OnePlus 2 equals $329: Flagship has boosted specs, slightly higher price

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The OnePlus 2 runs Android 5.1, with the company's Oxygen OS (largely stock Android) added on(Credit: OnePlus)

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Chinese startup OnePlus is back with its second flagship Android phone. Following last year's OnePlus One, the OnePlus 2 (perhaps we could just call it the "three?") has an upgraded set of specs and a slightly higher price to match the company's growing popularity.

The OnePlus 2 continues along the same lines as its predecessor, cramming impressive specs into a phone with a (relatively) cheap price tag. US$329 full retail gets you a 5.5-inch 1080p display with a 1,500:1 contrast ratio (the iPhone 6 is 1,400:1), a Snapdragon 810 processor, 4 GB RAM and 16 GB internal storage. A 64 GB model jumps up to $389.

The handset has a frame made of a magnesium/aluminum alloy, with a variety of backings to choose from, including bamboo, rosewood, Apricot wood, Kevlar and the familiar Sandstone backing from last year's flagship.

The OnePlus 2 also joins Apple and Samsung in adding a fingerprint sensor home button to its new model. It's also one of the first of (likely) many upcoming smartphones to use the new reversible USB Type C standard for its charging and data port.

Elsewhere the phone has a 13 MP rear camera with ƒ/2.0 aperture, a 5 MP front shooter and a 3,300 mAh battery. It runs Android 5.1 Lollipop with the company's Oxygen OS, a largely stock Android experience, with a few tweaks like built-in Swiftkey keyboard, a dark mode and custom app permissions.

One of the OnePlus 2's more unique features is a hardware toggle for switching Android's notification profiles. On other Lollipop-running phones, you need to waken the phone, hit the volume button and then choose among three notification alert options: all, priority or none. The OnePlus 2 maps those three options to a sliding switch, no unlocking of the phone necessary.

Unfortunately OnePlus' annoying invite system is back for round two, so you won't be able to just go online (or head to a store) and buy it. You'll need to get on an invite waiting list, and then wait for the option of buying it.

... by that time, you may also be able to buy new flagships from Motorola, Samsung and a little company called Apple, so you should have plenty of time to see how all of these late 2015 flagships stack up before making a call on the (likely cheaper) OnePlus 2.

Product page: OnePlus

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