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The OnePlus 3 is the best smartphone purchase I’ve made in years

by Todd Haselton | June 21, 2016June 21, 2016 11:40 am PDT

There’s a common joke among our podcast listeners: each episode, someone asks me what I returned this week. I don’t know what my deal is, but I love the rush of getting a new gadget, and, ultimately, after the dopamine rush has settled, I usually either keep or return the gadget I bought on a whim. I was super excited about the OnePlus 3, even so much as going to visit the OnePlus 3 pop-up store on opening day to buy my own unit.

I started to wonder, though, if this was just another dopamine fix or if I was really going to like this phone and keep it. So far, it’s the best purchase I’ve made in years, and I’m going to keep running it as my daily driver. That’s saying something, too, because I’ve bought a lot of smartphones so far this year (I think, anyway.) I own the Galaxy S7 Edge, for example, and the Nextbit Robin and the iPhone 6s Plus. I’ve reviewed or played with a dozen or more flagship smartphones, too, everything ranging from the Nexus 6P to the Huawei P9, BlackBerry Priv, LG G5, HTC 10 and others. I just can’t kick my love for the OnePlus 3.

Now, I admit, I loved a lot of those phones this much after I bought them, too. The difference is that the OnePlus 3 is priced at a fraction of the cost. It’s not tied to AT&T as my Galaxy S7 Edge is. It offers a faster processor and more RAM than the Nextbit Robin, easily winning that battle, and, well, my iPhone is my iPhone. I’m kind of bored with it, but it’s reliable and I use it for iMessages.

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I haven’t even really enjoyed the metal body of the OnePlus 3 yet, which is kind of funny considering that’s one of the highlight features. Instead, I’ve kept it in the sandstone case which is so thin that I frequently forget it’s actually a case. I’ve also enjoyed using the OnePlus 3 for snapping pictures of my budding garden. With manual mode, I’m blown away at the detail I can get from the camera.

The battery is solid, too, usually getting me right to the end of the day. When I need a charge, I just toss it on the charger and grab about a 60 percent charge in 30 minutes. It’s incredibly convenient. I don’t even miss wireless charging; it still feels too slow. Samsung’s devices charge fast, too, don’t get me wrong, but they cost more and the charging doesn’t work as well with the screen on, a nice pro to the OnePlus 3 Dash Charge feature.

I won’t be returning the OnePlus 3 anytime soon and, indeed, look forward to using it for the foreseeable future. I’m excited to try the dual SIM feature if I make my way to Berlin for IFA this September, too.


Todd Haselton

Todd Haselton has been writing professionally since 2006 during his undergraduate days at Lehigh University. He started out as an intern with...

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