Review: Oppo R9s Plus phone
0.0Overall Score

As we mentioned a couple of weeks ago, Oppo has released a version of its premium phone upsized to a six inch screen. Yet despite a host of other premium features, the Oppo R9s Plus manages to come in at just $698.

Features

That’s a mighty big screen, but it’s nicely sharp thanks to the full HD 1080 by 1920 pixel resolution. The phone, by my measurements, is 80.8mm wide and 163.7mm tall and 7.3mm thick. That’s one very flat slab. The screen came to 74.3mm wide by 132.3mm tall, which works out to a screen size slightly over 5.97 inches – close enough to six. The screen occupies 74.3% of the face of the phone (ignoring the phone’s curved corners). There is a camera bump but it would seem to be little over half a millimetre thick.

I loved the screen size. My default screen is 5.2 inches, so the difference is enormous. It’s easy to read and easy to select things on the screen. It is covered in Corning Gorilla Glass 5.

There are two finishes available: one with a soft gold hue to the alloy case, the other finished in matt black (that was the review unit).

The phone supports LTE with a wide range of operational bands, and it includes 802.11ac dual band WiFi. You can load in two SIMs for convenient travel or replace one of them with a microSD card of up to 256GB capacity.

The CPU-Z app confirmed that the phone is running an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 652 processor. Four of the Cortex-A72 cores run at up to 1.96GHz, while the four A53 cores will go to 1.4GHz. The app also says that working memory is 5880MB (which is routinely rounded to 6GB, which is way more than the usual 3GB or 4GB) and has 52.32GB of storage, with slightly over 49GB remaining available after I’d installed my standard minimal set of apps to make the phone usable for me. (The other dozen-ish GB to get the phone up to 64? Locked away for system use.)

The 16 megapixel rear camera employs a Sony IMX398 Exmor RS sensor with dual pixel Phase Detection Auto Focus and a maximum f/1.7 aperture. It also features optical image stabilisation. According to the provided specifications, the maximum video recording quality is full HD at 30 frames per second. In reality you get a choice of 720p, 1080p and 4K. All video modes use the Blu-ray-like MPEG4 AVC (H.264) codec and AAC audio.

The phone runs Android 6.0.1 with Oppo’s Color OS 3.0 overlay. There is a headphone socket. There is Bluetooth and whatnot. But there is no NFC (near field communications) function.

As is Oppo’s practice, the phone comes with a light, transparent plastic or silicon case.

In Use

As I think I may have hinted at, I loved the big screen. As deep black as a nice AMOLED one? No, of course not. Black and colourful enough? Absolutely. Cheap looking? No.

In fact, the whole phone looks stylish. Particularly once you replace the bland wallpaper with something more to your taste. The phone also comes with a lock screen slideshow which tends to show pictures of discomfortingly pretty people in addition to pretty objects. All is easily changed through the setup menu.

The Color OS 3.0 variation of Marshmallow has a couple of pointless differences in operation (pinch to bring up the widget editor rather than touch and hold), and at least one change that was simply irritating. Specifically, while you swipe down from the top in the usual way to show the notifications and quick settings icons, these are on two separate pages with the shortcuts showing first. They occupy most of the page and you have to swipe sideways to get to notifications. Nor was there any apparent way to edit them. I like to have the hotspot function there. But it isn’t and can’t be put there, requiring access via the setup menu whenever I want to use that function.

Oh, also, change the default hotspot password. It’s rather too easily guessable.