50W with Oneplus’ AirVooc charging stand.
The Cameras Are Mostly Comparable
Partnering with Hasselblad for its cameras, the Oneplus 12 has a primary 50MP sensor, a 48MP ultra-wide lens, and a periscopic design 64MP telephoto lens. The front-facing camera features a 32MP sensor, and the phone can shoot in 8K resolution with the ability to record in Dolby Vision-enhanced HDR. However, the camera quality is average compared to the competition.
OxygenOS Is Good, But Not Great
Running OxygenOS 14 based on Android 14, the system feels clunky and intrusive, and it won’t let Google Photos serve as the default photo app. Oneplus promises four years of Android upgrades and five years of security updates.
Oneplus 12: Performance
Don’t Break A Sweat
With 12GB of RAM and the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3, the Oneplus 12’s performance is exceptional, handling tasks with ease and running high-performance mode hidden within the power management settings.
Oneplus 12: Verdict
Brilliance In The Basics
The Oneplus 12 zeroes in on what really matters to users, focusing on the fundamentals like the display, build quality, processing power, fast charging, and camera array. By crafting a smartphone experience focused on what users genuinely want, the Oneplus 12 stands out in a world of experimentation.
This review was conducted by Forbes Vetted gear editor Cam Vigliotta, who also tests out the latest smartphones. His work has appeared in publications like Gear Junkie, Field Mag, and REI’s Uncommon Path.
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