OnePlus 5 vs Galaxy S8 review

OnePlus is no longer a startup and is now on its fifth-generation of flagship device, but can it beat the behemoth that is Samsung and its impressive Galaxy S8? Here we compare the OnePlus 5 with the Galaxy S8 in aspects such as price, design and specs. Read: Best phones for 2017.

Before we begin, it's worth noting that there was no OnePlus 4. The previous device was the OnePlus 3T, which was a performance upgrade of the OnePlus 3. The firm skipped to the number five because four is unlucky in China. Also see: OnePlus 3T vs OnePlus 5.

OnePlus 5 vs Galaxy S8 Price

The OnePlus 5 is the firm's most expensive phone to date. Starting at £449, it might not be the crazy bargain OnePlus devices used to be but it's still cheaper than the Galay S8. It's understandable that as the company matures, it looks to increase profits.

View the OnePlus 5 from OnePlus here. It's also available exclusively with O2 in the UK on contract. 

With Samsung's Galaxy S8 starting at £689, the OnePlus 5 represents a big saving. Buying a device outright, which is the only real way we can compare, is tricky so a saving of £240 makes the OnePlus 5 much more accessible.

View Galaxy S8 contract options at Carphone Warehouse here, from £47.99 per month. 

OnePlus 5 vs Galaxy S8 Design and Build

The OnePlus 5 is the thinner, lighter and more compact phone here but that's partly because it has a smaller screen. It's without a doubt a gorgeous handset but so is the Galaxy S8, just in a different way.

Samsung's Galaxy S8 might be bigger but it's an astonishing size for a phone with a 5.8in display. The edge screen and tiny bezels at the top and bottom are impressive in order to achieve this. The glass design does have drawbacks, though.

It's a slippery phone so you'll probably want to put a case on it which isn't the, er, case for the OnePlus 5. The screen has also meant the fingerprint scanner is on the rear and it's in a really awkward place to reach next to the camera.

Galaxy S8 design

OnePlus sticks to a more traditional design with the fingerprint sensor on the front and also has the advantage of the Alert Slider on the side. This means you can quick switch between audio profiles like 'silent'.

Samsung has a custom button on the side but this is restricted to launching Bixby, the firm's digital assistant.

A big deal for some will be the fact the Galaxy S8 has an IP68 rating so it's fully waterproof. The OnePlus 5 having no IP rating is one indication of why it's cheaper. Both phones, we're pleased to report, have a headphone jack.

OnePlus 5 design

OnePlus 5 vs Galaxy S8 Specs and Hardware

There's no doubt that the Galaxy S8 has a better screen than the OnePlus. The 5.8in has a higher resolution at Quad HD, although runs at Full HD+ by default. It also has dual curved edges on both sides creating the 'Infinity Display' and impressive Super AMOLED technology.

Meanwhile the OnePlus 5's is much more standard at 5.5in, Full HD and a regular rectangular shape. The firm uses a similar technology it calls Optic AMOLED. The screen is another reason why the phone is cheaper but it might suit some people better than the unusually long 18.5:9 aspect ratio of the Galaxy S8.

Galaxy S8 screen

In the UK, the phones have different processors with a Snapdragon 835 in the OnePlus 5 and the Galaxy S8 has Samsung's own Exynos 8895. Both are high-end chips and provide slick performance, but it's worth noting that the OnePlus 5 has a whopping 6GB of RAM as standard whereas the Galaxy S8 has 4GB.

Note: OnePlus has been accused of cheating benchmarks with the OnePlus 5 - read about it on XDA.

You can even get an 8GB version of the OnePlus 5 which has 128GB of storage. Impressive stuff and probably worth the extra £50 for a lot of users, especially considering there's no microSD card slot. The Galaxy S8 does offer expandable storage but the 6/128GB model isn't UK bound so it's swings and roundabouts.

There's largely no difference in terms of connectivity and the like but should it matter to you, the Galaxy S8 additionally has a barometer, heart rate monitor and SpO2 sensor.

Both have USB-C ports and fast charging, but while the OnePlus 5 might have a larger battery at 3300mAh compared to 3000mAh, the Galaxy S8 features wireless charging. Either phone should comfortably last you a day of average usage.

OnePlus 5 screen

Cameras are top of the list for most phone buyers and it's a close one to call for these two phones.

The Galaxy S8 has the best main camera here as even though the OnePlus 5 can take decent shots in daylight, you notice the difference in sharpness and detail when you look closer. The f/1.7 aperture of the S8 is one key reason why you'll notice the difference more in low light situations. It also has optical image stabilisation.

That said, it's impressive how well the OnePlus 5 keeps up in daylight considering the cheaper price. It also has a second rear camera offering a longer focal length which the Galaxy S8 doesn't have at all.

OnePlus 5 owners can take advantage of the 16Mp front camera for selfies but although the S8's is lower at 8Mp, it again has an f/1.7 aperture so can cope a lot better in low light.

You'll also like: Samsung Galaxy S9 rumours

OnePlus 5: Specs

  • Android Nougat 7.1.1
  • 5.5in 1920x1080 1080p Full HD AMOLED display, 401ppi
  • 2.45GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor
  • Adreno 540 graphics
  • 6/8GB RAM
  • 64/128GB storage
  • 16Mp rear camera, f/1.7, support for 4K video at 30fps
  • 16Mp front camera, f/2.0
  • 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth 5.0
  • 4G
  • Dual nano-SIM
  • NFC
  • 3,300mAh non-removable battery
  • 154.2x74.1x7.25mm
  • 153g
  • Android Nougat 7.1.1
  • 5.5in 1920x1080 1080p Full HD AMOLED display, 401ppi
  • 2.45GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor
  • Adreno 540 graphics
  • 6/8GB RAM
  • 64/128GB storage
  • 16Mp rear camera, f/1.7, support for 4K video at 30fps
  • 16Mp front camera, f/2.0
  • 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth 5.0
  • 4G
  • Dual nano-SIM
  • NFC
  • 3,300mAh non-removable battery
  • 154.2x74.1x7.25mm
  • 153g

OUR VERDICT

It's unsurprising that the much more expensive Galaxy S8 is overall the superior phone here with both top-notch design and specs. What's impressive though, is how well the OnePlus 5 competes at a much lower price point so you need to decide whether it's worth paying extra for the S8's screen, camera and other features like wireless charging and heart rate monitor.

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