Is the OnePlus 12 worth it? We think so

Is the OnePlus 12 worth the wait? Image shows the green OnePlus 12 next to a red question mark on a blue gradient background.

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As OnePlus finds itself moving into the mainstream, its flagship phones continue to get more impressive – is the OnePlus 12 worth the wait? As the latest smartphone to be released from OnePlus, the OnePlus 12 doesn’t disappoint with its specs and benchmarks marking a significant improvement over the OnePlus 11. If you closely follow the Android phone market and are considering an upgrade, you might find yourself asking if it’s worth holding out for the global launch of the OnePlus 12 – well, it’s finally here!

As a cheaper alternative bringing many of the same features as established high-end smartphones, the OnePlus 12 offers a tempting package. In this article, we’ll delve into the upgrades and confirmed pricing of the OnePlus 12 to help you make an informed decision now that the device is available globally.

When will the OnePlus 12 be released globally?

The OnePlus 12 officially launched in China on the 5th of December 2023, and following the 23rd of January 2024, the OnePlus 12 is now officially available for the global market to pre-order before its release date on the 6th of February. The OnePlus launch event saw the full reveal of the OnePlus 12 alongside the OnePlus 12R, its more affordable alternative that’s coming later down the line.

What are the pricing options for the OnePlus 12?

At the time of writing, the OnePlus 12 has been launched both in China and now globally, so we’re able to detail the full price and storage variants of the new OnePlus flagship. Available in two colors, Flowy Emerald and Silky Black, there are also two alternatives when it comes to storage: 12GB RAM and 256GB storage, or 16GB RAM and 512GB storage. You still get two storage options, but the 1TB model that’s available in China hasn’t gotten the global releases it was hoped to.

Here’s the global pricing for the OnePlus 12:

  • 12GB + 256GB – $799/£849
  • 16GB + 512GB – $899/£999

Here’s how it compares to the Chinese pricing:

  • 12GB RAM + 256GB storage: CNY 4,299 ($607)
  • 16GB RAM + 512GB storage: CNY 4,799 ($677)
  • 16GB RAM + 1TB storage: CNY 5,299 ($748)
  • 24GB RAM + 1TB storage: CNY 5,799 ($819)

Does the OnePlus 12 support wireless charging?

Given that the OnePlus 11, released in February 2023, lacked the wireless charging feature, the question of whether or not the OnePlus 12 will be able to charge wirelessly has been fairly frequent. Well, rest assured: the OnePlus 12 will support wireless charging, and at impressive speeds that potentially make it worth the wait. Using the OnePlus Airvooc wireless charger, you can achieve support of up to 50W wireless charging, allowing for fast and convenient charging without the need for cables.

What improvements does the OnePlus 12 offer over the OnePlus 11?

The OnePlus 12 does have some upgrades over its predecessor in areas, and though this will give you a brief overview, you can read in more depth about the OnePlus 12 vs the OnePlus 11 to further glean what separates the two devices.

Brighter display and better design

One of the standout features of the OnePlus 12 is its significantly brighter, larger, and more vibrant display. While the OnePlus 11 offered a peak brightness of 1,300 nits, the OnePlus 12 takes it up a notch with a peak brightness of 4,500 nits, the highest currently offered by any smartphone. Combined with its 6.82-inch QHD screen, the OnePlus 12 offers a far more immersive and vibrant display than its predecessor.

Alongside its improved display comes a more refined design, which gives the OnePlus aesthetic an aluminum frame to level up its curved screen and thin profile. You also get a boost from a no IP rating to a rating of IP65.

Enhanced camera setup

The rear camera and front camera setup on the OnePlus 12 is expected to be a notable upgrade from the OnePlus 11. With a 50-megapixel main camera, a 64-megapixel periscope telephoto camera with 3x optical zoom, and a 48-megapixel ultrawide camera, the OnePlus 12 promises exceptional photography capabilities. Its 13-channel multispectral color sensor brings a wider spectrum of colors to your photography, allowing you to capture your life in more detail than ever. For the selfie lover, the front camera is an impressive 32MP, showing that OnePlus is upping the game on the front and rear camera fronts.

✓ Marla’s thoughts

Only good on paper?

While the camera specs of the OnePlus 12 seem impressive on paper, we can’t be sure of its performance until we’ve has actual hands-on experience with the device. Often what makes a camera experience so good is not always the camera itself, but the on-device software. Other phones, such as those by Google or Apple, really seem to excel at this, so we’ll have to wait and see what OnePlus brings to the table.

More powerful processor

The OnePlus 12 is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3, Qualcomm’s most powerful smartphone chip to date. This upgrade promises improved performance and efficiency, with benchmarks suggesting a 20% increase in efficiency compared to its predecessor chipset, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2. Powered by OxygenOS 14, based on Android 14, it’s likely we can expect a highly optimized and speedy user experience from the OnePlus 12 that might make it worth the wait.

Faster storage and bigger battery

The OnePlus 12 is said to offer faster storage across all variants, with UFS 4.0 flash storage standard across the board. This ensures smoother performance and faster app loading times. However, this is not the only big upgrade coming to the OnePlus 12: the device is also getting a huge 5,400 mAh battery, bringing significantly boosted battery life and fast charging capabilities with it. Offering wired charging speeds of 100W and wireless speeds of 50W, the OnePlus 12 has shaken up the smartphone market.

Should You Wait for the OnePlus 12?

The decision of whether to wait for the OnePlus 12 or purchase the OnePlus 11 ultimately depends on your personal preferences and requirements. While the OnePlus 11 is undoubtedly a great phone, the OnePlus 12 offers several significant upgrades that might make it the worth wait. The brighter display, more powerful processor, wireless charging capabilities, enhanced camera setup, and faster storage make the OnePlus 12 a compelling choice for any smartphone user.

However, if you’re in urgent need of a new phone or prefer an even more affordable option, other OnePlus phones still make a solid choice. Ultimately, OnePlus is becoming a known presence in the smartphone industry, creating devices with specs that rival dominant competition such as the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra and the iPhone 15 Pro Max. With the releases of this year, we’re set to enter into a new era of flagship smartphones not just for OnePlus, but for the whole tech community

Marla writes across a wide range of topics across PC Guide, including AI, PC hardware, and news on the latest tech releases. She's a passionate writer that's interested in the future of technology.