OnePlus dominated the attention of smartphone and television enthusiasts in September and October, launching a handful of new products in both segments. The second of two major introductory events centered around the OnePlus 7T Pro and OnePlus 7T Pro McLaren Edition. The latter is the latest device in a series of special editions that were launched in late 2017 with the OnePlus 5T Star Wars Edition.
After the OnePlus 6T McLaren Edition, which came on the market at the end of last year, OnePlus has worked with McLaren on a Special Edition smartphone for the second time. What does the Rs. 58.999 OnePlus 7T Pro do? The McLaren Edition differs from the regular OnePlus 7T Pro? We check to find out.
OnePlus 7T Pro McLaren Edition design
At Rs. 58,999, the OnePlus 7T Pro McLaren Edition costs Rs. 5,000 more than the regular OnePlus 7T Pro (review). Aside from an important change in specifications (more on that later), the extra money will bring you a few things, including a unique color scheme and pattern on the back, and a McLaren logo at the bottom.
You will also receive a McLaren-themed phone case in the box, a black and orange Warp Charge 30T charging adapter with the McLaren logo, and an orange charging cable braided with nylon. The case has the same pattern on the edges as the carbon bumper. In the middle is a segment with Alcantara, a fabric used in the interior of McLaren vehicles. It feels very comfortable and the case looks sturdy enough to hold the smartphone securely.
Apart from that, the McLaren Edition is identical to the regular OnePlus 7T Pro in terms of build quality. We really liked the orange accents on the edges, on the alarm controller and around the camera module as well as the unique survey map pattern around the camera module on the back. The heavy use of orange in this device is inspired by the papaya orange hue of the McLaren Racing Formula 1 vehicle, while the limited-edition McLaren Speedtrail hypercar's interior aesthetic is modeled.
Fans of McLaren Racing and McLaren's consumer sports cars will appreciate these design elements. If you're not happy with the colors and designs, the regular OnePlus 7T Pro is available in a muted "haze blue" color option.
OnePlus 7T Pro McLaren Edition – specifications and software
Under the hood, the OnePlus 7T Pro McLaren Edition is the same as the regular OnePlus 7T Pro, except for one important difference – the amount of RAM. The device has massive 12 GB of RAM, four gigabytes or 50 percent more than the regular OnePlus 7T Pro. We'll say that in a moment – it's more RAM than you might need right now. However, in the long run (maybe two or three years later) you will find that this is helpful.
The software largely corresponds to that of the regular OnePlus 7T Pro, with a few minor differences from the McLaren theme. There is a unique set of wallpapers that match the look of the phone, and the master clock widget has a font that looks a little sportier than that of the regular widget. You'll also get special fingerprint sensor animation, a bright color for the horizon, and a McLaren icon pack for the OxygenOS user interface. All of these elements go well with the exterior of the phone.
As with the regular edition, the OnePlus 7T Pro McLaren Edition also includes the Android 10-based OxygenOS 10 in the delivery state and the same path is used for software updates. This means that the device will receive software updates along with OnePlus 7T Pro.
OnePlus 7T Pro McLaren Edition – performance and battery life
We won't go into the details of the daily performance of the OnePlus 7T Pro McLaren Edition, as we already covered it in detail in our review of the regular OnePlus 7T Pro. The core experience is the same when it comes to much of the hardware and software. There is only one big difference here: 12 GB RAM.
When it comes to benchmark scores, this extra memory doesn't seem to have much of an impact. McLaren Edition's PCMark Work 2.0 score of 10,782 was the only one that was significantly higher than that of the regular version, while all other scores were roughly the same as the OnePlus 7T Pro with 8 GB of RAM.
We have used both phones side by side for a variety of tasks and while playing. Under real conditions, the additional RAM had no noticeable impact on the functioning of the phone. The standard OnePlus 7T Pro is a leader even with 8 GB of RAM, and we typically found that the McLaren Edition had at least 4.5 GB of RAM free, even when many apps were running.
The OnePlus 7T Pro McLaren Edition's battery life is reasonable. In our battery loop test, it is slightly longer than that of the OnePlus 7T Pro. The device ran for 15 hours and 22 minutes with the screen resolution set to "Auto Switch" and the refresh rate to the default setting of 90 Hz. This is most likely due to software improvements. McLaren Edition was running a newer version of OxygenOS at the time of this review than the OnePlus 7T Pro at the time of the review. In practice, we were able to use a full day per charging cycle without any problems.
OnePlus 7T Pro McLaren Edition cameras
With the exact same camera setup as the OnePlus 7T Pro (and the OnePlus 7 Pro before), the McLaren Edition doesn't offer anything new or different. In summary, we liked the performance of the primary rear camera in daylight, and the additional cameras turned out to be useful. We really liked the Super Macro mode, but we weren't thrilled with the low-light performance and colors of 4K video.
As you can see in the following photo examples, the camera performance of OnePlus 7T Pro and McLaren Edition is practically identical. As expected, the McLaren Edition has no additional advantages over the regular edition in terms of photography.
The OnePlus 7T Pro McLaren Edition is, for good reason, the Chinese company's most expensive device to date. There is a lot on offer here that sets it apart from the normal device – more RAM, a unique appearance, special edition accessories and branding that will appeal to many people.
Whether these perks are worth the extra Rs. 5,000 is another thing – we recommend that you only spend the extra money if you're a McLaren fan or want something aesthetically unique. Everyone else should buy the regular OnePlus 7T Pro. 8 GB RAM is more than enough for an Android smartphone for the time being, and the core experience of the cheaper "haze blue" model is largely the same as that of the McLaren Edition.
Is Realme X2 Pro the OnePlus 7T killer you've been waiting for? We discussed this on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts or RSS, download the episode, or just click the play button below.