For years, OnePlus phones have delivered exciting new features, affordable prices, and more. For 2020, that’s changed a bit. The OnePlus 8 series was significantly more expensive, but it finally brought some much-needed improvements. Now, we’ve got the OnePlus 8T, a redesigned and slightly improved version of this year’s less-exciting phone.

The OnePlus 8T has been my main smartphone for the past few days, and, getting right to the point, I don’t think there’s a ton to say about it. It’s a really good phone, just like the OnePlus 8 was. It’s fast, it has a great spec package, and it’s relatively affordable in a world of overly expensive flagships. It also has a good design that, while a bit derivative of Samsung’s Galaxy S20, looks nice!

I honestly don’t have anything to complain about with the OnePlus 8T, at least based on my first impressions. The camera seems slightly improved from the 8 (samples below) and battery life is solid, too. OxygenOS 11 speeds with this hardware as well, which I thoroughly enjoyed.

My problem with this phone? It honestly doesn’t have much of a reason to exist. It has essentially the same hardware as the OnePlus 8, just with countless hours spent redesigning its shell. There’s no notable spec bump here, just an updated camera sensor and a slightly faster refresh rate to the display. That display, too, is flat this time around, which, admittedly, does make me love it compared to both the OnePlus 8 and OnePlus 8T.

The only clear reason OnePlus has to launch this phone, however, is Warp Charge 65. The company’s new charging standard is ridiculously quick with a full charge quoted in just 39 minutes. In my testing, though, I often found the 8T beating that estimate by a couple of minutes. Generally, plugging in at 1% left the estimate for recharge at around 36-37 minutes. In any case, it’s crazy fast.

With the new standard too, OnePlus ditched the USB-A to USB-C cable it’s been using for years. Finally! C to C! This means you can also use that brick with a laptop or tablet that supports USB-C. It’s a win-win and something OnePlus was very overdue for. I think it’s just a shame that wireless charging wasn’t included. The insanely quick speeds are nice, sure, but they don’t change the minor frustration of trying to plug a phone into power in a dark bedroom as you’re falling asleep.

The OnePlus 8T is, again, a really good phone. It gets just about everything right, and for people that value ridiculously fast charging, $749 is a killer value especially given the extra storage and RAM. However, I think most people would have been better served if OnePlus had just kept its focus on the OnePlus 8 series and saved Warp Charge 65 for the OnePlus 9. Instead, the company just has another phone to maintain that doesn’t really justify existing in the first place.

If it does interest you, OnePlus 8T is available for pre-order today.

OnePlus 8T camera samples

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Ben Schoon

Ben is a writer and video producer for 9to5Google.

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