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OPPO F3 Plus REVIEW – From Selfie to Groufie Expert

OPPO has never been shy about promoting itself as a selfie-centric brand, and this time the OPPO F3 Plus might be its biggest device ever. This 6-inch smartphone packed with powerful specs appears to bring a lot of premiere design and functionality. These both serve as an effective foundation upon which its signature dual front-facing camera stands. But the question that will always follow an OPPO device still stands: are the cameras alone enough to warrant the price tag?

As the clear successor to the F1 Plus, the OPPO F3 Plus already impresses just by the box packaging alone. It takes a white overall design with shimmering gold font. Of course, the green OPPO logo doesn’t miss a beat and stands out. Upon opening it, we get:

  • OPPO F3 Plus unit (1 pc.)
  • Micro-USB Charging Cable (1 pc.)
  • Travel Charger (1 pc.)
  • Clear Jelly Case (1 pc.)
  • Quick Guide (1 pc.)
  • Important Information Guide (1 pc.)

Design and Construction

Design-wise, the F3 Plus actually looks like an iPhone, especially with its minimal design. When I say minimal, of course I mean that by default, it looks like there’s only the white bezels, and the white button. The look is clean and simple. In addition, OPPO spreads the features of the phone appropriately. For example, on top of the display are the earpiece, front sensors, and the two front cameras. I cannot stress how important this top part is, since this is where we’ll find the dual-lens, Selfie Expert, 120-degree selfie/groufie camera. Clocking in at 16-megapixels for one lens, and 8-megapixels for the wide angle lens, users may look forward to taking solo shots in high-quality, or group shots where nobody is excluded. To balance this all out, the bottom of the display contain the capacitive buttons, flanking the middle fingerprint scanner.

Furthermore, the left-hand side of the phone houses the power/lock button, plus the hybrid card tray that houses two Nano-SIM cards and a microSD card. Inversely, the right-hand side features the volume buttons, which means that you won’t accidentally lock your phone if you’re just using a single hand. All ports situate themselves at the bottom, primarily the headphone port, the micro-USB port, and the speaker grills. My only contention, really, is why they chose to stay with a micro-USB instead of a USB-C. Last but not least, the back portion of the device features the dual-tone LED flash alongside the main camera module. Interestingly, this also mimics the design of the iPhone, particularly the iPhone 6.

For now, I’ll admit that while the entire feel of the handset isn’t anything utterly original, I also don’t see the need for OPPO to change anything. To drastically alter the appearance of the F3 series would equate to alienating their current fanbase.

OS, Apps, and UI

For this iteration of the OPPO flagship, the ColorOS skin for the Android remains.  However, when I think about it, this setup looks almost exactly the same as the OS for the OPPO F1s. This simply means that they didn’t change much for the F3 Plus, which could honestly be both good and bad, depending on the audience.  If it’s someone hoping for something new from OPPO, they’re sore out of luck. On the flipside, if it’s someone who just wants an upgrade to their OPPO phone, the familiarity feels rewarding.

Upon opening the device, the Google apps stand ready for use, already pre-installed. Additionally, a few system apps and tools plus Facebook appear almost immediately, which feels very handy. Overall, the original 64GB internal storage cuts down to a usable storage space of 52.27GB. Honestly, not a bad  number.

Now let’s get into the true draw of the OPPO F3 Plus, the 120-degree wide angle, dual lens, beautification-focused, 16-megapixel (plus 8-megapixel wide angle lens) Selfie camera. With the amount of marketing done to promote this feature, we might actually need to forget about the rest of the specs and see if the camera alone warrants the price tag.

Camera

Any OPPO phone feels incomplete without a great camera, and critics often tout this as the brand’s biggest draw.

First of all, the camera launcher program feels easy thanks in part to the ColorOS setup. OPPO fans that already familiarized themselves with the ColorOS skin of past OPPO phones should feel right at home. What should feel new, however, is the dual-camera selfie camera. Supposedly, it enables consumers to take great selfies and wide groufies. Technology-wise, the F3 line accomplishes this by using one normal lens and one wide-angle lens.

The main selfie shooter measures at 16-megapixels, while the wide-angle lens is an 8-megapixel camera. As with prior models, any selfies taken by the main camera look fantastic, with crisp definition and clear, bright colors. I’d even say that there’s a slight bokeh effect due to the large lens. On the other hand, the wide-angle lens doesn’t fare as well, but it does deliver in terms of taking wide groufies. The field of vision looks super wide, and at times it looked kinda like a panoramic shot.

But don’t discount the rear camera, though. This 16-megapixel sensor with f/1.7 aperture and dual PDAF offers fast focusing abilities in daylight. Any still photos taken with this camera look sharp, with colors that feel alive. In summation, OPPO pulls off the difficult feat of delivering something new and satisfying in terms of camera setups. Neither the rear nor the front camera feel inferior, and both offer the best camera tech in their price range. If you need a phone whose rear and front cameras produce beautiful output, this should be one of your primary choices.

  

 

Performance and Benchmarks

This modern OPPO phone runs on a Qualcomm midranger, the Snapdragon 653. Despite carrying the title of ‘midrange chipset’, it still impresses with an octacore processor running at 1.9GHz. That’s almost about as fast as some laptops. For graphics, we’re looking at an Adreno 510 GPU, supported by 4GB LPDDR4 RAM.

In terms of practical use, this specs setup blows away almost all challenges. The apps open, close, and transition with no lag whatsoever, and the ColorOS helps by maximizing the RAM. It even manages to outperform other Android skins that eat too much RAM, like stock Google and MIUI. Thus, making the OPPO F3 Plus a dedicated gaming handheld is indeed feasible. For this particular test, we ran Modern Combat 5 and Dead Trigger 2. Both games ran smoothly, and their visuals looked great on the F3 Plus’ wide screen.

Benchmark-wise, we got the following numbers:

  • AnTuTu – 92225
  • Vellamo – 3345 (Multicore), 3032 (Metal), 2019 (Chrome Browser – Partial)
  • Quadrant Standard – 46648
  • 3DMark – 952 (Sling Shot Extreme)

Battery Life

Running a midranger phone with a strong camera setup on a 4,000mAh battery sounds like it would yield an average lifespan. Fortunately, the OPPO F3 Plus features VOOC-based fast-charging technology.  Not only that, but as mentioned in the Performance section, OPPO designed this phone to be efficient in various ways. Who knew that it would include battery life!  With our standard test, we got around 12 hours, with light to moderate use (texts, some browsing, some audio streaming).  For the video loop test, on the other hand, we were able to net about 12 hours as well.  If you’re charging from zero, on the other hand, the included travel charger will fill it in just a bit over an hour. Fast-charging, long-lasting, indeed.

Conclusion

At the start of the review, we asked if the advanced camera setup alone justified the pricing of PHP 23,990. The simple answer: yes, it does.  The long answer: OPPO squeezes performance and efficiency out of every component of this smartphone, making sure that each feature performs and meets expectations (or exceeds it). In turn, this maximized performance acts as solid support for a camera setup that seems to only get better and better with each iteration from OPPO. A prime example of this are the ‘midrange’ specs that still manage to feel premium, especially in terms of app speed and gaming capabilities.

I think what OPPO has done here with the F3 Plus is that they’ve made sure that no part of the phone falls behind. Yes, the focus is on the dual-lens selfie camera, but side features like the processor, the RAM, and the OS skin don’t feel cheap.   In fact, they act as a major complement to the selfie camera and the main shooter. Thus, to the common consumer, it truly seems like they’re holding a premium flagship.

Related: OPPO F3 Review

POSITIVES

  • ColorOS feels efficient and is easy to use
  • The front and rear cameras exceed expectations and produce great images
  • The battery life lasts long and charges fast
  • Each part of the OPPO F3 Plus feels optimized
  • Lag-free games and fast-loading apps

NEGATIVES

  • Might be a little too similar to an Apple iPhone
  • micro-USB port instead of modern USB-C

OPPO F3 Plus Specs

OSColorOS 3.0, based on Android 6.0
ProcessorQualcomm MSM8976 Pro Octa-core, Adreno 510 GPU
Memory4GB
Display6.0 inches IPS TFT Full HD (1920 by 1080 pixels), Gorilla Glass 5
Storage
CameraRear: 16-megapixel tf/1.7 Dual Tone LED Flash, Front: 8MP F/2.0 180degree wide-angle n
SIMDual Nano-SIM Cards nOr Nano-SIM Card and microSD Card
Battery4000 mAh (Non-removable)
ColorGold, Black
DImensions163.63 mm x 80.8 mm x 7.35 mmn
WeightAbout 185g
FrequenciestGSM: 850/900/1800/1900MHznWCDMA: 850/900/1700/1900/2100MHznFDD-LTE: Bands 1/2/3/4/5/7/8/20/28/ nTD-LTE: Bands 38/39/40/41
GPSSupported
Bluetooth4.1
WiFi2.4/5GHz 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
SensorsDistance sensor, Light sensor, G-sensor, E-compass, Gyro-Sensor
OthersVOOC fast charging, Camera shoots 4K videos

 

  

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