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OnePlus 6: Images, specs and impressions from the launch

The new flagship smartphone from OnePlus will be available from 22 May, following its slick global launch event.
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1 of 10 Charles McLellan/ZDNet

London: Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

The venue for the global launch of the OnePlus 6 on 15 May was the Copper Box Arena at London's Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park -- site of the 2012 Olympic games. Over 1,000 tickets for the event were available to OnePlus Community members, at £30 ($41/€34) each: on top of a well-stocked swag bag, ticket-holders also got a voucher for a free set of OnePlus Bullets Wireless earphones worth £69 ($69/€69).

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The Speed You Need

The slogan for the event, and the new handset, betrayed a preoccupation with performance.

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One More Thing....first

As with most smartphone launches these days, the key specs of the OnePlus 6 were widely leaked beforehand. However, co-founder Carl Pei had a surprise up his sleeve in the shape of the OnePlus Bullets Wireless earphones, which he unveiled before introducing the new handset.

The new Bluetooth earphones, which will be available from 5 June at £69 ($69/€69), are rated for 8 hours of battery life (less if you turn the volume up high) and recharge quickly -- 5h of audio from 10 minutes' charging, according to the company. The earbuds clip together magnetically, pausing the music you're listening to and resuming when pulled apart. You can also answer calls by separating the earbuds.

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OnePlus 6: specs

Getting the basic OnePlus 6 specs 'out of the way' in just 60 seconds, Carl Pei called out the handset's Snapdragon 845 CPU and Adreno 630 GPU, RAM up to 8GB and storage up to 256GB, 4x4 MIMO and dual SIM support, the 6.28-inch screen, and optical image stabilisation (OIS) on the rear camera in addition to EIS (electronic image stabilisation).

Waterproofing was described as 'water resistant to daily risks of splashes and weather', but no formal IP rating was mentioned. And despite the Bullets Wireless earbuds, the presence of a 3.5mm headphone jack received a big cheer from the community faithful.

Missing in action
A MicroSD card slot and wireless charging.

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OnePlus 6: front

The OnePlus 6 has a 6.28-inch AMOLED display with a resolution of 1,080 by 2,280 pixels (19:9 aspect ratio, 402ppi). It measures 75.4mm wide by 155.7mm deep by 7.75mm thick and weighs 177g and is a minimal-bezel device with a screen to body ratio of around 83.8 percent.

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OnePlus 6: back

The 16MP and 20MP cameras, flash unit and fingerprint sensor are centrally located on the curved Gorilla Glass 5 back. Pictured here is the Midnight Black variant.

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OnePlus 6: colours

As well as Midnight Black (right), the OnePlus 6 comes in Mirror Black (left) and Silk White (middle).

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Performance & testing

What does 'The Speed You Need' mean in practice? In his keynote, Carl Pei highlighted the OnePlus 6's Snapdragon 845/8GB RAM/256GB storage credentials, along with fast charging (a day's power in 30 minutes) and quick face unlock (0.4s). Android P support will be a draw for developers, and there are performance optimisations leading to faster app launch, caching for frequently-used apps and overdraw reduction (minimising the redrawing of unchanged pixels between rendering frames). Meanwhile, in gaming mode, notifications are blocked and processing power prioritised for the gaming app.

Pei stressed OnePlus's commitment to long-term testing, revealing that the OnePlus 3 has undergone over 700 days of continuous opening and switching between 100 different apps -- the equivalent of 6 to 8 years of consumer usage. The error rate so far? Less than 0.015 percent, Pei said.

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OnePlus 6: cases

If you're wary of the OnePlus 6's glass back, a variety of bumper cases and flip covers are available to protect your handset.

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Pricing & availability

The OnePlus 6 in 64GB, 128GB and 256GB storage options will be available in North America and Europe on 22 May starting at £469 ($529/€519). The limited-edition Silk White variant with 128GB of storage will be available on 5 June.

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