Text by Sadaf Shaikh. GIF by Debarati Sanyal
Last week, when OnePlus announced that it was going to introduce a Thunder Purple variant for One Plus 6T it was reserved for loyalists in China. On Monday, however, the phone manufacturers declared that the new variant would be made available to users in the U.S. and India on October 15th. Isn’t it nice when products (and hopefully movies, in the future) release at the same time in our country as they do in the rest of the world?
We’ve already feasted our eyes on the OnePlus 6T that launched in India late last month so we are well aware of the two variants it is currently available in — the Midnight Black which had a solid black case and the Mirror Black which has a reflective surface. While it might be sneaky of OnePlus to introduce a new variant so close on the heels of its previous launch, you have to admit its a brilliant marketing ploy. If you haven’t updated your One Plus handset from the OnePlus 6 Red already, you can rest assured that the Thunder Purple will seal the deal.
OnePlus has a history of latching on to relevant pop culture trends to make their phones resonate with today’s generation as well as the one before them. That would explain why they chose to release an Avengers limited edition that reeled the millennials in as well as a Star Wars edition that was perfectly timed to coincide with the release of The Last Jedi. The Thunder Purple, however, takes on a more regal and ominous tone with the colour being inspired by how the sky looks at dusk when lightning strikes. Almost makes you think of Thor banging his hammer on the anvil to produce brilliant flashes of lightning and looking pleased with his handiwork when he inspects the glorious aubergine sky.
Interestingly, the gradient fades from black to purple when you move it this way and that and highlights the depth of colour on the phone. And if you know where to look for it, the faint S curve — that we’ve seen on the other OnePlus 6T variants — also appears on the ThunderPurple. Founder and CEO Pete Lau revealed that the design team experimented extensively to test how light interacted with the colours in order to give people what might just be their most beautiful design yet. More importantly, the new all-glass back is protected by Corning’s Gorilla Glass 5 so the phone is impervious to multiple drops, which makes sense when you are reluctant to cover up a colour as gorgeous as this one. Special props to the designers for giving the phone an illusion of being slick due to its shiny eggplant colour but retaining the trademark texture that OnePlus phones have come to be associated; one that safeguards it against constant slippage from the users’ hands.
In other aspects, the Thunder Purple variant is similar to the Midnight Black and Mirror Black except the former is equipped with 8GB of RAM with 128GB of storage while the latter provides you with three options — the base model with 6GB RAM+128GB ROM, the 8GB RAM+128GB model and the 8GB RAM+256GB ROM model, all at varying price points.
Exploring the general specs of the OnePlus 6T that comes barely six months after the OnePlus 6 (launched in May), we note that it comes with a 6.41-inch Optic AMOLED display at the front with a resolution of 2340×1080. The phone manufacturers have also upgraded the unlock option; instead of placing your thumb on a fingerprint button or the back of the phone, the OnePlus 6T has a biometric scanner built right into the bottom third of its display. A fingerprint icon pops up when you move the phone and a logo lights up when you place your thumb under it, getting the screen to unlock.
OnePlus has retained the powerhouse found inside the OnePlus 6 in the form of the octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, paired with 6GB of RAM in the 128GB variant and 8GB in the 256GB variant. There is one catch though, the OnePlus 6T does not come with expandable storage nor a 512GB variant this time, so you might have to wait for the next upgrade to be able to have ‘never-run-out-of-storage’ bragging rights. There’s now a dedicated ‘recents’ gesture that allows you quicker access to view your recent apps. My only bone of contention is that the OnePlus 6T has eliminated the headphone jack—so you’re left with either Type-C or Bluetooth sound accessories. The Type-C Bullets do not ship with the phone and your wallet will have to incur an extra damage of INR 1,499 to get one of them.
And now for the extreme OnePlus fanatics…
The OnePlus Travel Backpack that launched alongside the OnePlus Five has now got a cool upgrade in the form of the Explorer Backpack that comes in Slate Black and Morandi Green. The new bag is definitely sleeker and more stylish than its predecessor and could be looked at as one of OnePlus’ endeavours to step into a premium price bracket with the bag being priced at INR 4,990.
True to its name, the Explorer backpack comes with a large serving of side-access pockets — one at the front, where you can stash your phone and headphones, the laptop compartment at the back, which is also accessible from the side, and a mini side pocket designed to hide away important items. Bonus slot, there’s a vented pocket right at the front designed to fit an umbrella or a large bottle.
I have to say that I’m partial towards the Slate Black version because it’s the kind of black that reminds you of the sky on a starless night. Its exterior is made of water-repellent Cordura, and the zipper exposed to the elements also has a water-resistant seal around. It is tear-resistant with exceptional strength and is perfect for anyone who spends a considerable amount of time trekking outdoors or simply prefers the durability of a good-quality bag for daily use.
The Explorer Backpack can be purchased only by invite and will retail exclusively on oneplus.in October 20, 2018 onwards