Once hotly contested, the premium phone market has lost some of its excitement and buzz in recent years. But luckily, there are still phones like the OnePlus 10T 5G in the market, which give Indian consumers a solid option under Rs 50,000.
By India Today Tech: If you look at the smartphone market, one of the key segments is the premium segment. And no, we are not talking about the ultra-premium segment, where phone prices are now touching Rs 1 lakh. We’re talking about the price of Rs 50,000, or slightly below, which is the sweet spot for most buyers looking to get a premium phone. However, the choices in this segment are limited. But one stands out: the OnePlus 10T 5G. Launched a few months ago, the 10T 5G is a quintessential OnePlus phone: solid in hardware, pretty nifty in design and software, and as a combination good value for money.
The reason? Think of it like this: before the OnePlus 10T, OnePlus’ flagship for the first half of 2022 was the 10 Pro. In fact, it still is a lot. But after the launch of the OnePlus 10T, it feels – leaving aside a few details – that the company has actually made a flagship, which is as good as the OnePlus 10 Pro but at a much lower price.
We at India Today Tech often get this question: what is the best phone to buy under Rs 50,000? The answer, dear readers, for now is OnePlus 10T 5G.
Why OnePlus 10T 5G is worth buying
It’s not that the OnePlus 10T 5G is perfect. Still, look closely at the phone and you’ll realize that it ticks all the right boxes that a premium phone should tick. In fact, in many ways this phone punches above its weight and price, for example compared to a phone like the much more expensive OnePlus 10 Pro which the 10T 5G shares the base hardware with.
It’s this core hardware that makes us recommend the OnePlus 10T 5G. The phone is loaded to the ears with everything the latest in the Android world. It is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 which is the latest and most powerful chipset you can get in an Android phone right now. This powerful hardware, together with 8GB of RAM (the variant with 16GB of RAM costs Rs 50,999 and with 12GB of RAM the price is Rs 49,999), makes the OnePlus 10T 5G an incredibly fast phone. This is something we found when reviewing the phone when we saw that the phone handles pretty well almost everything one is likely to do on it: it runs games well, web browsing is fluid, timelines scroll smoothly and files – such as PDF files – open in a jiffy.
This latest base hardware also means that the OnePlus 10T 5G, unlike some other phones that use older hardware, is likely to be more upgradable. We have seen that OnePlus tends to release software updates more regularly for its latest phones, and given that OnePlus 10T 5G is the latest, users can also expect better software support.
Now, it’s not just the basic hardware. The rest of the components are also pretty close to what you get in phones that cost Rs 70,000 or something.
We particularly like the multimedia performance of the OnePlus 10T 5G. The screen, measuring 6.7 inches, is large and bright enough to use in the blinding Delhi sun. It has all the stickers. AMOLED, HDR 10+, 120HZ, Display P3 — it’s all there. And it shows when using the phone to watch videos or browse photos. But the real reason we love watching crisp 4K video on the 10T 5G is its stereo speaker array. These are extremely loud and are some of the best we’ve heard in a high-end phone.
The camera is quite good and charging is amazingly fast
As we said, there is no perfect phone under Rs 50,000. But as a package, the OnePlus 10T 5G comes pretty close. And in this package, we get a set of capable cameras, which may not match the “almighty Pixel”, but which are as good, if not better, than what other phones offer in this price bracket.
Now, unlike the 10 Pro, the Hasselblad branding isn’t there. But we found that the 10T 5G’s 50-megapixel main camera takes great photos and videos, just like the OnePlus 10 Pro. It lacks a telephoto lens, but an ultra-wide lens has been bundled with a macro camera that clicks 2MP photos. Of the two, we like the ultra-wide camera more.
Then there are unique and useful features that one only gets in a OnePlus phone. Oxygen OS 13, now powered by Android 13, is the latest and useful. But the highlight among the unique features is super-fast charging. The OnePlus 10T 5G is one of the few phones in India that supports 150W charging. That might sound like a stretch, but it’s not. If you have a super super busy lifestyle, you’ll find that 150W fast charging is essential. It’s a feature that really makes life easier. And because OnePlus says – and we hope the company is right – that it implemented this fast charging with certain technological protections in place for the battery, it’s also safe to assume that it won’t have an impact. on the lifespan and longevity of the phone.
You can read more about the battery technology of the OnePlus 10T 5G here.
Let’s say it again: there is no perfect phone. Not less than Rs 50,000. Not in any price. Even a phone that costs Rs 1.5 lakh – looking at your iPhone 14 Pro Max – has a few things that could have been better. In OnePlus 10T 5G, we miss the alert slider that OnePlus’ high-end phones had before. However, people who have never used a phone with such a slider will not be bothered by its absence. And second, the phone uses a plastic frame. The build quality is superb, with Gorilla Glass on the front and back, but we miss the feel of metal while holding the phone.
Still, what you get with the OnePlus 10T 5G is far more useful and worth more than what you don’t get. And therein lies the value of the phone. Under Rs 50,000, the OnePlus 10T 5G offers Indian users a combination of superb core hardware, arguably the world’s fastest Android, a top-notch display, capable cameras, quite a sleek design, latest software and some brand value under OnePlus tag. There is no other phone that offers so much in this price range. Not for the moment.