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OnePlus 10 Pro review: Nearly there

Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
799
inc VAT

The OnePlus 10 Pro is a very good smartphone but it has one critical flaw

Pros 
Nicely designed
Hasselblad cameras are great
Cons 
No IP rating
No microSD card expansion
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The story of the OnePlus 10 Pro is a curious one. Despite only just being made available to customers in the UK and Europe, it’s been out for some time now in the far east. And, unlike the phones it’s taking on – the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S22 and the Apple iPhone 13 – the OnePlus 10 Pro is launching all on its own. There is no OnePlus 10, OnePlus 10 mini or OnePlus 10 Ultra. Yet.

READ NEXT: Our guide to the best smartphones money can buy

In some ways, that’s in keeping with the OnePlus ethos. Over the years, the firm, to varying degrees of success, has attempted to cast itself as a smartphone manufacturer that gives its customers more for less, so putting all its efforts into one model at a time makes it easier to ensure it keeps doing that.

Looking at the OnePlus 10 Pro’s list of specifications and its price of £799 and you might think that OnePlus had wandered a little awry. However, look closer and you’ll see that despite the high price, you’re still getting plenty of stuff for your money.

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OnePlus 10 Pro review: What you need to know

From the word go, it’s clear this is a premium handset. The OnePlus 10 Pro has a large 6.7in 120Hz QHD+ OLED screen, the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 processor, and either 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage or 12GB of RAM and 256GB of storage.

Available in black or green, the OnePlus 10 Pro also continues the firm’s partnership with legendary professional camera manufacturer, Hasselblad, with a three-lens camera plate at the rear and a 32MP camera up front. Elsewhere, there’s a big 5,000mAh battery, 80W SuperVOOC fast charging that will charge the phone from empty to 100% in around 32 minutes, plus 50W wireless charging.

The one big thing missing from the OnePlus 10 Pro’s spec sheet is any kind of official dust or water resistance. The firm says the phone is splash resistant as it did with the OnePlus 9 Pro but it stops short of handing it a full-blown IP rating.

OnePlus 10 Pro review: Price and competition

At £799 for the model with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage and £899 for the 12GB/256GB variant, the OnePlus 10 Pro finds itself firmly in “affordable flagship” territory.

In this price range we have the Google Pixel 6 Pro, which starts at £849 and comes with a 6.7in display, an IP68 dust- and water-resistance rating, three cameras and Google’s Tensor chip. Next up is the Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus, which is a fair bit more expensive at around £999, comes with a 6.6in display, an IP68 rating, three cameras and Samsung’s own Exynos 2200 processor.

The smaller Samsung Galaxy S22, meanwhile, is closer in price to the OnePlus 10 Pro but only has a 6.1in display, while the £729 iPhone 13 is both smaller and lacks the OnePlus’ third telephoto camera.

All in all, while an even lower price would be nice, the OnePlus 10 Pro does offer a rather nice balance of features and performance for the price – and while the Samsung S22 takes the win for overall camera quality, the OnePlus 10 Pro isn’t far behind.

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OnePlus 10 Pro review: Design

The OnePlus 10 Pro is a rather large and hefty thing, as you might expect from a phone with a screen this big. It’s good to see OnePlus has kept things as slim as possible – it measures 9.3mm thick at the body and the bezels are as narrow as can be all the way around the screen – but there’s not much more it can do  beyond that to keep things down to size.

From the front, the OnePlus 10 Pro looks much like any number of other smartphones. It has its selfie camera punched out of a hole in the top-left corner and the edges on either side of the Gorilla Glass Victus-topped screen curve subtly to meet a colour-matched aluminium frame.

It’s the rear panel where all the action happens, so to speak, with a couple of eye-catching features. The first is a large square, chromed camera housing, which some colleagues have pointed out looks a bit like an induction hob – its four cooking rings housing the three cameras and multi-LED flash. 

I actually think it looks rather stylish, especially compared with the big ugly strip of black glass that stretches across the width of the Pixel 6 Pro, but your mileage may vary.

Up next is a rather fine matte-finish glass back, which feels so smooth under the finger that it would be a shame to slap a case on it. If you don’t, however, it should hopefully be pretty resistant to scratches and scuffs; OnePlus hasn’t used Gorilla Glass Victus here like it has on the front of the phone but Gorilla Glass 5 is still pretty good.

Finally, scattered around the edges are the usual array of sockets, speaker grilles, buttons and switches. The volume rocker is on the left, the power button is on the right, and above it sits OnePlus’ trademark three-position do-not-disturb switch. This allows you to quickly toggle between Silent, Vibrate and Ring audio modes and is a feature I wish more phone manufacturers would adopt. Finally, the USB-C port, SIM card tray and speaker grille are all found on the bottom edge. Alas, the phone has no microSD expansion support, although that’s not altogether surprising for a flagship in this day and age.

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OnePlus 10 Pro review: Display

Flip the phone over to the front and we have a 6.7in LTPO2 OLED display with a resolution of 3216 X 1440, a variable refresh rate of up to 120Hz and peak brightness of 1,300cd/m2. Those are pretty standard specifications for a premium smartphone these days, but OnePlus has added a couple of interesting features. 

The screen is dual colour calibrated, so it should remain accurate at different brightness levels (100cd/m2 and 500cd/m2). AI adaptive auto-brightness is a new imaging algorithm that supposedly learns the brightness levels you prefer through the adjustments you make and adapts its settings accordingly.

Either way, it’s a fairly decent screen. At full brightness with auto brightness turned off, I measured 469cd/m2, the contrast ratio, as with all OLED screens, is effectively perfect and colour accuracy is pretty good, too. In total, you have four colour modes to select from: the default Vivid mode, plus Natural and there are two further options under the Pro mode – Cinematic (P3) and Brilliant.

The Natural mode is the best mode for browsing the web and general use as it adheres to the sRGB colour standard, while the P3 Cinematic mode is best for watching TV shows and movies. In all, it’s a highly competent display.

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OnePlus 10 Pro review: Cameras

Camera quality is impressive, too, and it appears that the partnership with Hasselblad is finally bearing fruit. As you’d expect from a flagship, there are three main lenses at the rear of the phone: one 48MP (f/1.8) main camera, one 50MP (f/2.2) ultra wide camera and an 8MP (f/2.4) 3.3x telephoto.

The selfie camera on the front is a 32MP (f/2.2) affair and video can be recorded at up to 8K resolution at 24fps, or in 4K at up to 120fps. You can even record video with a flat LOG profile for more effective colour grading in post production. 

Interestingly, the main and telephoto camera modules are both the same as found in the OnePlus 9 Pro; the only new hardware here is the ultra wide camera, which is capable of capturing both 110-degree and 150-degree fisheye images. Another new feature is the ability to take still images in 10-bit colour and RAW+ capture, a feature of the Hasselblad Pro mode that captures three RAW frames in quick succession and combines them to create an image with even greater dynamic range than in a regular RAW image.

In general, these cameras produce top-notch images but my conclusions are largely the same as they were for last year’s OnePlus 9 Pro: they’re great but there’s still room for improvement.

Once again, colour balance is excellent and remains pretty consistent across all three of the cameras, with each module capturing plenty of detail. In my testing so far I have the OnePlus 10 Pro ahead of the iPhone 13 Pro I’ve been comparing it with, in good lighting conditions, at least.

There isn’t much of a difference in the main camera shots, which look pretty close for colour, noise and detail, but images produced by the OnePlus 10 Pro’s telephoto and ultra wide cameras are noticeably superior. Not only is the colour balance slightly less murky but photographs look cleaner and crisper in comparison.



In the meantime, OnePlus’ night mode shots have also improved with colour balance, in particular, being a big step up. Overall, though, there’s still too much softness for my liking. The iPhone 13 Pro’s night photos look much sharper.


The same goes for portrait imagery: while the OnePlus 10 Pro does a reasonable job isolating the subject from the background, it smoothes out skin textures far too much.

Other areas for improvement include the 8K video capture mode, which produces detail-packed footage but is afflicted by an irritating flickering. The digital zoom isn’t a patch on Samsung’s impressive Space Zoom tech, either – zoom in too much on a scene and photos take on a rather artificial look, as if you’d put them through an oil painting filter in Photoshop.

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OnePlus 10 Pro review: Performance and battery life

If the camera quality is mixed is a mixed bag, the same can’t be said for performance and battery life. With the octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 at the helm plus 8GB of RAM, my review sample flew through the benchmarks. It’s a hair slower than the S22 Plus but still pretty close, and it’s a fair degree ahead of the Google Pixel 6 Pro with its Google Tensor silicon. It can’t compete with the iPhone 13 and its A15 Bionic but, then, no Android phone can at the current time.

Battery life is even more impressive, and while it isn’t as good as the absolute best we’ve seen, but its result of 21hrs 45mins in our video rundown test not only beats last year’s OnePlus 9 Pro but is better than all of its main rivals as well. That SuperVOOC 80W fast charging is pretty decent, too, and all the better for having the adapter and cable included in the box.

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OnePlus 10 Pro review: Verdict

All of which leads us to the verdict, which is another positive one for OnePlus. Not only does the OnePlus 10 Pro squeeze in most of the features you’d expect of a flagship phone at a more reasonable price than rivals, but it also does so while not compromising too much in any particular area.

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It’s a nicely designed phone, it takes excellent pictures, it has great battery life and performance is superb.

The only problem – and it’s a fairly major one – is that it lacks an IP rating for dust and water resistance. At this price and on a flagship phone, it’s an absolute must-have and the only thing holding the OnePlus 10 Pro back from a wholehearted recommendation.

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