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OnePlus Phones Are Getting Google Assistant's Ambient Mode

OnePlus has announced that it has started rolling out the Ambient Mode for Google Assistant to some of its phones. However, the rollout will be staged, which means that some users will receive it before others. In a company blog, OnePlus wrote, “By partnering with Google, we are excited to bring the Google Assistant-powered “Ambient Mode” to your OnePlus device (available on OnePlus 3 and above).”

This means that the mode will be available for all OnePlus smartphone right from the OnePlus 3 to the latest OnePlus 7T Pro. Giving insights on the Ambient Mode, the company wrote, “It is a “proactive” Google Assistant experience that is available whenever the device is being charged. You can access proactive information and suggestions on weather, agenda, entertainment, reminders, and more. The feature can also be used to turn a phone into a digital photo frame or as the interface to control smart home devices, such as lights, or music players.”

The phone maker also explained the steps to use the Google Assistant Ambient Mode. To do so, one needs to connect their OnePlus device to a charger, click the notification and follow the guidance to finish the setup process. The feature can also be enabled by selecting Google App Settings > Assistant > Devices (Phone).

Google had announced the feature at IFA last year. This mode turns your Android smartphone or tablet into a smart display by showing information from your calendar, the current weather, your notifications, your reminders, music controls, and your smart home controls. It can even show photos from Google Photos, turning your smartphone or tablet into a digital photo frame.

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India Shipped 152mn Phones in 2019, Registers 8% Growth as Apple Leads Premium Segment

Representative image of the rise of digital technology usage in India. (Photo: Telenor)

Representative image of the rise of digital technology usage in India. (Photo: Telenor)

According to IDC’s annual data from the Indian smartphone industry, Vivo led the sub-premium category, and OnePlus played a key role too.

  • News18.com
  • Last Updated: February 7, 2020, 3:55 PM IST

India is among the few smartphone markets that are still registering growth, as most developed markets are seeing a slowdown in smartphone shipments due to saturation. According to IDC’s annual data of 2019, India saw a total of 152.5 million phones being shipped through the year, which marks an 8 percent annual growth over what was shipped in 2018. While India no longer remains in double digit growth phase, industry watchers and companies will still take note of the key growth areas that are still contributing to smartphone shipments growing in the country.

IDC’s data further states that the share of online smartphone shipments are steadily on the rise in India. Upasana Joshi, associate research manager at IDC India states on this matter, “The online growth momentum continued through the year with a record share of 41.7% in 2019, growing by 18.4% YoY annually due to deep discounts, cashback offers, buyback/exchange schemes, and complete protection offers clubbed with attractive financing schemes like No Cost EMIs across major model line ups and brands.” In contrast, the offline smartphone market grew only 1.6 percent in India, through the year.

In terms of price distribution in India, IDC states that the sub-$200 (~sub-Rs 15,000) smartphone market in India accounted for 79 percent of the market. The mid-range market, which roughly stands for between Rs 15,000 and Rs 35,000, captured 19.3 percent of the market, while the remaining sliver of 1.7 percent was captured by premium devices. In the latter, IDC notes that Apple crossed Samsung to capture 47.4 percent of the premium smartphone market in India, thanks to the iPhone XR and a lower priced launch of the iPhone 11.

In the premium end of the mid-range phones, IDC states that Vivo led the charts with 28 percent market share, largely thanks to the Vivo V15 Pro. Vivo was closely followed by OnePlus in this segment, thanks to the OnePlus 7. With 5G on the horizon and more interesting form factor smartphones on the way, it remains to be seen how the Indian market fares through 2020 and beyond.

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One-Third of All Phones Sold Above Rs 30,000 in India in 2019 were by OnePlus

According to Counterpoint’s latest market data, Samsung ranks third in the premium market with 26 percent share, while Apple ranks second with 25 percent.

IANS

Updated:February 4, 2020, 2:05 PM IST

One-Third of All Phones Sold Above Rs 30,000 in India in 2019 were by OnePlus
According to Counterpoint’s latest market data, Samsung ranks third in the premium market with 26 percent share, while Apple ranks second with 25 percent.

Riding on its OnePlus 7 series, Chinese smartphone maker OnePlus led the Indian premium smartphone market in 2019 with 33 per cent market share. The company became the first-ever premium smartphone brand surpassing 20 lakh shipments in a year in India. Samsung with 26 per cent was second while Apple with 25 per cent market share came third in the premium segment, according to Counterpoint Research’s ‘Market Monitor Service for 2019.’

Apple was the fastest growing premium smartphone brand in 2019 with 41 per cent (YoY) driven by multiple price cuts on iPhone XR throughout the year. Overall, the premium smartphone segment in India (above Rs 30,000) registered its highest ever recorded shipments this year, growing 29 per cent in the year. “2019 has been a remarkable year for us at OnePlus. Every milestone we have achieved strengthened our pursuit for excellence in technology. We will remain dedicated towards creating burden-less and best-in-class user experience,” said Pete Lau, Founder and CEO, OnePlus.

OnePlus 7 device emerged as the number one premium smartphone model in 2019. The contribution of OnePlus’ ultra-premium segment to overall OnePlus portfolio grew to a whopping 25 per cent in 2019 — from just 2 per cent in 2018. According to Karn Chauhan, Research Analyst, Counterpoint Research, OnePlus’ ongoing retail expansion in India can be attributed to the increased sales volumes. “Its recent partnerships with renowned retail distributors, as well as successfully extending its unique premium brand experience to retail customers through OnePlus Experience Centers, have played a crucial role in its growth,” said Chauhan.

Similarly, the ultra-premium segment (above Rs 45,000) emerged as the fastest growing segment with 63 per cent (YoY) growth. “OnePlus continues to enjoy strong word of mouth communication from existing users, which also led the brand to have over 5 million strong community in India alone, a substantial number for a premium tech brand,” said Chauhan. Examples of innovations include its adoption of high refresh rate (90Hz), almost bezel-less displays and being first to launch smartphones with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 855 Series application processor in India.

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OnePlus 8 Series Expected to Feature Wireless Charging

OnePlus has managed to keep the cost of its phones low by staying away from including wireless charging support in its smartphones.

OnePlus 8 Series Expected to Feature Wireless Charging
OnePlus 8 Pro leaked renders
(file photo)

OnePlus fans have a reason to cheer as the Chinese smartphone maker may offer wireless charging on its upcoming OnePlus 8 series smartphones. OnePlus recently became a part of the Wireless Power Consortium (WPC), which works with the purpose of developing worldwide compatibility for all wireless chargers and wireless power sources. It is widely assumed that the Chinese smartphone maker would not have joined the consortium without actually planning to add wireless charging to its smartphones. However, the company has not made any announcements as to whether the OnePlus 8 series will have the wireless charging feature.

The WPC website has added OnePlus’s name to its members’ list. With the inclusion of its name, OnePlus has joined the likes of Samsung, LG, Apple, Oppo, HMD Global, Huawei, and Asus. It is believed that OnePlus has managed to keep the cost of its phones low by staying away from including wireless charging support in its smartphones. The Chinese smartphone maker has, however, often spoken of the prowess of its wired fast charging technology to avoid including wireless charging.

The official launch date of OnePlus 8 series is not known, but several leaks have given a hint as to what it could offer. According to reports, the OnePlus 8 Pro will be equipped with a Li-Po battery. It will feature the company’s Fluid AMOLED display with 120Hz refresh rate with a resolution of 1440 x 3120 pixels. It is also expected to come with the new Snapdragon 865 chipset.


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OnePlus Concept One Coming to India on February 8, But It's Only for You to See

OnePlus is going on a 10-city, eight-country world tour with the Concept One, and you can even attend a product briefing session if you’re too intrigued by it.

OnePlus Concept One Coming to India on February 8, But It's Only for You to See
OnePlus is going on a 10-city, eight-country world tour with the Concept One, and you can even attend a product briefing session if you’re too intrigued by it.

OnePlus drew eyeballs and raised eyebrows in equal proportions when it unveiled the Concept One smartphone. Earlier this year, OnePlus used the CES 2020 stage to unveil a concept phone which used an electrochromic glass on top of the rear camera to make it look as if it simply dissolves into the glass, when not in use. Now, fans of the brand and intrigued users in India can catch a glimpse of what the hype is about in person, between February 8 and 14, at OnePlus Experience Stores in Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru.

Alongside seeing the device in person, OnePlus is even hosting a one-off “product briefing” session for the most intrigued people at 10AM on February 8, where attendees will also get a chance to interact with members of OnePlus’ product development team. The OnePlus Concept One has been a divisive product — while some have found it an interesting piece of technology, others have taken to various forums to question the real utility of a product like the Concept One. While it might seem like a neat gimmick at the onset, using an electrochromic glass at the rear raises its own problems. The biggest of these is durability — if you drop the phone and break the glass, it can be incredibly expensive (and difficult) to fix.

That, though, is not an issue here, since OnePlus does not quite intend to make this into a production device. Instead, it is only showing what its R&D department can do with a smartphone. In any case, the upcoming ‘world tour’ should help answer many questions around it. The device will be hosted at OnePlus’ Connaught Place store in Delhi, High Street Phoenix store in Mumbai, and Brigade Road store in Bengaluru. Further information regarding the Concept One preview, along with a link to register for the product session on February 8, can be found in OnePlus’ official forum post regarding the tour.

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OnePlus 6, OnePlus 6T Get OxygenOS 10.3.1 Update With Bug Fixes, December Security Patch

OnePlus is currently working on its upcoming One Plus 8 series, likely to be powered by Snapdragon 865 SoC and running Android 10 OS.

OnePlus 6, OnePlus 6T Get OxygenOS 10.3.1 Update With Bug Fixes, December Security Patch
Image for Representation

The OnePlus 6 and OnePlus 6T have finally started to receive a stable version of the Android 10 update via OxygenOS 10.3.1. The process of rolling out this update began a month ago but had to be stopped due to certain bugs. The new OxygenOS 10.3.1 update brings fixes to the system and gallery and also includes the December 2019 Android security patch. This is being rolled out in a staged manner, which means some users will receive it earlier than the rest.

According to the changelog published on the official OnePlus forums, issues pertaining to unlocking the device have been fixed where an issue was causing a black screen to appear after unlocking the device using fingerprint. The update also fixes an issue related to the animation logo on the boot screen, fixes the heating up of the device while being put on charging, and random loss of connection 5Ghz hotspot has also been fixed.

In terms of camera and gallery, the image preview time in Pro mode has been optimized and the issue of videos not showing up in the gallery has also been addressed. The usual improvements in system stability and fixing of bugs have also been done. OnePlus 6 and OnePlus 6T users can check for the latest OxygenOS update on their device by going to Settings menu. Meanwhile, the brand is currently working on its upcoming One Plus 8 series, which is expected to be powered the Snapdragon 865 SoC and is likely to run Android 10 OS.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Lite vs Samsung Galaxy S10 Lite vs OnePlus 7T: Sub-Rs 40,000 Smartphone Showdown

Samsung recently launched the Galaxy Note 10 Lite in India soon followed by the Galaxy S10 Lite. Now both the handsets seem to be an attempt to take on OnePlus since they are priced around Rs 40,000. While the Note 10 Lite brings the full experience of the S-Pen and a triple camera setup at a more affordable budget, the Galaxy S10 Lite is claimed to offer a top of the line camera experience. OnePlus on the other hand, has been dominating the affordable-flagship segment for years, and currently, the OnePlus 7T is a highly recommended smartphone.

Here’s a comparison of the two new Samsung handset with the OnePlus 7T

Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Lite Specifications

The Galaxy Note 10 features a 6.7-inch Full HD+ (2400×1080 pixels) Infinity-O Super AMOLED display. The handset is powered by the Exynos 9810 octa-core processor. You get 6GB or 8GB of RAM options along with 128GB of storage with an expandability option of up to 1TB.

The Note 10 Lite comes with a triple rear camera setup sitting inside a squarish module. The main camera is a 12-megapixel sensor with Dual Pixel autofocus, an f/1.7 lens, and OIS paired to a 12-megapixel wide-angle camera with an f/2.2 aperture, and a 12-megapixel telephoto lens with an f/2.4 aperture and OIS for stabilisation. At the front is a 32-megapixel camera with an f/2.2 aperture.

Of course, the Note series means an S-Pen stylus, which connects with the phone via Bluetooth Low-Energy and offers all the features that you would expect like Air Commands, taking a picture, controlling multimedia and so on. Rest of the features include a 4,500mAh battery with support for Super Fast charging technology, 3.5mm audio jack an in-display fingerprint sensor for authentication as well as face unlock. The handset will be offered in Aura Glow, Aura Black, and Aura Red colour options.

The Galaxy Note 10 Lite is priced at Rs 38,999 for 6GB variant and Rs 40,999 for 8GB variant.

Samsung Galaxy S10 Lite Specifications

The Galaxy S10 Lite comes with a 6.7-inch Full HD+ (2400×1080 pixels) Infinity-O Super AMOLED display. This is very similar to the Galaxy Note 10 Lite as both feature similar dimensions, a centrally-positioned hole-punch for the front camera, and slim bezels. The Galaxy S10 Lite is powered by the 7nm Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor which is paired with 8GB of RAM. Samsung hasn’t announced the 6GB RAM variant in India. There is 128GB of internal storage with the option of adding a microSD card of up to 1TB.

At the back, there is a triple rear camera setup with a 48-megapixel primary sensor with an f/2.0 lens along with Super Steady OIS for stabilisation. This is paired with a 12-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera with an f/2.2 aperture and 123-degree field of view along with a 5-megapixel macro camera with an f/2.4 lens. At the front, there is a 32-megapixel camera with an f/2.2 lens. Other features include a 4,500mAh battery with 25W fast charging support, an in-display fingerprint sensor as well as face unlock. Samsung will be offering the handset in Prism White, Prism Black, and Prism Blue colour options.

The Galaxy S10 Lite is priced at Rs 39,999.

OnePlus 7T Specifications

The OnePlus 7T was launched back in September 2019 and comes with a 6.55-inch Fluid AMOLED display with a 20:9 aspect ratio. It has a tiny waterdrop notch and comes with 90Hz refresh rate. The resolution is FHD+ or 2400×1080 pixels and it also supports HDR10+ along with sRGB and DP3 colour gamuts. The display also houses a fingerprint scanner.

The handset is powered by the Snapdragon 855+ processor which is a slightly tweaked version of the Snapdragon 855. You get up to 8GB of LPDDR4X RAM and 256GB of UFS 3.0 storage. In the camera department, there is a triple camera setup which includes the same setup as the OnePlus 7 Pro, but in a horizontal arrangement in a round module. The primary camera includes a 48-megapixel Sony IMX586 sensor with OIS, EIS and an f/1.6 aperture lens. The second camera is a 12-megapixel sensor with an f/2.2 aperture and a 16-megapixel sensor with an f/2.2 aperture ultra-wide lens. The camera offers 2x zoom and can shoot 4K videos at 60fps and up to 960fps at 720p. The front camera includes a 16-megapixel sensor with an f/2.0 aperture and fixed focus and EIS. The camera also brings in a macro mode.

The battery size has been increased to 3,800mAh and now support Warp Charge 30T which is said to offer 70-percent charge in just half an hour. The handset also comes with Android 10 based OxygenOS right out of the box and is offered in two colours- Frosted Silver and Glacier Blue. As for the price, the OnePlus 7T was launched with a price tag of Rs 37,999 for the 8GB + 128GB variant and Rs 39,999 for the 8GB + 256GB variant

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OnePlus 8 Pro With 120Hz Refresh Rate Display Spotted in Leaked Photo

The upcoming OnePlus 8 Pro is likely to come with a 6.7-inch Super AMOLED display and will be powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 Mobile Platform.

OnePlus 8 Pro With 120Hz Refresh Rate Display Spotted in Leaked Photo
one plus 8 pro leaked image
(source: truetech official/ twitter)

A leaked photo of OnePlus’ upcoming offering the OnePlus 8 Pro claims that the device will offer a 120Hz refresh rate display. In a tweet shared by TrueTech Official, it can be seen that the phone offers three refresh rates options- 120Hz, 90Hz and 60Hz.

The device is likely to come with a 6.7-inch Super AMOLED display and as per tipsters, the phone will be powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 Mobile Platform along with 8GB of RAM paired with 128GB or 256GB of storage. The memory chip that the device will house is expected to be the latest LPDDR5 version. Furthermore, it is said that the OnePlus 8 Pro will include Universal Flash Storage 3.0 which will let apps and games open quickly.

On the rear, the phone will have a 64-megapixel primary camera with a 20-megapixel ultra-wide camera and a 12-megapixel telephoto camera with 10x hybrid zoom along with a Time of Flight depth sensor. The sensor basically measures the time taken by an infrared beam to bounce off from a subject and return to the device, with this data more accurate depth measurements can be computed to deliver improved AR capabilities, more natural bokeh blurs for portraits among others, claimed the reports.

At the front, the device is expected to house a 12-megapixel punch-hole selfie camera. Furthermore, it is being said that the device will be powered by a 4500mAh battery that can charge at 50W.

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| Edited by: Chhavianshika Singh

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Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Lite vs OnePlus 7T: Which Android Phone Should You Buy For Rs 40,000

Samsung has just launched the Galaxy Note 10 Lite in India which seems like a bid to compete with OnePlus. Priced under Rs 40,000, the new Note 10 Lite brings the full experience of the S-Pen and a triple camera setup at a more affordable budget. OnePlus on the other hand, has been dominating the affordable-flagship segment for years, and currently, the OnePlus 7T is a highly recommended smartphone.

So does the new Galaxy Note 10 Lite have what it takes to dominate the sub-Rs 40,000 segment?

Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Lite Specifications

The Galaxy Note 10 features a 6.7-inch Full HD+ (2400×1080 pixels) Infinity-O Super AMOLED display. The handset is powered by the Exynos 9810 octa-core processor. You get 6GB or 8GB of RAM options along with 128GB of storage with an expandability option of up to 1TB.

The Note 10 Lite comes with a triple rear camera setup sitting inside a squarish module. The main camera is a 12-megapixel sensor with Dual Pixel autofocus, an f/1.7 lens, and OIS paired to a 12-megapixel wide-angle camera with an f/2.2 aperture, and a 12-megapixel telephoto lens with an f/2.4 aperture and OIS for stabilisation. At the front is a 32-megapixel camera with an f/2.2 aperture.

Of course, the Note series means an S-Pen stylus, which connects with the phone via Bluetooth Low-Energy and offers all the features that you would expect like Air Commands, taking a picture, controlling multimedia and so on. Rest of the features include a 4,500mAh battery with support for Super Fast charging technology, 3.5mm audio jack an in-display fingerprint sensor for authentication as well as face unlock. The handset will be offered in Aura Glow, Aura Black, and Aura Red colour options.

The Galaxy Note 10 Lite is priced at Rs 38,999 for 6GB variant and Rs 40,999 for 8GB variant.

OnePlus 7T Specifications

The OnePlus 7T was launched back in September 2019 and comes with a 6.55-inch Fluid AMOLED display with a 20:9 aspect ratio. It has a tiny waterdrop notch and comes with 90Hz refresh rate. The resolution is FHD+ or 2400×1080 pixels and it also supports HDR10+ along with sRGB and DP3 colour gamuts. The display also houses a fingerprint scanner.

The handset is powered by the Snapdragon 855+ processor which is a slightly tweaked version of the Snapdragon 855. You get up to 8GB of LPDDR4X RAM and 256GB of UFS 3.0 storage. In the camera department, there is a triple camera setup which includes the same setup as the OnePlus 7 Pro, but in a horizontal arrangement in a round module. The primary camera includes a 48-megapixel Sony IMX586 sensor with OIS, EIS and an f/1.6 aperture lens. The second camera is a 12-megapixel sensor with an f/2.2 aperture and a 16-megapixel sensor with an f/2.2 aperture ultra-wide lens. The camera offers 2x zoom and can shoot 4K videos at 60fps and up to 960fps at 720p. The front camera includes a 16-megapixel sensor with an f/2.0 aperture and fixed focus and EIS. The camera also brings in a macro mode.

The battery size has been increased to 3,800mAh and now support Warp Charge 30T which is said to offer 70-percent charge in just half an hour. The handset also comes with Android 10 based OxygenOS right out of the box and is offered in two colours- Frosted Silver and Glacier Blue. As for the price, the OnePlus 7T was launched with a price tag of Rs 37,999 for the 8GB + 128GB variant and Rs 39,999 for the 8GB + 256GB variant

Which One Should You Buy?

Well, if you can about core performance and a smooth 90Hz display, then the OnePlus is a clear winner. Besides, the OnePlus 7T also offers Warp Charge 30T fast charging, and a close to stock Android experience with OxygenOS.

Samsung does offer an interesting package with the Note 10 Lite. You get Samsung’s pristine Super AMOLED panel and then there is the S-Pen which is great if you love doodling or prefer writing notes instead of typing. Buy the Galaxy Note 10 Lite if you truly love Samsung and want to make full use of a stylus.


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Amazon Great Indian Sale: Get Rs 15,000 Amazon Pay Cashback With a New OnePlus TV

Yet another month, yet another sale, and yet more enticing offers to splurge on. This is particularly true if you want to buy a new TV. The OnePlus TVs are back on sale during the Amazon Great Indian Sale which is now live. The offers are applicable on both variants of the OnePlus TV—the OnePlus TV 55 Q1 and the OnePlus TV 55 Q1 Pro. The OnePlus TV 55 Q1 priced at Rs 69,899 and the OnePlus TV 55 Q1 Pro sporting a sticker price of Rs 99,899. That is before the discounts kick in.

For starters, you will get Rs 10,000 cashback as Amazon Pay Balance if you pay for the OnePlus TV 55Q1 through any prepaid methods—that is, pay for it using a credit card, debit card, Amazon Pay wallet or UPI. The cashback gets added to your Amazon Pay account for further transactions and payments. If you buy the OnePlus TV 55Q1 Pro, the return that you get as Amazon Pay cashback is Rs 15,000. If you are paying with an SBI credit card, you can avail a discount of Rs 1,500 on either of the OnePlus TV variants. This means the price of the OnePlus TV 55 Q1 becomes Rs 68,399 while the OnePlus TV 55 Q1 Pro will cost Rs 98,399.

And if you have an older TV to exchange, that will get you a maximum of Rs 2,050 depending on the screen size, age and brand of the TV. In the previous Amazon sale, this value was Rs 9,830 at best, which makes the current exchange offer look pale in comparison. You can also choose to avail the No Cost EMI option which includes credit cards from American Express, Axis Bank, ICICI Bank, Amazon Pay ICICI card, HDFC Bank, Citi Bank, SBI, IndusInd, Yes Bank, Kotak, RBL, HSBC and Standard Chartered, as well as select bank debit cards, Bajaj Finserv EMI cards and Amazon Pay EMI.

Some of the features that the OnePlus TV line-up packs in include Super Resolution, Contrast enhancement and support for Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos technologies. The 55-inch QLED panel has the native 4K resolution. It also has the widest HDR support as well—for HDR10, HDR10+, HLG and Dolby Vision. Some of the features that the OnePlus TV line-up packs in include Super Resolution, Contrast enhancement and support for Dolby Atmos as well. While the feature set is largely the same across both TVs, the OnePlus TV 55 Q1 Pro also has an integrated slide-out soundbar-esque speaker system which has 8 speakers—two facing backwards and six facing towards the front, for wider sound and bass as well. The total sound output is rated at 50-watts. These TVs run Google’s Android TV, including popular streaming apps such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Hotstar.

Over the past few months, OnePlus has rolled out updates that have significantly improved the picture quality as well as the overall user experience of the premium OnePlus TVs—something that was perhaps to be expected from first generation devices.