back to article OnePlus 2: Disappointing Second Album syndrome strikes again

Nothing excites young male phone nerds like a phone you can’t buy. It excites them more than the (remote) prospect of sex. Neither is obtainable, but how they want it so. They’ll queue in the sun for hours just to look at something they won’t be able to buy for months. OnePlus, an offshoot of Chinese giant OPO, tried this …

  1. gregkelly1985
    WTF?

    Bizarre

    Disclosure: I had a OnePlus One (although sold it for an LG G3), and now have a Two.

    I find this review quite bizarre. You pan it for having the new USB type C, no quickcharge and no NFC (which incidentally I used a handful of times when I got the One but then quickly forgot about), but give very little praise for the price or hardware - like dual sim and fingerprint sensor (which for me has worked flawlessly and just as quick & reliable as my wife's iPhone 6).

    You say dual SIM isn't a USP, yet whilst I agree it's not exactly unique to all phones, it is in flagship devices.

    In all honesty, yes this phone suited my needs specifically of having two sim cards (one for work and one for personal) while having the all important fingerprint sensor to bypass the ridiculous passwords that the works email software insisted on. I could literally not find another flagship device that had these two features.

    Finally, people need to get over the invite system. Yes it's a pain in the ass, but I didn't register even close to first (as I didn't even realise it had been released for about a fortnight!) and I got an invite fairly soon after, placed my order, and the phone was in my hand within 10 working days - not bad!

    In all I'm disappointed to read a review that so heavily focuses on the negatives and hides the positives, but I suppose that's just my opinion.

    1. Andrew Orlowski (Written by Reg staff)

      Re: Bizarre

      https://www.xkcd.com/386/

      1. gregkelly1985
        Coat

        Re: Bizarre

        Haha touché but I still thought it was a strange review, with weighting lent to certain aspects rather than a full overview of the phone.

        Each to their own though and I'm certainly not going to lose sleep over it.

        1. Andrew Orlowski (Written by Reg staff)

          Re: Re: Bizarre

          It's a Reg tradition to dwell on the niggles because, while most of the niggles won't bother most people, some might be a deal-breaker for a few.

          (People used to say we were being unfair for manufacturers continuing to use resistive touchscreens, for example. "They're just as good as capacitive touchscreens, just press harder!" )

          The bundle here is so immature and incomplete it would be weird not to mention it.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Bizarre

            I don't get the USB-C hate. If you hate every device that comes with USB-C then we won't get USB-C for a very long time. The ability to plug it in all ways round is worth a short term niggle of not having so many cables hanging around for it for me.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Bizarre

      @gregkelly1985; "Finally, people need to get over the invite system."

      Oddly, no. People don't "need" to "get over" anything just because you tell them they should.

      If they're making too big a deal of something that isn't as big a PITA as it might appear, that's OnePlus's own fault for manufacturing a pretend barrier designed to rope in the plebs with an air of fake exclusivity. At best, it's still a stupid hoop that has to be jumped through- if it's hurting sales, they're free to stop the charade.

    3. VinceH

      Re: Bizarre

      "Finally, people need to get over the invite system."

      Personally, no, I don't. If I have to be 'invited' to be able to buy something, then I don't want it. There's nothing to get over because it's a personal selection process, just like if I was to say "if it only comes in red, then I don't want it."

      Also, if I received an "invite" that would be a second reason not to buy it, because I never accept invites, only invitations. True fact: If someone hands me an envelope and says "Here's your invite to <whatever>" I bin it and tell them I don't accept invites, only invitations.

      It might be pedantic, and you might say it's pointless - but it's my choice. Mine, damn it, and if anybody tells me I need to 'get over it', they're invited to engage in coitus and then cease living.

    4. TeeCee Gold badge
      Facepalm

      Re: Bizarre

      Yeah, NFC is the chocolate teapot of smartphone features.

      Can't see a use for it, especially as "pay by phone" has "lowest of the low hanging fruit" writ large upon it.

    5. e^iπ+1=0

      Re: Bizarre

      Something I'd like to see in the reviews (for in this instance android phones) here as a matter of course is the availability of 3rd party ROMs.

      Obviously I can go and look elsewhere; however I happen to be here at the moment.

      With regards to this particular phone, it is mentioned as a downside in the review that it does not come with CyanogenMod. Useful information. Does it support CyanogenMod would also be useful information.

      We often get such info here for Chrome boxes, laptops (it worked with Ubuntu, for example). I'd like to see similar for Android devices.

  2. jzl

    Meh

    I think I'll stick with my iPhone. Less faff.

  3. Madeye

    Speaking as someone who just traded in their Samsung Galaxy S2 in for a grey-import Oneplus 2 I have to say I am absolutely delighted with it. However in view of the age of my old phone you could probably have handed me 2 coconuts tied together and I would have clapped excitedly. It did improve immeasurably once I'd flashed the latest OxygenOS over the grey-import bloaty crapware it came installed with. Despite Andrews early assertions, I can't say I've noticed that having 5.5 inches of bamboo in my pocket has made any difference either way to the ease of getting laid.

    1. Valeyard
      Coat

      5.5 inches of wood in my pocket does me fine actually

    2. Salamander

      The price difference between the oneplus two and the iphone 6s is about £300. Enough perhaps for a bit of high class slap and tickle in London?

  4. Valeyard

    shame

    I love my oneplus one, and although i plan to keep it for many years, if it ever died I don't think I'd go for a OP2

    i'd want a cm one i think

  5. cmannett85

    I love my OnePlus One, primarily because of CM, so the Two doesn't interest me too much. Having said that, Ill probably buy the Two just for the bamboo backing...

  6. Psy-Q

    Cyanogen OS, not CyanogenMod

    The Wileyfox runs Cyanogen OS, not CyanogenMod. Cyanogen OS is the one that gets the Microsoft apps and deeply integrated Cortana at some point. Also, probably you won't have root on those phones. So definitely not as interesting as having a real CM.

    1. juul

      Re: Cyanogen OS, not CyanogenMod

      I have the oneplus one, and have the true cm experience (cyanogenmod not cyanogen os).

      I also have the oneplus two, oxygenOS did not suite me, to buggy like the review said.

      Have flashed it with cm, which is not officially supported, but better the oxygenOS, but still not the true cm feel.

      The two should have had the cm os, that would have been so much better. I am OK with my two, I could have missed out on the two, but I am not buying the three, if it does not come with cm.

  7. Dr. Mouse

    I agree that there are issues, but I'm happy with mine.

    I don't find the battery life bad (I get about a day and a half to two days on a charge). I would have liked fast charge but it's not a deal breaker for me (I've never had it). And, right now, NFC has little use in the UK. I have only every used it to mess around (reading my passport and using a few stick-on tags).

    However, once Android Pay launches in the UK, I may regret it. I hadn't heard about the lack of NFC before I bought it, and it may have affected my decision. I don't quite understand why they omitted it just as the tech is about to become useful...

  8. rctempire

    Interesting read.

    A lot of negatives and hardly any positives apart from the OnePlus One.

    They have released update 2.1.0 two days ago which resolves certain issues.

    Software updates are a plenty so far (3 since launch) so iron out the community bugs.

    How the original started out really, just its more prevalent as it was a higher profile release.

  9. terd
    Alert

    OS

    Just got Oxygen 2.1 on my OPT yesterday - much improved camera, with new manual mode, and the OS seems more stable too

  10. Kevin McMurtrie Silver badge

    LTE

    The biggest problem with cheap high-spec phones is the lack of LTE bands. Most of them have two sets of two or three diverse bands to choose from, with hopefully one set having one band that is used in your region. The OnePlus Two is better than average in this respect. I count 8 LTE bands in the North American model.

  11. Arthur the cat Silver badge

    My take

    I've had one for 10 days and have very few complaints, added to which it's got generally better specs than my old HTC One M8 at 55% of the cost. Given that I always buy off contract, that's a big factor.

    NFC: had it on the HTC, never used it. Seems to me NFC is pretty useless in the UK.

    USB-C: different, just like switching from mini-USB to micro- was, and I've no idea why the article says "And the supplied USB-C cable doesn’t fit any regular USB plugs or ports, although it should" because I have zero problems with it. Also it avoids the usual Lovecraftian geometry that requires you to have at least three attempts to plug USB in.

    Oxygen OS: not really stock Android. It sits over SELinux, has user accounts, and can control app permissions so you don't have to live with the over-generous rights grab most apps seem to have these days. It's remarkably quick to encrypt the phone as well - it warns you that it will take up to four hours, then does it in about 7 minutes.

    Can't persuade the damn launcher to give me a 6x4 grid though, and I agree the lack of customisability of the quick settings is a PITA, although you can reorder them (unlike the article claim).

    Fast charge: no big deal for me. The battery lasts me two days normally, one while travelling and using maps a lot (plus being in the wilds so the phone shouts harder to out of range base stations), and I charge overnight.

    Fingerprint scanner: works fine for me unless I have wet hands (maybe Andrew O moisturises a lot?). Setting it up automatically let me use it for unlock (as well as the PIN I'd set up), no problem.

    Camera: if I want seriously good photos I get out the DLSR. Good enough for using as an aide memoire, and the only reason I use selfie mode is to act as a mirror so I can see the backs of monitors when plugging cables in.

    I'm far from a typical phone user, but for my use it's great. The only major problem is the ridiculous "invite" system - I'm somewhere around number 500,000 and only have my phone because I know a OnePlus 1 owner who got an early invite and took it intending to resell.

  12. Keef

    OTG issues

    I'm reasonably happy with my OnePlus 2, having moved from a Nexus 5 I do miss QI charging but NFC turned out to be a short lived novelty.

    NFC may be more important in the UK a a year or two and I'm happy to change phones if that turns out to be the case.

    My only concern so far is that I used to be able to use a Plantronics USB headset and an R820T2 dongle with USB OTG cables on the 5. Neither device is detected on the 2.

    I've bought a couple of cheap USB C OTG cables and USB-C to micro USB adapters to use with my existing OTG cables so they may be the problem. OnePlus do sell a C to micro adapter but it is out of stock on the UK store so I've not been able to try that yet.

    Otherwise I'm happy enough with the phone, especially considering the price.

    I've also bought a USB C to micro USB adapter and that The official USB C to micro

  13. Jon Green

    Another glaring problem

    ...is that, for the Two, OnePlus has produced regional versions. I was looking forward to the dual SIM facility, meaning I could roam in the States on a local SIM and keep my UK SIM in too.

    Two SIMs, one phone: what's not to like? Well, the fact that the European version doesn't have any US LTE bands, for instance. The One did. So, yes, I could roam in the States, but I get 3G at best on a European Two. And that ain't good enough for me, because I _need_ the speed: hotel networking there often is wired-only (I mean, seriously? Twenty-FIRST century, anyone?), and when it's actually wi-fi, it's either larcenously expensive - $15-20/day is typical) - slow, or, quite often, both.

    The lack of NFC's a problem for me too, particularly as I was writing an Android NFC app for one client!

    So, the Two's a zero for me. Sorry.

  14. John Tserkezis

    "It excites them more than the (remote) prospect of sex."

    I don't know which nerds you asked, but all the ones I know only have sex on their minds...

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    No NFC makes it obsolete?

    More like it is missing some checkbox item that some people like to think is a requirement, but like SD card slot and removable battery, the market says is not.

    Unless you feel a pressing need to buy stuff with your phone, NFC is pretty much useless except for geeks who like to find solutions in need of a problem, where the solution is "let me stick NFC tags all over my life"

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