Hands on with OPPO R5: The thinnest smartphone in the market

I thought the iPhone 6 was thin when it released, same goes for the 5.5mm thick Gionee Elife S5.5 but there is something out there that takes the thickness of the thinnest smartphone available right now and laughs at it. The OPPO R5 is one of the company’s latest smartphones that takes thickness (or thinness) to a completely different level. The 4.85mm thin phone may well set the limit to how thin a smartphone can get before making substantial sacrifices .

Disclaimer: We got our hands on a pre production unit of the R5, therefore there may be some changes made by the time the actual retail model rolls. 

Without wasting much time, let’s talk about the main attraction of the OPPO R5, its 4.85mm profile. This measurement officially makes the OPPO R5 the thinnest smartphone in the world by a long shot. However, contrary to my initial beliefs, the R5 is not light and flimsy feeling. The phone has a good amount of heft to it which definitely makes it feel substantial when holding it. The hand polished steel build and flat sides also help to make this device feel secure and great in the hand. 

This usually is the case with premium high end smartphones these days, great design, awesome build etc. What really distinguishes the OPPO R5 from the rest of the market is the feeling you get the moment you lift it up. The R5 is unbelievably thin! Even though you prepare yourself to experience the device’s build, it still astound you whenever you pick it up. 

The awe inspiring thinness of the phone does have a few drawbacks; making a device this thin meant that the headphone jack had to be removed. The camera module also is slightly raised on the back. Neither of these are serious issues, the camera bump does not cause the phone to rock on flat surfaces and OPPO provides the O-Music accessory with the R5 which allows you to connect your headphones to the phone via the micro USB port. The O-Click functions as media controls too and even acts as a camera shutter button. 

Building this thin usually leads to some temperature management issues. OPPO added some phase shifting materials inside the phone which draw out heat allowing for quick, widespread cooling. In our short time with the device, the phone cooled quickly after a temperature rise due to intense use. We will get back to you on this after the full review.

The R5 has a 5.2 inch FullHD AMOLED display with a pixel density of 423 pixels per inch. The AMOLED panel leads to very deep true blacks and great viewing angles. The high resolution especially makes Color OS pop and look sharp. 

Speaking of the software, we have Android 4.4.4 KitKat with Color OS 2.0 on top. With well specced KitKat devices, smooth performance is a given. What we enjoyed was the new rendition of Color OS. Color OS 2.0 looks very nice and polished. Unlike other heavy skins, lag is absent and the transitions and graphical changes look excellent.

 The camera is a 13 megapixel Sony Exmor IMX214 BSI sensor and does a really great job. Images taken in good lighting obviously look clear and sharp and low light performance is decent too. OPPO did a great job with the camera interface, instead of packing in every single feature, they give the option to download desired features. One of my personal favourites is the GIF mode which allows you to capture GIFs.

VOOC fast charging makes a return to the R5 and promises 0%-75% in just 30 minutes. We are yet to test this out ourselves so stay tuned for our full review.

The OPPO R5 is a gorgeous device. It offers a one of a kind in hand experience that no other device in the market can provide, Moreover, OPPO questions the norms of the smartphone world by building thinner than ever before and accommodating for the sacrifices that ensue. This not only shows the company’s drive to constantly work to stand out of the crowd but also demonstrates their willingness to think and execute outside of the box. The R5 will be available soon and will retail for $499.

Thanks for your love and support, visit Techetron again for the full review.

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