OnePlus’ smartphone journey has been anything but predictable. The brand started out as a flagship killer that gave conventional flagships a run for their money, then graduated to being a flagship itself, and then post-graduated to fighting it out with the likes of Apple and Samsung in the high-priced premium flagship stakes. And now it seems to have gone back to being a regular flagship with the OnePlus 11 5G (hereafter referred to in body copy as “OnePLus 11” for the sake of simplicity).

oneplus 11 review

OnePlus 11 5G Design: Following a Pro template

It might come with no “Pro” suffix attached, but the OnePlus 11 broadly follows the OnePlus 10 Pro’s design template. At a time when many brands are experimenting with straight sides and flat backs, OnePlus has opted to go with the classic curved sides and back look for the OnePlus 11. And it looks very smart indeed, with a tall Corning Gorilla Glass Victus curved display on the front and Gorilla Glass 5 back. We got the Titan Black edition, and while it will not make people turn their heads in surprise, those who do see it will come back for another glance or three. The front is pretty much standard Android flagship – tall with tiny bezels and a punch-hole notch – but it is the back that will grab more attention.

The main reason for that is the large spherical camera unit with Hasselblad branding placed in a stainless enclosure on the top left of the back. Not everyone will like it, and it does pick up a lot of dust, but there is no doubt that it also makes the OnePlus 11 stand out in the sea of sameness that other Android flagships tend to sail on. The slightly textured back also has a hint of shine, bringing back memories of the famous Sandstone finish on the OG OnePlus. The frame is aluminum, and on its right are a power/display lock button and the Alert Slider, the rumors of whose demise have clearly been exaggerated. The volume rocker is on the left. The base houses the dual SIM slot, a USB Type C port, and a speaker grille, while the top is plain,

At 163.1 mm, the OnePlus 11 is a tall phone (the iPhone 14 Pro Max is 160 mm, for context), and although it is reasonably slim at 8.5 mm, it is definitely on the heavier side at 205 grams. Moreover, that large camera unit gives it a slightly top-heavy feeling. There is no dust or water resistance, but the phone is great to hold and has a very premium feel to it, thanks to that subtly shiny back.

OnePlus 11 5G Hardware: Decent display, super Snappy Dragon, lots of RAM and storage

oneplus 11 review specs

The OnePlus 11 ticks pretty much all the hardware boxes you would expect a high-end Android flagship to. The curved 6.7-inch display on the front comes with a quad HD (3216 x 1440px) resolution, with LTPO support and a 120 Hz refresh rate, which changes as per the content being displayed on it all the way from 1 Hz to 120 Hz. It is a brilliant display and, although not as bright as some we have seen, is definitely right up there with the best in terms of image quality, and it comes with Dolby Vision. It also is home to an in-display fingerprint scanner.

Right up with the best is also the processor powering this phone. The OnePlus 11 runs on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip, which is the current favorite of Android flagships. In the best OnePlus flagship tradition, it comes loaded with RAM and storage – 8 GB RAM and 128 GB storage and 16 GB RAM and 256 GB storage. The big numbers continue in the camera department as well.

oneplus 11 display

The back has a trio of high-quality Sony sensors – a main 50-megapixel Sony IMX890 sensor with OIS, a 32-megapixel Sony IMX 709 tele portrait lens (more on which later) with 2x optical zoom, and a 48-megapixel IMX581 ultrawide sensor with 115-degree field of view. The front camera is a 16-megapixel one, however, which is a bit of a step down from the 32-megapixel one on the OnePlus 11 Pro. The phone also comes with stereo speakers with Dolby Atmos and a large 5000 mAh battery with support for 100W charging and a 100W charger in the box as well. There is support for 5G, and the phone comes with Android 13 right out of the box with OxygenOS 13 running on top.

A notable absentee in this hardware party is wireless charging, but that apart, the OnePlus 11 is a very well-stacked device in hardware terms. In pure spec terms, it can give pretty much any Android flagship out there a run for its money.

OnePlus 11 5G: Performance: Gaming rockstar, regular workhorse

oneplus 11 performance

All those specs come together to deliver a very good performance indeed. The OnePlus 11 is capable of handling literally any game or any number of tasks that you throw at it. We played Call of Duty and Genshin Impact at maxed-out settings, and the experience was a smooth one, with the phone not even getting heated up at any stage. The display is terrific for viewing content, whether it is games or series, and the sound from the speakers is not the loudest but scores in terms of quality. You can even edit videos on the phone easily.

With that sort of spec sheet, it is hardly any surprise that the phone rocks general tasks. The display is great for browsing the Web, and social media feeds, and with all that RAM on board, you can keep your emails and message apps running in the background without your main task getting affected in any way. We do not know if OnePlus’ RAM-Vita memory management system should get credit for this, and we did not actually try running more than forty apps at the same time to try it out. Still, the OnePlus 11 ran more than a dozen apps at the same time with no trouble at all. The fingerprint sensor also worked smoothly enough, and call quality was good, with 5G working right out of the box with our Airtel SIM in Delhi.

OnePlus 11 5G Battery: Wired only, but STILL a super fast charger

oneplus 11 battery

The 5000 mAh battery lasts a day of heavy use and can easily get past a day if you handle it carefully. OnePlus’ decision to go with 100W fast charging might seem like a step down from the 150W charging (and 160W chargers) on the OnePlus 10R and OnePlus 10T, but in actual usage, the difference did not affect us. The 100W charger that accompanies the OnePlus 11 charges the 5000 mAh battery of the phone in about 25-30 minutes. It might not be as fast as the 20-22 minute charging time of the OnePlus 10T, but it is more than fast enough for us, and most consumers too, we think. Not too many sit with a stopwatch seeing how quickly their phones are being topped up by their battery chargers.

On the other hand, the absence of wireless charging might be seen as a miss by many, as there are devices in that price segment that come with that feature. OnePlus itself has been featuring wireless charging and reverse wireless charging on its flagships for a while, all the way back to the OnePlus 7 Pro. There was a stage when the brand even seemed to be championing speedy wireless charging, but that seems to have been put on hold for a while. We do not see the absence of wireless charging as a deal-breaker for those considering the OnePlus 11, but its absence definitely rankles, given the brand’s own push for the feature in the past.

OnePlus 11 Cameras: Finally, great cameras

oneplus 11 camera

We have covered the performance of the cameras on the OnePlus 11 in a detailed review earlier. In short, they are very impressive indeed. So impressive that we think that the OnePlus 11 can give the likes of the Pixel 7 Pro and the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra a run for their money. We found the 50-megapixel main sensor churns out some great shots in terms of color and detail, although some might find the colors a little on the saturated side. However, the real surprise comes from the secondary cameras.

The 48-megapixel ultrawide camera is one of the best we have seen on Android in terms of color and detail, but the real surprise is the 32-megapixel Tele Portrait camera. It captured some of the best portrait snaps we have seen from any smartphone, often with surprisingly well-defined subjects and bokeh that did not look software-generated, justifying some of the hype around it being based on Hasselblad’s own cameras.

What’s more, all three cameras turned in very good performances in low light and night conditions, too, with the main and Tele Portrait sensors handling flare from light sources very well and delivering surprisingly rich colors and reasonable detail without trying to light up the night artificially. In terms of pure still photography, we would say that the OnePlus 11 is now in the flagship zone and running the Pixel 7 Pro and the Galaxy S22 Ultra very close indeed. Perhaps that Hasselblad tie-up is finally making a difference. Speaking of Hasselblad, you get the legendary camera maker’s Xpan mode and three special filters on the OnePlus 11.

It is not all roses in the OnePlus 11 cameraland, though. The 16-megapixel selfie camera is a bit of a letdown, although it does a decent enough job for social media. The rear camera video quality is also acceptable but not exceptional. Finally, we think the device’s camera interface needs a workover and options made more easily accessible. The clean Oxygen OS interface might attract phone purists, but general phone camera users will have to look around for even something as basic as HDR. Still, we think the OnePlus 11 is a giant step forward for the phone as far as camera performance goes.

OnePlus 11 Software: Still clean UI, though OxygenOS is getting a little Color-ful

oxygen os 13

One of the biggest complaints that many users have had about OnePlus is the fact that its interface has changed and has taken on shades of ColorOS ever since the brand entered a strategic tie-up with Oppo in 2021. There had even been talking of ColorOS and OxygenOS being blended into one, a move that sparked such outrage among the OnePlus faithful that the brand had to backtrack on it. But concerns in the community about OxygenOS continue.

The OnePlus 11 runs on Android 13 and comes with OxygenOS 13 on top of it. And while the icons might have a hint of Color OS about them, the basic essence of OxygenOS remains intact. The interface remains clean, if not quite as bare as in the past, and there is no bloatware apart from some basic system apps and Netflix. This is still one of the cleanest interfaces in the Android world. The phone comes with assurances of four Android updates and five years of security updates. That is impressive, although we suspect a lot of folks will be more concerned about how OxygenOS itself will evolve as Oppo and OnePlus get on closer terms. As of now, we can safely say that most OxygenOS fans will like OxygenOS 13 on the OnePlus 11.

oneplus 11 price

One of the most notable features of the software on the OnePlus 11 is not just that it works smoothly but that it has received no “updates” to “fix issues,” “quash bugs,” and “improve performance” shortly before and/or after the phone was launched. This is definitely a first for a OnePlus flagship in India. Mind you; we wish the phone had shipped with a more recent security patch – our unit came with the December 2022 security patch, but that’s still a minor thing in comparison.

OnePlus 11 Review Verdict: Should you buy it?

The OnePlus 11 has been greeted by many with shouts of “the old OnePlus is back,” mainly because it starts at a significantly lower price than last year’s flagship, the OnePlus 10 Pro. The OnePlus 11 starts at Rs 56,999 for the 8 GB/ 128 GB variant and has a 16 GB/ 256 GB variant available for Rs 61,999, as compared to the OnePlus 10 Pro, which had started at Rs 66,999 for the 8 GB/ 128 GB variant and Rs 71,999 for the 12 GB/ 256 GB variant. At a time when smartphone prices have been rising, cutting back the price of a flagship certainly is an achievement.

oneplus 11 review verdict

What, however, needs to be kept in mind is that these price cuts have been accompanied by some spec compromises, too – the slower charging, the less powerful charger in the box, and the removal of wireless charging. Also, while the OnePlus 11 is priced lower than the OnePlus 10 Pro, it is still very much in the premium flagship zone rather than in the flagship-killing one. There is reason to suspect that OnePlus’ own OnePlus 11R, which starts at Rs 39,999, might be more of a flagship killer in terms of sheer value for money, even though it runs a slightly older chip and has no Hasselblad cameras.

The OnePlus 11 is not a flagship killer but a very refined premium flagship at a price that is very competitive in its segment. At the time of writing, the OnePlus 11 was actually the most affordable device in the Indian market with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip, which in itself makes it a compelling proposition for anyone wanting a premium flagship without performance and design compromises at the least price! Yes, it does face challenges.

oneplus 11 review

Perhaps the most high-profile challenger is the Google Pixel 7 at Rs 59,999, which comes with a less powerful processor, but better cameras, software smarts, clean Android (with assured updates) as well as wireless charging, although with no charger in the box, and a markedly inferior display. There is also the iQOO 11, which is also priced at Rs 59,999 and has the same processor as the OnePlus 11 but starts with 256 GB storage, has faster charging, and a brighter display. Some might even think of investing in the older Samsung Galaxy S22 and the iPhone 13, both of which remain good options even now if all one wants is a flagship-level performance.

The OnePlus 11, however, remains a terrific proposition for anyone who wants a spec monster packaged inside a smart, elegant design under Rs 60,000 At the time of writing, we would even go so far as to say that it is perhaps the best value-for-money phone below Rs 60,000.

Buy OnePlus 11 5G

Buy OnePlus 11 (USA)

  • Very good cameras
  • Flagship level performance
  • Works smoothly
  • Good battery life
  • No wireless charging
  • No dust or water resistance
  • Mediocre selfie camera
Review Overview
Appearance & Design

OnePlus 11 is perhaps the most affordable premium Android flagship in the market right now. But does it have what it takes to rattle the cages of the Pixels and the Galaxy S series? With that great price tag come a few compromises.

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