OnePlus One

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20140425T100606

The Google Nexus 4, the Google Nexus 5, the Motorola Moto G, and the OnePlus One; this 5.5-inch bolt from out of the blue (well, China) joins an exclusive list of smartphones that offer an awful lot of smartphone for not a lot of money.

But having used the OnePlus One, I’m wondering whether it needs to be placed in a category all of its own.

Here is a device that rivals the HTC One M8 and the Samsung Galaxy S5 for raw specs, but at a new impressively low cost of just £219, $299 (around AU$320). That’s less than half the price of those aforementioned big hitters.

It can even go toe-to-toe with some of the newer flagship devices, such as the HTC One M9, the Galaxy S6 and the Nexus 6.

Initially you were able to order a 16GB model for £229, $299, but that option was removed for a while from the official shop. It is now back on there with a Silk White version, but if you want one, you’ll need to be fast.

The company has kept the OnePlus One relatively exclusive, though over the last few months it’s opened the door slightly to non-invitees. Every Tuesday, the OnePlus One becomes available for 24 hours beginning at 8 am GMT. The door promptly closes afterwards, but at least access is loosening up slightly.

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You can buy the OnePlus One from other stores, with prices for the 64GB edition reaching as low as £209 (around $324, AU$441) if you shop around, though if you can we’d still recommend buying from OnePlus directly for peace of mind.

The OnePlus One’s successor, the OnePlus 2, is now official, and brings some beefed up specs for another tempting price. Although this means the OnePlus One feels slightly dated, it brings the added benefit of OnePlus lowering the price of the original even further.

OnePlus 2 vs OnePlus One

Much of my early time with the OnePlus One was spent warily turning it around in my hands, like some kind of mysterious artefact of unknown origin, not quite ready to believe what was being promised of it. There has to be some compromise here, right?

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