OnePlus 12 First Impressions: It’s All About Refinements


From introducing a flagship killer to launching flagship(s), from the quest of Never Settle to finally settling in (in terms of cementing its space in the tech industry), and from just one-phone-a-year cadence to having a range of offerings throughout the year – OnePlus has come a long way in the decade since its inception in 2014. Now, in a bid to take that to the next level, OnePlus is kickstarting the year with the launch of the much-anticipated OnePlus 12 series.

The fact that the OnePlus 12 India launch event is also witnessing the global debut of the OnePlus 12R is a testament to how important the subcontinent is for the brand. But in this article, we are focusing on the OnePlus 12. If you want a TLDR; version, then here it is – the OnePlus 12 may not bring big changes, but it comes with a slew of small tweaks that enhance the user experience, making it a worthy contender for the title of Android flagship of 2024. While we will have more to say on that in our in-depth review, our initial impressions will give you a glimpse of why we think so.


There was a time when cameras used to be a sore point for OnePlus devices. But now, the brand has turned that on its head, largely in part because of its partnership with Hasselblad. The OnePlus 12 carries that forward by offering a triple-camera setup led by a 50-megapixel Sony LYT-808 sensor with f/1.6 aperture and OIS. It is complemented by an optically-stabilised 64-megapixel telephoto lens with 3x optical zoom and a 48-megapixel ultra wide-angle shooter with a 114-degree field-of-view. In our time with the handset, we have found the images to be crisp with punchy colours.

Even the low-light conditions do not seem to be posing a challenge for the smartphone and it manages to keep the noise at bay. Of course, you get a ton of software controls, including a Master Mode for finetuning tint, contrast, saturation, etc. For selfies, you get a 32MP shooter sitting inside the punch-hole at the front.


Speaking of the fascia, you get a bezel-less experience with OnePlus’ latest, save for a razor-thin chin at the bottom. That’s also because the handset flaunts a curved LTPO display that measures 6.82-inches across. With the past few OnePlus smartphones, the brand has nailed the screen, and the brand’s newest launch carries that legacy forward. With a 2K resolution and 120Hz refresh rate, the visuals are sharp, and the display is extremely responsive. What aids the visuals further is OnePlus’ proprietary Display P1 chip that helps in delivering bright and true-to-colour output without sacrificing a lot of power.

To cater to multimedia lovers, the display is ably supplemented by a stereo speaker setup and support for 3D spatial audio.


While you may not be able to make out that it is a OnePlus device from the fascia, you will be able to do so as soon as you flip to the back. While the colour we have for review is unique, what immediately gets your attention is the prominent camera module. It proudly shows off the Hasselblad branding, and what we also liked is that the colour of the rear panel extends inside the module too.

The Flowy Emerald variant may draw mixed responses, though we liked it. You can also opt for a safer choice in the form of a Silky Black hue. The rest of the button and port placements are standard too. The good thing is that the camera unit’s protrusion does not result in a wobbling of the device when kept on a flat surface.

Like its predecessor, the OnePlus 12 is dust and waterproof, thanks to its IP65 rating. For durability, the back also gets a layer of Corning Gorilla Glass protection. What we did not like however is that the device is quite slippery even though the back panel has a matte finish. That said, it does not feel bulky though it tips the scales at 220g.

Hardware and Software

In terms of the hardware, the OnePlus 12 follows the recipe of a 2024 flagship to the T. The performance is taken care of by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset, which works in conjunction with up to 16 gigabytes of RAM. For storage, you get up to 512GB of built-in memory.

What differentiates the latest OnePlus device from the competition is the CPU-Vitalization, a combination of hardware and software optimisations made in partnership with Qualcomm to ensure a smooth experience. To help the phone keep its calm when pushed to the limits, it ships with a Dual Cryo-velocity vapour chamber.

The device boots the latest Android 14-based OxygenOS. There are barely any bloatware apps, except for a couple of OnePlus apps such as Notes, Clone Phone, etc.


Another highlight of the OnePlus smartphones has been the battery department; specifically the SuperVOOC charging functionality. The OnePlus 12 draws power from a 5,400mAh battery, which can be fuelled via the bundled 100W adapter.

Furthermore, you also get wireless charging with 50W AirVOOC support.

Final Thoughts

2024 has just begun, but we already are seeing an influx of Android flagships such as the Vivo X100 (review) and Samsung Galaxy S24 (first impressions). While the OnePlus 12 brings a lot to the table to stand out, its pricing of Rs 64,999 for the base variant means that buying a OnePlus smartphone is not an eyes-closed decision anymore. It also faces an arch-nemesis – the iQOO 12 (review) – which already has claimed the title of the first smartphone with the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 processor. The fact that there’s a price difference of more than Rs 12k between the two makes the case for the OnePlus 12 difficult.

However, as the title suggests, the OnePlus 12 is not just about hardware specs, but about the overall user experience. So, if you are wondering whether OnePlus has been able to get that right or not, keep your eyes peeled for the OnePlus 12 review.