Android Phone Showdown: How OnePlus 5 Sizes Up With Galaxy S8, HTC U11

1 - Android Phone Showdown: How OnePlus 5 Sizes Up With Galaxy S8, HTC U11
2 - All Have Different Design Concepts
3 - All Run on Snapdragon 835 Processor
4 - Display Choices to Consider
5 - A Camera Comparison
6 - Storage and RAM Matter
7 - Android Nougat Is Inside All Three
8 - Different Software Experiences to Consider
9 - A Battery Comparison
10 - The Extras Could Make the Difference
11 - Will It Come Down to Pricing?
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Android Phone Showdown: How OnePlus 5 Sizes Up With Galaxy S8, HTC U11

The competition for the top Android smartphone just got another entrant. Earlier this month, the long-awaited OnePlus 5 finally made its debut, providing customers with an alternative to other high-end handsets on the market. Among the phones the OnePlus 5 is vying with for Android customers who want a powerful handset and don’t mind paying a premium to get it are the popular Samsung Galaxy S8 (and Galaxy S8+) and HTC U11. Like those three handsets, the OnePlus 5 comes with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835. But there are enough differences to make it difficult for some customers to choose which is best for their needs. This eWEEK slide show digs into those differences and helps users find the best smartphone among the Android market’s top devices.

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All Have Different Design Concepts

The Samsung Galaxy S8, OnePlus 5 and the HTC U11 all take a different tack on design. Samsung’s handset is arguably the most future-focused, offering a curved screen and no physical home button, while the HTC U11 and OnePlus 5 have more traditional designs, with bezels all around and a home button under the display. If it’s a new-age look and feel you want, then the Galaxy S8 is the Android smartphone for you.

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All Run on Snapdragon 835 Processor

Those looking to choose the handset with the most power won’t find a big difference among these three. All three devices run on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835. However, since they’re all running different software and rely on different components, mileage may vary. It’s a good idea, then, to compare benchmark scores over at GeekBench to see which might deliver the most power.

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Display Choices to Consider

There are several factors to consider when it comes down to the Android devices’ screens. Samsung’s Galaxy S8 comes with a 5.8-inch curved display, and the Galaxy S8+ has a 6.2-inch screen, while both the HTC U11 and the OnePlus 5 ship with a 5.5-inch flat screen. However, both Samsung’s and HTC’s models have quad-HD resolutions, while the OnePlus 5 has a full-HD screen.

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A Camera Comparison

If the camera is a big selling point, the OnePlus has the advantage. It has a dual-lens rear-facing camera, one of which delivers wide-angle shots and has a 16-megapixel sensor. The other, a telephoto lens, has 20 megapixels. Plus, it can shoot in 4K. Samsung’s Galaxy S8 line, meanwhile, comes with a single-lens camera with a 12-megapixel sensor. It, too, can record in 4K. HTC’s U11 similarly tops out at 12 megapixels and can record in 4K.

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Storage and RAM Matter

Both the HTC U11 and Samsung’s Galaxy S8 line come with 64GB of storage and 4GB of RAM, putting them decidedly in the middle of the high-end market. But not the OnePlus 5, which comes with up to 128GB of onboard storage. Better yet, customers can choose options with up to 8GB of memory.

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Android Nougat Is Inside All Three

Since these are all high-end handsets, it’s no surprise that they all come with the latest Android operating system, Nougat. However, it’s worth noting that while Samsung’s Galaxy S8 handsets ship with Android 7.0, HTC’s U11 has the slightly newer Android 7.1. OnePlus says that its smartphone has Nougat, but it hasn’t revealed which version.

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Different Software Experiences to Consider

Despite running the same operating system, the Galaxy S8, OnePlus 5 and HTC U11 all come with much different software experiences. That’s because all three companies have designed skins for the platform that come with their own apps. Which of those platforms will be best depends on the customer, so be sure to analyze them all before choosing one over the other.

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A Battery Comparison

Another important consideration is battery life, and all three phones do well in this area. Samsung’s Galaxy S8 comes with a 3,000mAh battery pack that can last up to 20 hours during continuous talk time. That jumps to 24 hours of talk time for its Galaxy S8+, which has a 3,500mAh pack. The HTC U11 has a 3,000mAh battery that can last 24.5 hours on a single charge during talk time. OnePlus doesn’t share an exact time on its site, but does say that its Dash Charge feature will allow users to charge their batteries far more quickly than on any other device.

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The Extras Could Make the Difference

Each device has unique features that may make a difference when choosing among them. The OnePlus 5, for instance, comes from a boutique vendor in China and is available unlocked, allowing users to run it on dozens of networks around the world. The HTC U11 has an Edge Sense feature that will allow users to interact with its onboard software by just squeezing its sides. And Samsung’s Galaxy S8 runs the new Bixby virtual personal assistant, providing far more functionality than most competitors.

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Will It Come Down to Pricing?

For some folks, pricing might rule the day. If that’s the case, the OnePlus 5 will win handily with a starting price of $479. In comparison, Samsung’s Galaxy S8 goes for $750 and the Galaxy S8+ is on sale for $850. HTC’s U11 will set customers back $649. All of the handsets in this roundup can run on any major U.S. carrier.