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OPPO A52 and A72 2020 – shut up and take my money (new $299 value champ)
4.8Overall Score
Name: OPPO A52 2020
Price (RRP): $299
Manufacturer: OPPO

Just when you thought it was safe to go in the water again along comes this weeks value king – the OPPO A52 and A72 2020. it is a $299 smartphone with a Qualcomm SD655 SoC, 4/64GB, 6.5″ screen, Wi-Fi AC, NFC and 5000mAh QC 3.0 battery. And it is very good.

Now, with the greatest apologies to Motorola and its excellent SD655 based g8 at $329 (reviewed earlier this week here), the OPPO A52 2020 is $30 cheaper and adds things that are unheard of at $299. Damn – the bang-for-buck index gets lowered again.

So, let’s look at what is under the bonnet and how the OPPO A52 2020 has just topped the Motorola g8, Xiaomi Mi A3, Vivo Y17 and realme C3. BTW – all these phones are excellent, and you would be happy with any of them. And of course, all are built to meet a price, so you have to expect some compromises. The trick is to get the one with the least!

OPPO has taken lessons from rabbits

The A52 and A72 share the same internals, screen, physical size and specifications. The A52 is for wider retail sale. The OPPO A72 exclusive to Optus.

It has a primary 48MP camera binning to 12MP – instead of the 12MP in the A52 and storage is bumped to 128GB.

Both are $299 but as the A72 (website here) is an Optus exclusive locked to its network on a pre-paid there is some degree of cross-subsidisation. Optus unlock fees depend on the time you use it on the network. If less than 6 months it is $80 and over that $25.

OPPO A52 2020 Model CPH 2069AU

  • Australian Website here
  • Price: $299 from JB Hi-Fi, The Good Guys and Woolworths Mobile (on a plan from $34 per month)
  • Colours: Twilight Black and Stream White
  • Warranty: 24-months with local service and support from OPPO
  • Country of origin: China

We are rating this as a $299 smartphone and use the words Fail, Pass or Exceed against the relevant paradigms for a phone at that value.

A word about OPPO

OPPO (Est 2001) is a privately owned Chinese consumer electronics and mobile communications company headquartered in Dongguan, Guangdong.

It is a subsidiary of BBK Electronics Corporation (Est 1995) along with OnePlus, Vivo, and Realme (and other brands including VSun, XTC, and IMOO). Its executives and long-term staff own many of the shares. BBK is currently the second-largest smartphone maker in the world (Source CounterPoint – see below BBK has 17+% on February 2020).

BBK founder and chairman, Duan Yongping (born 1961), emigrated to Palo Alto, California in 2002 to ensure his freedom and family’s safety. He is billionaire, philanthropist, and a ‘big-time’ investor in, and admirer of, Apple.

BBK is not a state-owned enterprise, and there are no known links with the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). There have never been accusations that OPPO spies for the CCP.

OPPO freely admits it is subject to the laws of any country it works in. In Australia, all certified C-Tick models have the IMEI registered to the Australian carrier network that keeps metadata under Federal Laws. OPPO devices have the full suite of Google Android and Mobile services so that data resides with Google. There is no requirement to set up an OPPO ID or cloud account.

GadgetGuy has covered OPPO since it came to Australia in 2014. We have been consistently impressed with its innovation and handset quality. We have confidence in its integrity.

Screen – EXCEED

It is a 6.5″ Neo-Display, 2400×1800, 405ppi, 20:9, LTPS with a 90.5% STBR with Eye Protection Certification by TÜV Rheinland. It has Gorilla Glass 3 screen protection and a pre-fitted screen protector.

Brightness is 480 nits (typical) and contrast 1500:1 (typical). Our tests show the peak brightness is higher, and it has a slider control to adjust to warmer or cooler white. It is fine for outdoor readability. Screen AI will learn your habits and adjust to ambient light.