OnePlus has finally unveiled the OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro, making it one of the best flagship series in 2021 that comes with powerful specs, excellent photography features, and outstanding processors.
The OnePlus line of flagship phones is genuinely competitive with the best Android phones of the year. Although most people in the US and France have high chances of getting a Samsung smartphone because of popularity, quality, and marketing. Fortunately, OnePlus has established itself as a brand that could be a major competitor to the mainstream. The OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro achieves that goal, although with few compromises.
As expected, the OnePlus 9 series sports a lot of improvements over the OnePlus 8 and OnePlus 8 Plus respectively, thanks to the new Hasselblad-tuned cameras. OnePlus line of flagship devices always come with a laundry list of top-tier specs, but what makes the OnePlus 9 series outstanding is how those specs translate into one of the best experience you can get on an Android device.
If you’re worried about the one to choose between the OnePlus 9 and the OnePlus 9 Pro, we’ve detailed the major differences between these two phones. With these features we’re going to break down, we hope you can figure out the best among them to choose. Let’s take a sneak preview of how these two flagship phones stack up against each other.
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OnePlus 9 vs OnePlus 9 Pro: Price in France and the US
- OnePlus 9: $729 | FRF 4,266
- OnePlus 9 Pro: $969 | FRF 5,670
The two phones have a significant price bump over their predecessors, but what is important is that there have been some improvements.
Prices for both phones start from $729 (about FRF 4,266) for the standard OnePlus 9’s 8GB of RAM /128GB model and move up to $829 (about FRF 4,850) for the bigger 8GB of RAM /256GB variant.
The OnePlus 9 Pro starts at $969 (about FRF 5,670) for the entry-level 8GB /128GB model and move up to $1,069 (about FRF 6,269) for the higher-end 12GB /256GB variant. There’s a staggering $240 difference between the two devices, but you’re getting a lot more phone features this time around.
OnePlus 9 vs OnePlus 9 Pro: Design
- OnePlus 9: 192g, 160 x 74.2 x 8.7 mm, IP68
- OnePlus 9 Pro: 197g, 163.2 x 73.6 x 8.7 mm, IP68
There were no spectacular design changes on both the OnePlus 9 and the OnePlus 9 Pro. The two phones are strongly built and tidy, but lacks the attractiveness of Samsung’s and Apple’s latest Galaxy S21 and iPhone 13 respectively.
However, the OnePlus 9 Pro is the most seamless and elegant phone from the company’s design cabinet to date. This is very obvious given its Pro status, unlike last year’s OnePlus 8 Pro which is very difficult to differentiate from the standard OnePlus 8. That might sound obvious how far OnePlus has come in build quality, although not comparable to Xiaomi or Samsung’s design, but still better than previous models.
Fortunately, OnePlus has shifted from the cheaper aluminium chassis but instead traded in a more flagship fibreglass-reinforced polymer frame. The glass on the front and rear curves into the thin aluminium rail on the edges that gave it a more balanced, solid, and beautiful look. The OnePlus 9 on the other hand has a plastic frame unlike the aluminium on the OnePlus 9 Pro.
Meanwhile, the two phones differentiate when it comes to finishes. The standard OnePlus 9 comes in Winter Mist, Arctic Sky, and Astral Black, while the OnePlus 9 Pro offers Morning Mist, Forest Green, and Stellar Black.
Due to the larger display, the OnePlus 9 Pro is 3mm taller than the OnePlus 9 and also 0.5mm narrower. This is because of the OnePlus 9’s smaller display and bigger size bezel. On the other hand, the OnePlus 9 Pro is slightly curved on the edges, giving it thinner bezels and a more premium appearance.
However, the two phones weigh almost the same with the OnePlus 9 coming at 192g while the OnePlus 9 Pro weighs 197g. Both phones have the OnePlus alert slider on the right-hand edge. This helps you to toggle between a ringtone, vibration, or fully silent the phone with a satisfying single click. This is one of the unique features of OnePlus smartphones and it still baffles us as to why other Android phone makers haven’t adopted that smart innovation.
- OnePlus 9: 6.55-inch AMOLED, 2400 x 1080 pixels, 120Hz, HDR10+, 1100nits
- OnePlus 9 Pro: 6.7-inch AMOLED, 3216 x 1440 pixels, 120Hz, HDR10+, 1300nits
The OnePlus 9 Pro has a better display over the standard OnePlus 9 model anytime, any day. It’s slightly bigger 6.7-inch compared to the OnePlus 9’s 6.55-inch screen. However, the two phones come with a 120Hz refresh rate on their AMOLED displays.
Meanwhile, the OnePlus 9 Pro has a sharper screen of 3216 x 1440 pixels (QHD) resolution, while the OnePlus 9’s display is stuck at 2400 x 1080 pixels (FHD) resolution. This gives the Pro model space for a more pixel-dense picture at 525ppi density, unlike the OnePlus 9’s 402ppi.
However, both phones’ displays are good in their way considering the price differences. The OnePlus 9 Pro is undoubtedly miles ahead as it has more enticing tech features. The LTPO technology can adjust the display’s frame rate from 1Hz to 120Jz depending on what’s being displayed. Also, there’s a Hypertouch feature that recognises finger touches faster and helps especially in intense gaming sessions.
Another shared feature of the OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro is the speedy in-display fingerprint scanner which has a very high accuracy compared to the one on the OnePlus 8 series.
OnePlus 9 vs OnePlus 9 Pro: Cameras
- Google Pixel 6: 48-MP wide, 50-MP ultra-wide, 2-MP monochrome, 16-MP (Selfie Camera)
- Google Pixel 6 Pro: 48-MP wide, 50-MP ultra-wide, 8-MP telephoto, 2-MP monochrome, 16-MP (Selfie Camera)
Last year’s OnePlus 8 Pro was the first phone from the company to feature an excellent camera. Fortunately, both the OnePlus 9 and the OnePlus 9 Pro continues in the same vein with the phones having 16-inch front-facing cameras. However, the major changes can be found in the back camera setup.
Built-in partnership with camera specialist Hasselblad, the OnePlus 9 comes with a 48MP main camera with the Sony IMX689 sensors, a 50MP ultra-wide sensor, and a 2MP monochrome lens.
Comparatively, the OnePlus 9 Pro takes things to the next level with a higher-end 48MP Sony IMX789 sensor with optical image stabilization. Other camera specs include a 50MP ultra-wide camera, a 2MP mono camera, and an 8MP telephoto camera. This gives the OnePlus 9 Pro an edge over its standard model, although they’re not supposed to be the same anyway.
However, in practical aspects, both phones aren’t going to disappoint in photography performance. Meanwhile, the OnePlus 9 Pro’s snaps are definitely astonishing with greater dynamic range, more details, and richer in colour than its standard counterpart. Also, the OnePlus 9 Pro’s Nightscape mode with the aid of OIS allows it to have clearer, crisper, and brighter night shots than its brother.
The OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro have a slow-motion video capture mode and can shoot up to 8k video at 30 frames per second (FPS).
Specs, Performance, and Software
- Google Pixel 6: Android 11, Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 chip, 8GB /12GB of RAM, 128GB /256GB
- Google Pixel 6 Pro: Android 11, Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 chip, 8GB /12GB of RAM, 128GB /256GB
So far, the OnePlus 9 Pro has had upper edge in every category, however, it’s on even with the standard OnePlus 9 when it comes to performance. The two phones are powered by the top 2021 Android Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 SoC chip.
This is paired by either 8GB or 12GB of RAM and 128GB or 256GB of built-in storage respectively depending on the model you’re going for. Just as expected, performance is similarly snappy and flawless between the two phones. Also, both the OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro supports sub-6 and mid-band 5G.
Given its top-tier specs, you can comfortably play high-end games like PUGB Mobile with settings tuned to the maximum on both devices without any stutter or lag. Gamings are helped by a large vapour chamber which provides heat dissipation support when under sustained load.
OnePlus is committed to two years of major OS updates which put it behind the likes of Xiaomi, Google and Samsung. OnePlus’s Oxygen 12 OS is paired with Android 11 which is upgradable to Android 12.
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OnePlus 9 vs OnePlus 9 Pro: Battery
- Google Pixel 6: 4,500mAh, 65W fast charging, 15W wireless fast charging
- Google Pixel 6 Pro: 4,500mAh, 65W fast charging, 50W wireless fast charging
Both phones benefit from dual-cell 4500mAh batteries which results in them having similar weights despite being different smartphones.
From a practical perspective, this similar battery is supposed to worry potential OnePlus 9 Pro buyers as it has a bigger, crisper, and sharper display to cater for. However, the inclusion of LTPO screen technology helps to reduce power consumption.
Meanwhile, both phones come with a Warp Charge 65T in the box which is a huge blow to both Samsung and Apple. This power brick will charge the phone from empty to full battery in just 28 minutes (as advertised). The OnePlus 9 Pro supports fast wireless charging although you’ll need to buy a Warp Charge 50W charger from OnePlus which will power the phone from 1% to 100% in just 43 minutes. On the other hand, the standard OnePlus 9 only has 15W wireless charging.
OnePlus has once again built two excellent compelling devices in the OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro. Given the upgrades across the two phones, you can’t really go wrong with either.
In the OnePlus 9 Pro is a genuine flagship contender with outstanding features and refined specifications that could rival the likes of Samsung Galaxy S21 and Apple iPhone 12 despite offering at a lesser price. Undoubtedly, the OnePlus 9 Pro is the better phone of the two, thanks to its premium design, excellent display, and stepped up camera.
Whichever model you go for, you’re without doubt going to have one of the best Android smartphones that’ll give you great value for your money.