The OnePlus One is a significant milestone in the mobile industry as it's the first smartphone to officially run the community driven CyanogenMod out the box.

CyanogenMod has been available for Android devices for a while, but it required a certain level of technical smarts to get it on a handset and that's something many consumers simply couldn't be bothered with.

The process was made simpler with the arrival of the Oppo N1 which plays nicely with CyanogenMod and thus allowing its owners to boot the alternative build of Android onto it.
Any worries about installing a new operating system on your handset, and potentially voiding your warranty, have been put to rest with the OnePlus One as it's already running the modified version of Android 4.4.2 KitKat.

With a price tag of $299, £229 (around AU$320) for the 16GB "Silk White" version it's easy to dismiss the OnePlus One as another generic mid-range Android handset destined to be lost in the noise.

A 64GB version will also be available in "Sandstone Black" and is priced at a still very reasonable $349, £269 (around AU$375).
OnePlus One review
That sort of thinking would be unwise though, as one quick scan of the spec list for the One tells a very different story.

The Chinese manufacturer has stuffed the OnePlus One full of impressive components, from the 2.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor, 3GB of RAM and Adreno 330 GPU to the 13MP rear snapper and full HD display.

So while the OnePlus One will set you back less than the well priced Google Nexus 5, in terms of specs it's lining up against the Samsung Galaxy S5, HTC One M8 and Sony Xperia Z2. These are phones double its price.
OnePlus One review
It left me wondering where corners had been cut and concessions made.

And to be honest I'm still wondering how OnePlus has managed to produce such a well specced, low cost device as my brief hands on time with the device didn't reveal any obvious short comings.

That full HD display is 5.5 inches in size, which means the OnePlus One is larger than its flagship competition, although with dimensions of 152.9 x 75.9 x 8.9mm it's only marginally bigger than the 5.2-inch Xperia Z2.
OnePlus One review
There's no premium metal body in play - which is hardly a surprise considering the price - and even though there's a noticeably plastic finish I found the OnePlus One felt nicer than the Galaxy S5, not to mention more solid too.

The plastic frame means OnePlus has been able to keep the weight of the One down, and at 160g it matches the One M8 on the scales, while showing up the 163g Xperia Z2.

To the right you'll find the power/lock key falls nicely under your finger or thumb, while on the left there's a volume rocker switch just below a tray for a microSIM.
OnePlus One review
OnePlus has told TechRadar that the final production model of the One will have a slightly elongated volume switch, although I still found the one on my unit to be perfectly serviceable.

It is noticeably shorter than the volume switch on the Galaxy S5, but actually longer than the one of the Z2 - although Sony has raised each end to make it easier to hit.

You get a headphone jack on top, while on the base there's a centralized microUSB port flanked by two speaker grills in a setup which is reminiscent of the bottom of the LG G2.
OnePlus One review
Overall build quality felt pretty good, but I've been told that there will be subtle improvements to the build quality in the final units - although for now it's not clear what those improvements will be.

In terms of bezel surrounding the 5.5-inch full HD display the OnePlus One doesn't go too heavy, opting to have the menu, home and back Android navigation keys below instead of on screen.

The sheer length of the OnePlus One makes it a little tricky to reach all areas of the screen during one handed operation and I found I had to shuffle the device to reach the navigation keys - or employ my other hand to steady the ship.
OnePlus One review
With a resolution of 1920 x 1080 the 5.5-inch screen delivers an impressively sharp 401ppi.
While that may not be as defined as its Samsung, HTC and Sony rivals the display on the OnePlus One still offers up a decent viewing experience.

Images and text appear crisp and clear, although colours are a little more muted - not majorly so, but side by side there is a difference between the One and it's higher priced competition.

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