It stole some of the thunder from the OnePlus 7 Pro when it was launched alongside it a few months ago, but that was mainly because of a price tag that was much lower than expected. And even more significantly, well below the much more premium OnePlus 7 Pro. However, even at that stage, there was no doubt that the OnePlus 7 was pretty much the junior, more pocket-friendly partner of the new OnePlus partnership, with the 7 Pro taking the premium slot. Well, that “Pro and not Pro” distinction got muddled when OnePlus took the wraps off the OnePlus 7T yesterday.
For, the OnePlus 7T picked up some of the features that were the preserve of the Pro – the display with the 90 Hz refresh rate display, the triple camera set up – and even got a better processor (Snapdragon 850+), all this while still having a price tag that was significantly lower than that of its Pro bro (Rs 37,999 as against Rs 48,999).
And by doing so, it also presented those thinking of investing in a OnePlus device with a new quandary – should they go for the OnePlus 7 Pro or the OnePlus 7T? The answer is by no means clear cut. Here’s what we think at the moment of writing:
If looks matter, go Pro
Does appearance matter to you? Well, the OnePlus 7T with its matte frosted glass back looks much more premium than the OnePlus 7, but the Pro with its gently curved display (with no notch) and sides still holds the edge in that regard. The spherical camera unit on the back of the 7T is divisive – some love it, some see it as a Motorola design knock-off and do not like the fact that it protrudes. We are voting for the Pro here, even though it is slightly larger and a bit heavier.
If display matters, stay with the Pro
Both phones come with OnePlus’ AMOLED Fluid Display with a 90 Hz refresh rates. However, the 7 Pro not only has a curved edge display but also a higher resolution (QHD+) as compared to the 7T (full HD+), but also a slightly larger display (6.67 inches as compared to 6.55 inches). We are going with the Pro again here.
Wanna chip in? Go T!
If you are the type that covets processor power, then the OnePlus 7T wins easily – it has the newer Snapdragon 855+ processor, which is the latest flagship chip from Qualcomm and is supposed to be an improvement over the Snapdragon 855 which powers the 7 Pro. The difference won’t jump out at you, but it does exist!
Similar memories, but the Pro is Plus RAM
In terms of RAM and storage, there are some differences. The OnePlus 7T comes with 8GB/128 GN and 8 GB/ 256 GB variants, while the 7 Pro has these variants as well as a 6GB/ 128 GB variant and even a 12 GB/ 256 GB variant. Both devices have UFS 3.0 storage incidentally. The 12 GB RAM variant gives this one again to the Pro.
Gaming and multi-tasking – no blues expected
With that sort of RAM and chip combinations, we do not expect anything but the smoothest gaming and multiplayer-tasking. Will that slightly better chip make a difference for the OnePlus 7T? Well, it might, but based on our early impressions, the difference is not discernible. The bigger, curved display of the 7 Pro might appeal to some for browsing, playing games and videos but the difference is not a colossal one.
Triple camera rumble – too close to call!
Both phones come with triple cameras and both have a Sony IMX586 48 megapixel sensor with a large f/1.6 aperture and optical image stabilization. But there the similarity ends. The 7T comes with a 12-megapixel telephoto lens and a 16-megapixel ultra-wide-angle lens, while the 7 Pro has an 8-megapixel telephoto and a 16-megapixel ultra-wide. The megapixel count seems to favor the OnePlus 7T, but significantly, the Pro has OIS on the telephoto sensor as well, even though it has a smaller aperture (f/2.4) as against f/2.2 on the 7T. The 7T is supposed to come with a number of camera touch-ups (including a macro mode and more stable video) as well, but as of now, the difference between the two devices seems very marginal at best. We will know more in the coming days, but as of now, it seems a tie, which is very interesting when you consider the price gap between the two devices.
Selfie cameras – pop-up or notch, really
Both the OnePlus 7T and the OnePlus 7 Pro come with a 16-megapixel selfie camera, with broadly similar specifications. The difference between them, however, is one of functionality. The OnePlus 7 Pro’s selfie camera is a pop-up camera while the one on the 7T is inside a notch. Each has its pro and cons – the pop-up camera leaves you with a clear, unhindered view of the display, but is a tad slower than its notch-y counterpart. The notched selfie camera of the OnePlus 7T works faster but on the flip side, does intrude on your viewing experience. The 7T’s selfie snapper is perhaps better for those who use Face Unlock a lot, but that apart, there’s nothing much to separate the two.
Software: a breath of Oxygen, either way
The OnePlus 7T was the first phone to come with Android 10 out of the box, but even as this is being written, OnePlus is rolling out Android 10 updates to the 7 Pro as well. Of course, both phones run on Oxygen OS that is built on top of Android. Once again, it gets kind of difficult to choose a winner here. At the time of writing, Android 10 gives the 7T a super slight edge, but that could disappear in a day or two with the OS rollout going on.
The T has the charge, the Pro has the mAh
Which brings us to the matter of battery. And here it really gets interesting. While the 7 Pro has the larger battery (4000 mAh as compared to 3800 mAh), the 7T gets Warp Charge 30T, which is “23 percent faster” than the Warp Charge 30 found on the OnePlus 7 Pro. Although the 7 Pro packs in more mAh, it is notable that it also has a larger display with a higher resolution, which means the battery drain will be higher. These are early days to draw clear cut conclusions but we suspect the 7T will enjoy a slight edge here in terms of battery stamina, and even if it does not, it will charge faster.
Dolby Atmos on both, 3.5 mm audio jack on either
The OnePlus 7T and the OnePlus 7 Pro both are very well endowed in the sound department, coming with stereo speakers and Dolby Atmos support. Neither, however, has a 3.5 mm audio jack, which means you are going to have to rely on USB Type-C port headphones or wireless ones, but then that is a trend that is being followed by most flagships now
So, which One(Plus)?
All of which brings us back to the question of which one of the two OnePlus devices is the one to go for? Get out your priority list and consult it to get a better idea, for each device has its own pros and cons.
There are some who insist that the 7T brings all the goodness of the 7Pro at a lower price, but that is oversimplifying matters. The stark fact is that the 7 Pro still has a larger and higher resolution display and notwithstanding the circular camera design skulduggery on the back of the 7T, still looks the more premium, courtesy those curved sides, and does not concede any significant ground in terms of overall performance.
That said, no one can deny that the 7T gets a better processor and faster charging and an improved design (over the rather basic OnePlus 7) and starts at a much lower price – you can bury the 8 GB/ 256 GB variant of the 7T at Rs 39,999, which is well below the Rs 48,999 starting price of the OnePlus 7 Pro, which offers a 6 GB /128 GB for that higher price.
Spec worshippers and those on a tighter budget will adore the OnePlus 7T, but we think the OnePlus 7 Pro remains the more premium offering at the time of writing.
Until the OnePlus 7T Pro comes along, that is. But that…is another story.
Buy OnePlus 7T on Amazon (Link available soon)
Buy OnePlus 7 Pro on Amazon