OnePlus Nord – Gold Award
If you’re not familiar with OnePlus then it’s a brand worth taking seriously, especially if you’re in the market for a flagship-feeling Android phone without the hefty price.
The OnePlus Nord will set you back £379, slightly more than the Pixel 4a and below that £419 iPhone SE. For your cash, you’re getting a phone that feels, and performs, like it’s worth a whole lot more.
Related: Is the Nord a value photography contender? Have your say on the best cheap camera phone
What we love – Glorious display, loads of flagship benefits and a battery that charges very fast
The Nord really is packed with features you’d have normally had to pay at least double the asking price here for. It’s a 5G phone (don’t worry, it’ll still work on 4G and 3G networks too) so you’ll benefit from faster downloads if you’re on a 5G plan and in an area where it’s live.
It also has a super-smooth nearly edge-to-edge 6.44-inch OLED screen, nippy performance that’s ace for demanding games like Call of Duty and PUBG and even a fingerprint sensor inside the display. If you’d like to unlock the phone even quicker then there’s face unlock too.
While the battery life itself will just about get you through the day, it’s just how blazing fast the Nord charges that really piqued our interest. With the phone completely depleted, a mere 58 minutes of charging took us back to 100%.
Flip the phone over and you’ll find not one, not two, but four cameras. We like the main 48-megapixel snapper that captures colourful snaps and there’s a dedicated night mode that’ll brighten up your party shots (with admittedly varying results). There are even two cameras on the front, with one being ultra-wide to fit more faces into your selfies.
We’ll talk about the other cameras further down…
What we don’t like – Scratches easily, secondary cameras are a bit rubbish
There is very little to dislike here, especially when you consider it’ll cost you less than £400 for the 128GB of storage model with plenty of memory to keep everything running smoothly.
Of course, we did pick up a few areas that could be improved. While the main camera is good, the other three rear cameras are nothing to write home about. There’s an ultra wide that could be a bit sharper, a macro that’s best avoided and a depth camera that seems to do very little.
We’ve also noticed that the screen scratches very easily, with our review unit picking up far more marks than other phones when in our pocket. Our advice? Replace the included plastic screen protector with a better alternative straight away.
It’s cheap, looks good and has a bevvy of tech you’d normally have to pay a lot more for. The OnePlus Nord is a budget Android phone that’s easy to recommend.
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