Another year, another selfie-centric smartphone from OPPO. Only this time, they’re not calling it a Selfie Expert, probably because it doesn’t bear the F1 badge. Instead, OPPO Malaysia is shifting the focus onto their new R9s smartphone to the 16-megapixel primary camera at the back.
But, when the R9s also comes with a 16MP selfie shooter up front, you’re gonna wanna take some selfies too.
We saw this smartphone launch back in October 2016 alongside its bigger brother, the R9s Plus. Unfortunately for the Malaysian market, this local launch is only about the smaller R9s, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
OPPO’s R9s comes featuring an octa-core Snapdragon 625 processor, which in my past testing, I’ve found to be rather frugal. In true OPPO fashion, this processor is mated to 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage. Since you’re taking 16MP stills, OPPO is also giving you the option to expand that storage via a microSD card for up to an additional 128GB of space. In the software department, it will be running on Android 6.0 Marshmallow with OPPO’s ColorOS 3.0 skin on top.
Since it’s the smaller of the R9s duo, it has a 5.5-inch Full HD display in front that’s tucked under the protective arm of Corning’s Gorilla Glass 5. Keeping everything powered is a 3,010 mAh battery that has support for OPPO’s excellent VOOC Flash Charge fast-charging technology which is a nice touch. Although this is a dual-SIM smartphone, the second SIM shares its slot with the microSD card so you’ll have to pick one over the other.
The star of OPPO’s new phone, however, lies in the device’s camera. Mentioned earlier, it comes with a pair of 16-megapixel cameras — one in front and one at the back. The front selfie shooter comes with an f/2.0 aperture camera and lets you take selfies with OPPO’s screen flash feature too.
At the back, however, OPPO takes things up to 11. The primary 16MP shooter is a Sony IMX398 1/2.8-inch sensor with a fast f/1.7 aperture lens that OPPO says captures 40% more light than OPPO’s previous cameras. For faster focusing, the R9s also comes with Dual PDAF focusing technology which also supposedly focuses 40% faster than regular PDAF. This is because, with Dual PDAF, they’re essentially doubling the area of the pixel’s sensor array that’s equipped with the photodiodes necessary for phase detection autofocus.
OPPO’s also cleaned up the smartphone’s aesthetics this time around. At first glance, the shape and overall look bears a striking resemblance to previous R9 and F1 smartphones, a closer look reveals that the antenna lines are now less prominent on the new models. Instead of using one thick line, OPPO uses a “six-string” design that uses six thinner lines.
Although this is not the first time an R9 smartphone has made it to our shores, it is the first time OPPO has decided to retain the R9 badge. The previous R9 was rebranded here to become the F1 Plus which continued OPPO’s F1 “selfie-expert” brand.
If this sleek metal smartphone has caught your eye, you’ll be happy to know that it will be priced at RM1,798 here in Malaysia and can be bought at all 1,200 OPPO sales points across Malaysia and online at the OPPO Store from the 14th of January onwards. However, pre-orders for the smartphone will begin today (though it actually began two days ago with the “blind pre-order”) until the 13th of January 2017 at the OPPO Store. Customers who pre-order will get a free gift. It will come in two colours: Gold and Rose Gold.
So this, or Samsung’s newly launched Galaxy A (2017)? Let me know in the comments below!