OnePlus 10T Review: A Supercharged OnePlus 10 Pro Sans The Iconic Alert Slider

The OnePlus 10T is a supercharged OnePlus 10 Pro with a few aces up its sleeve
OnePlus 10T Review: A Supercharged OnePlus 10 Pro Sans The Iconic Alert Slider

For years, OnePlus had a consistent strategy. There was the “flagship” launch in the year's first half followed by a spec bump “T” variant in the latter half. Recently though, OnePlus has started launching Pro and standard variants during their “flagship” launch event, That means, that the “T” series kind of got sidelined. 2022 has been an exception to the OnePlus strategy. 

The OnePlus 10 Pro was launched in March of this year but there was no sign of any standard variant. Fast forward five months and we’ve been greeted with the OnePlus 10T, with some interesting improvements - 150W charging and the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 - and some downgrades - screen, build and camera specifications - to make for up for the lack of a standard variant. The OnePlus 10T is the most “flagship killer” OnePlus smartphone we’ve seen in years! 

There are a few questions to be asked here; 

- Is the OnePlus 10T worth your hard-earned money? 

- Is the OnePlus 10T a smartphone for the enthusiasts out there? 

- Is speed all that matters in a smartphone? 

Let me answer those questions and more. 

What is the OnePlus 10T? 

The OnePlus 10T is a supercharged OnePlus 10 Pro with a few aces up its sleeve. It’s got Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 chipset, and a ridiculously fast 150 charging but cuts back in some key areas to keep the OnePlus 10T price lower than the OnePlus 10 Pro. 

OnePlus has squarely targeted the OnePlus 10T at enthusiasts and gamers looking for a supercharged smartphone at an affordable price point. With the OnePlus 10T, the company has promised three years of Android updates and four years of security patches. The smartphone runs Oxygen OS 12.1 out of the box, with the Oxygen OS 13 update imminent. 

Where has the OnePlus 10T cut corners, you may ask? First and foremost, the iconic alert slider is gone. Second, Hasselblad’s magic is missing in the OnePlus 10T. OnePlus, for its part, has said that the alert slider had to be cut to accommodate a larger battery capacity, better antenna signal and high wattage charging. 

OnePlus 10T

OnePlus has omitted a fan favourite in the alert slider and that is going to irk more than a fair share of their consumer base. It’s baffling as to why the company would remove something that is iconic and instantly associated with the brand. Nonetheless, the OnePlus 10T is a OnePlus smartphone sans the alert slider. 

Let’s take a look at the design and that display 

The OnePlus 10T has got the same design as the OnePlus 10 Pro sans the alert slider. Looking at them side-by-side and you wouldn’t be able to tell them apart. There’s the camera bump on the back and the familiar size and shape for both models. Looking at the front and the 10T misses the curved display of the 10 Pro. The 10T also has no Hasselblad branding, and the selfie camera is in the centre of the top of the display as opposed to the corner of the 10 Pro.  

The back of the 10T curves into the camera bump and doesn’t cut off abruptly like on the 10 Pro. That’s one advantage. The downside is, that despite having a textured look and Corning Gorilla Glass 5, the smartphone is slippery. 

The Jade Green version I have for review is very unlike the extremely likeable matte finish on the 10 Pro. The 10T is glossy and doesn’t feel as premium. There’s also the plastic mid-frame with the 10T. 

With the 10T, you’re getting a 6.7-inch AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate. It’s a flat display and full HD. The 10T tops out at 950 nits, which is less than the 10 Pro. The resolution (2412x1080 with 394 ppi) on the 10T is also less pixel-dense than the 10 Pro. 

OnePlus 10T

The 10T has stereo speakers, but unfortunately, they aren’t the best. There is a distinct shrill when used at high volumes. The speakers do get loud but you wouldn’t want to crank up the volume too much as the distortion can be annoying. 

Insane charging speeds 

The one ace up its sleeve is with regards to the charging speeds. Yes, OnePlus has marketed the charging speeds of the 10T as much as it could. While manufacturers are forgoing chargers in the box these days, OnePlus is shipping a 150W brick with the 10T. With the 150W brick, the 10T can charge from 0-100 in just 19 minutes. That’s mindboggling. 

The power brick supports USB Power Delivery (USB PD) up to 45W. While that’s good, one expected 65W or higher. Still, this is better than the 10 Pro which came with an 80W charger and didn’t support USB PD. 

The 10T lacks support for wireless charging and this is something that a lot of power users out there will sorely miss. 

There are two downsides to having “one charger to rule them all” with the 10T. First, the insanely fast charging happens only when you use the supplied adapter and cable. Second, it’s not like the charging brick is small. 

The upside is that the 10T doesn’t have to be charged all that frequently. With the 10T, I was routinely getting over 6 hours of screen-on-time. The Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 is proving to be a very efficient chip and couple that with Oxygen OS and you get really good battery life. 

Sans-Hasselblad, is the 10T’s camera up to the mark? 

The 10T comes with a 50MP primary sensor, 8MP ultrawide camera and a 2MP macro sensor. It’s clear that OnePlus has geared the 10T towards extracting maximum performance rather than a well-rounded device. The 10T’s cameras are clearly a downgrade from the 10 Pro. 

To cut down on the price, OnePlus has forgone the Hasselblad collaboration that was seen on the 10 Pro. The 10 Pro is clearly the company’s flagship smartphone when it comes to camera chops. 

For day-to-day usage, the 10T will serve you just fine. But in any kind of challenging scenario, the photo quality noticeable drops off. Also, don’t even try and zoom beyond 2x because photos will venture from pretty to not-so-pretty really quickly. Simply put, there are better cameras than the competition in this segment. 

I don’t often talk about videos, but if you’re in the market for a smartphone to vlog with, then please skip the 10T. For whatever reason, OnePlus has omitted any kind of stability on the 10T cameras. 

Performance: Top-notch 

OnePlus focused on maximising performance and with the 10T, it has delivered. With the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1, OnePlus has managed to extract as much power and performance as it could. Couple the chipset with plenty of RAM and fast storage and you get a beast of a smartphone. Moreso, if you want the best performance, just hit the toggle in the phone’s battery settings and enable high-performance mode.  

The Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 is a very efficient chipset. No matter what you throw at it, the smartphone will run it with no sweat. Play games, constantly switch apps, open multiple Chrome tabs and more. The OnePlus 10T can take it all. 

Is the OnePlus 10T for you? 

The OnePlus 10T is a boring smartphone that gets the job done quickly. It’s a smartphone that will perform all your tasks on a day-to-day basis, without breaking a sweat, but will not wow you at any point. It’s smooth and insanely fast and can be topped up in no time. 

The OnePlus 10T is a flagship killer but without the bells-and-whistles of a flagship. And I think that’s what is keeping it from being truly great. There’s no alert slider (something that OnePlus fans adore), and the camera setup isn’t up to the mark.  

The OnePlus 10T is squarely targeted at gamers and performance enthusiasts. That’s not necessarily a bad thing.  

OnePlus would rather you buy the 10 Pro over the 10T. If you can live with the compromises - a sub-par camera, no alert slider, a less efficient chipset, no wireless charging, and a glossy back panel - then the 10T is for you. For everyone else, the 10 Pro is a clear winner over the 10T. 

Now, if there was a OnePlus 10 Pro with the new Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1, then that would be the perfect OnePlus smartphone. 

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