OnePlus 10T overview The center ground
With the 8T a couple of years ago, OnePlus released a phone that was halfway between a flagship and a mid-ranger. For 2022, it’s doing the same again with the 10T.
It sits between the Nord 2T and the OnePlus 10 Pro, offering a poorer display than the flagship and adopting the build quality and camera system from the cheaper Nord 2T.
With 150W charging and a Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 processor on board here, though, the 10T does contain the power of a true flagship.
Could it be the perfect model for those who want speed without having to meet the asking price of the 10 Pro and other top-end phones? Let’s find out.
Our quick take
The 10T is a complicated phone, as it’s clear that OnePlus has had to cut back in some areas in order to fit top-tier speed into a phone that costs considerably less than the flagship 10 Pro.
Speaking purely in terms of performance, the OnePlus 10T is a winner, providing a better experience than virtually any other phone in this price range – and even some more expensive ones.
It’s really fast and responsive, and the 150W charging is an incredible feature to have at your disposal.
Elsewhere, it can feel a little bit of a compromise. The display, while good, isn’t the absolute best, and the camera, build quality and materials feel like they belong in the mid-range market.
However, value is the other big factor here. The asking price is a good chunk cheaper than the 10 Pro, so, all told, it’s an excellent option to have on your list – and a perfect fit for those who just want pacy performance across the board.
Dimensions: 163 x 75.37 x 8.75mm
Plastic frame; Gorilla Glass 5 front and back
Moonstone Black and Jade Green colours
It’s clear that the 10T comes from the same family as the 10 Pro, with it featuring the same large square camera unit on the rear. The difference, though, is that it ramps up seamlessly from the glass on the back of the phone, rather than being stuck on top.
Of course, this is a similar technique we’ve seen from Oppo – OnePlus’ parent company – who used this same approach with the last two series of Find X Pro phone models. There is no Hasselblad branding, though, and, if that tells us anything, it’s that cameras aren’t as much of a priority in the 10T as they are in the 10 Pro. More on that later.
That logo isn’t the only thing missing from the 10T, either. OnePlus has ditched the alert slider switch that usually sits above the power/wake button on the right side. The reason OnePlus gave when we asked the reason for the change was that it takes up too much space internally, and it was needed for additional power and capabilities of the phone.
Another key difference between the 10 Pro and 10T is materials. Like the OnePlus Nord 2T, the 10T has a plastic frame sandwiched between the glass on the front and back. It’s a little bit of a downgrade from the 10 Pro’s aluminium frame, as is the Gorilla Glass 5 – dropping from Gorilla Glass Victus on the 10 Pro. We saw a similar approach with the OnePlus 8T when that launched.
With just over a week of use, we already saw a couple of minor scratches on the display, suggesting you might want to keep on the pre-applied screen protector.
Despite the downgrade in materials, it still feels solid enough. However, with no official IP rating for water and dust resistance, it won’t be as impervious to those threats as the 10 Pro, with its IP68 rating.
6.7-inch fullHD+ (2412 x 2080) AMOLED display
120Hz adaptive refresh (120/90/60 Hz)
Up to 1000Hz touch response rate
HDR10+; 10-bit colour; 950 nits peak brightness
As mentioned, there is a benefit to OnePlus’ choice of the screen on the front of the 10T: it’s completely flat. On the whole, it’s a great display that offers very vibrant colours, wide gamut support (up to 10-bit depth) and HDR10+.
Even though it’s only fullHD+ resolution – and not Quad HD – it still displays good sharpness. Even text and fine lines seem well detailed and smooth on this screen.
It isn’t the perfect display, though. It does lack a little brightness when compared to the 10 Pro and seems to have an overall red-ish/pink-ish tint, which means the whites don’t seem clean. Similarly, with an already quite saturated approach to colour, it means pinks and reds are even more boosted than they already would be without the pink-ish tint.
This tendency shows up in every colour calibration mode, too. So, when you compare it side-by-side with the 10 Pro, the older model just looks much better balanced in terms of colour and brightness. Similarly, the contrast seems to be cranked up a bit high, giving an unnatural, crushed look to some darker areas. These however are compromises you often see when looking at the more affordable flagship-powered devices. So it’s not exactly surprising to see it in the 10T.
Performance and battery
Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 processor
8GB/128GB or 16GB/256GB variants (12GB/256GB in India)
4800mAh battery – 150W fast charging (125W in the US)
Speed and fluidity is OnePlus’ raison d’être. It’s one thing that the company has always done well. Partly down to using powerful and fast internal components, and partly down to making its software seem zippy and responsive. And we’re glad to say, this is one area the OnePlus 10T absolutely nails.
With the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 inside, it doesn’t just make the phone a little more powerful than the 10 Pro, it’s also much more power efficient. Coupled with the impressively large cooling system inside, you get a phone that performs at a top level and doesn’t get overly hot or drain too much battery while doing it.
We’ve put the phone through its paces, going through long sessions on our favourite games (mostly Mario Kart Tour), and never felt it getting much warmer in our hand. The only time it did get warm was when charging, but, given the speed at which it charges, that’s to be expected.
For gamers who spend time with more demanding titles, there are a few other enhancements that should ensure you keep a competitive edge. None less so that 1000Hz touch sampling rate on the display, which means any touch or swipe gestures are picked up virtually instantly.
With fast-charging technology developing to unthinkable speeds over the past couple of years, we’re almost at the point where battery life almost doesn’t matter. Of course, you still need a phone that will get you through your work day, but the 4800mAh battery in the OnePlus 10T can do so without trouble.
As an aside to that, the charger that ships with the 10T features a USB-C connector (not USB-A) and can also charge Power Delivery-compatible devices like laptops and tablets up to 65W, making it the only charger you ever really need to carry around with you.
50MP primary camera (IMX766 sensor) – OIS and EIS
8MP ultrawide and 2MP macro
16MP front camera
4K up to 60fps
It’s safe to say the 10 Pro offered the strongest camera performance we’d seen from a OnePlus phone when it launched, but, with the company looking to slot this phone in between that and the Nord 2T, some compromises were obviously necessary. The 10T, then, rolls back to what is essentially the same camera loadout as on the mid-range Nord 2T.
That means you get a trio of lenses on the back, but only one of those is one we’d class as a strong performer. That’s the primary 50-megapixel camera that uses Sony’s IMX766 sensor. It’s the same sensor OnePlus has in the ultrawide camera of the 10 Pro and Oppo uses in both primary and ultrawide cameras on the Find X5 Pro.
It’s a decent lens in lower light conditions, as well. Although, when shooting indoors away from bright light, you might notice a little noise creeping into the shadows.
It’s a strong night mode performer, though, thanks to OnePlus’ updated Nightscape algorithms. It can draw in a lot of light and stabilise the shot, combining its AI processing with the OIS and EIS that keeps the lens steady. Again, contrast is a bit heavy, as is saturation, but the stabilisation offered means it delivers sharp, bright results pretty much every time. Software
OxygenOS 12.1 based on Android 12
Three major updates
Four years of security patches
As for software, OnePlus is continuing with the same approach here. It runs OxygenOS 12.1, based on Android 12. It’s not at all like the modern Pixel software, offering an experience more like older versions of Android.
This has its benefits, like the fact that the Quick Settings shade has more toggles in it. Plus, OnePlus makes it really easy to customise every aspect of its appearance through the ‘Personalisations’ screen.
The company also promises to deliver three major software updates, which include the Android 13-based OxygenOS 13 coming later this year.
You’ll also get four years of security patches. It’s not the longest promise we’ve heard, though, and one that may make it a less attractive option than Google’s Pixel range.
The OnePlus 10T is a great value phone for the money, offering high performance specifications, a great display and at least one good camera for a very reasonable price. You do have to compromise a little on some areas, but it’s still represents a very competitive phone for the cost.
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