Oppo F3 Plus is the newest smartphone in town to bank on its two front facing cameras and a truly big screen to take on its rivals and impress buyers. Priced at Rs 30,990, it will be available in both offline and online stores, which means it will be more readily available than phones that follow the online-only sales model.
Design: Big and premium finish
There has been a surge in the popularity of metal-clad phones recently. The F3 Plus is no different. Its back panel is made of metal too and looks quite understated. The phone is a vertically quite tall (163mm) to fit into one hand, also because of the big 6-inch display. It weighs just 185g, which is commendable, because it’s easy for phones with that big a screen to cross the 200g mark. The phone’s lower spine has the speaker, a micro USB slot and the 3.5mm audio jack as well. The finger print sensor is integrated with the home button on the front panel, and the response is accurate and fast.
Display: Big screen looks good
The 6-inch display packs a resolution of 1,920x1,080p and has a layer of Gorilla Glass 5, which not only provides protection against scratches but also against accidental drops from a height of 1.6 metres. This is a good looking display and handles colour reproduction very well. However, we feel that a higher 2,560x1,440p resolution would have looked a lot better on this screen size, as that would have improved crispness. Visibility from wide angles are good, auto brightness setting adjusts to ambient light very quickly. The big screen is ideal for users who read a lot or those who have to type long documents.
Oppo has added an eye-protection mode in display settings that allow users to change the colour of the screen to reduce stress on eyes, particularly in low light conditions.
Software: Funky custom UI
The phone runs Android 6.0 with Oppo’s custom UI over it. There is no doubt that the Colour OS looks funky, is clearly inspired by Apple iOS offers and offers lots of cool customisation options that most smartphone users like. But the absence of latest Android means, users will miss out on features such as side-by-side multi-tasking, improved notifications panel and Google’s improved battery management tool Doze 2.0.
Performance: Works smoothly but no powerhouse
Powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 652 octa-core processor with 4GB RAM, the F3 Plus is able to handle most common apps with absolute ease. Even with multiple apps running and games such as FIFA 16 and Asphalt Xtreme, we didn’t notice any sluggishness or overheating on the back panel. Though it is a capable processor, it is no match to the likes of Snapdragon 821 quad-core processor or even the Snapdragon 820 chip that powers a number of rivals selling at lower price points, with the latter two offering even more powerful multi-tasking and gaming capabilities, which also adds future-proofing.
The phone offers 64 GB storage and can take in microSD cards up to 256GB. However, the card slot is integrated with one of the nano SIM slots so one can use only one SIM if they want to add a microSD card to the phone.
Battery: Big and charges fast
The phone runs on a 4,000mAh battery that can easily deliver about a day and a half on modest use. The phone uses its own Quick charge technology called VOOC, which can charge a completely discharged battery to as much as 60 percent in just 30 minutes.
Camera: Impresses in all conditions
The prime attraction is the dual camera set up on the front. There is a 16- megapixel camera that works in tandem with the 8-megapixel camera, offering options like increasing or decreasing depth of field in selfies. The 8-megapixel camera also supports 120 degree wide angle view so one can accommodate more people into a shot comfortably. Both cameras are quite good in terms of detailing and colour accuracy.
The primary camera has a 16-megapixel Sony IMX 398 sensor with an aperture of F/1.7, which should theoretically mean fairly detailed low light photos. The picture quality is quite impressive. Colours look accurate and the amount of detail it can muster even in low light is quite impressive. It also offers some interesting camera modes such as ultra HD photos, GIF, double exposure, time lapse, and can record videos in 4K. It is one of the most capable camera phones we have seen in mid range segment after OnePlus 3 and OnePlus 3T.
Oppo has got most things right with the F3 Plus. The dual camera, big screen, premium finish and steady performance are some of the elements that you can’t get on a single phone easily. If you are a camera buff, and want a 6-inch screen phone, this is worth considering. There will be the inevitable comparisons with the OnePlus 3T (Rs 29,999 onwards), which has a more conventional 5.5-inch display, has a more powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 processor, 6GB RAM and a very capable camera as well. However, the real cherry on the OnePlus’s cake would be the fact that it is one of the very few phones apart from the Google Pixel phones to run the newer latest Android 7.1.1 version and all the optimizations that come with it.