It's been less than six months since themade its debut, but the Chinese phone maker behind the iPhone lookalike is already releasing an updated model dubbed the R11s and a bigger R11s Plus.
But it's not just a simple refresh, as the new R11s and R11s Plus come with larger displays -- 6-inch and 6.43-inch respectively, both in an 18:9 ratio that's similar to the Pixel 2 and Xiaomi Mi Mix 2 ($5.85 at Amazon Marketplace). Plus there are new camera tricks for even better photography.
With rear dual cameras of 20-megapixels and 16-megapixels, and a front 20-megapixel shooter powered by AI, the R11s promises to be a powerhouse photography device, something that Oppo has been emphasising with its recent phones.
Unlike other phones with dual cameras, Oppo says both of its F1.7 rear cameras are capable of taking pictures, not just utilising one camera (with the other being a monochrome or telephoto lens). Oppo says this makes pictures much better, as the phone will select the best camera for the job. For low-light shots under 50 lux lighting conditions, the phone will use the 20-megapixel sensor, for example.
It's an interesting technique to be sure, and we'll have to see how it holds up in real-world testing. Other photography-related features include an AI-powered selfie front camera, which Oppo says is trained to give you the best beauty shot. The AI will optimise the beauty settings to de-age subjects and remove skin blemishes to give you the perfect selfie every time. This happens locally, so you don't have to worry about your images being uploaded to Oppo to further train the AI.
Sadly, the 5x zoom featureisn't yet on the phone, so if you're hoping for better zoom compared to the current crop of devices, you'll have to wait. Also missing is Type-C USB. The phone still uses the old micro-USB, because Type-C cables aren't that common and Oppo wants you to charge your phone with ease. The good news, on the other hand, is it has an audio jack.
To be honest, though the R11s is a decent phone, it borrows way too much from Apple. The camera app, the faux-control center and the user interface is basically a copy of iOS. Even the new iPhone X isn't spared: The R11s comes with a feature to hide the navigation buttons with gesture controls similar to the X.
I'm not a fan, but I'm not Oppo's target audience. That's younger folks looking for an almost iPhone experience without having to pay the premium. It's no surprise why the Chinese company is doing remarkably well in its home market as well as abroad.
The phone will hit China in November, followed by Taiwan and Singapore soon, with Australia to follow next year. The R11s will retail for 2,999 Chinese yuan, which converts to about $455, £345 and AU$590 respectively, while the larger R11s Plus will retail for 3,699 Chinese yuan, or $560, £425 and AU$730.
Check back soon for our full review.
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 660
- 6-inch display (R11s), 6.43-inch (R11s Plus)
- Rear 20-megapixel and 16-megapixel camera, front 20-megapixel camera
- Memory and Storage: 4GB RAM (R11s), 6GB RAM (R11s Plus), 64GB onboard storage
- Battery: 3,200mAh (R11s), 4,000mAh (R11s Plus)