OnePlus added a slew of new products in its 2023 lineup of phones, TVs, earphones, and even a tablet. The OnePlus 11 was inarguably the star of the show, proclaiming to bring back the greatness that the company was once known for.
While at $699 the OnePlus 11 is a fantastic deal rivaling the likes of other $900 to $1000 phones, Indian consumers who have always been one of OnePlus’ largest target audiences were treated with an even more aggressively priced OnePlus 11R, and we feel it is a better buy than the more expensive OnePlus 11. Here’s why.
1. Noticeable Price Gap
People reminiscing about the old OnePlus flagships might actually find the 11R a more alluring purchase. Even though the OnePlus 11 contests other flagships at a reasonable price tag of $700 (56,999 INR), the 11R simply offers more bang for the buck at around $490 (39,000 INR).
Even with such a significant price gap, the 11R maintains its presence as a budget flagship thanks to its still-powerful internals and a very similar experience as you’ll find further on.
2. Similar Design
Love it or hate it, the infamous stovetop design of the OnePlus 10 Pro has been carried over to the 11 series of phones. At the very least, this gives OnePlus’ phones a sense of identity and separates them from the plethora of other similar-looking rectangular slabs.
Visually, both phones look indistinguishable at first glance. With a few downgrades like a plastic build over metal and glass, slightly bigger bezels all around, and the omission of the Hasselblad branding, the OnePlus 11R feels just as modern as its much more expensive elder sibling. Both phones also come with the OnePlus signature alert slider.
3. An Older Chip, but Still Very Powerful
Powering the OnePlus 11R is the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 chipset, which is only half a generation older than what’s inside the OnePlus 11. Pair that with up to 16GB of RAM and a lower-resolution display, you’d be hard-pressed to find any performance difference between the two phones outside synthetic benchmarks.
The more premium OnePlus 11 does have a newer 8 Gen 2 chipset, and faster UFS 4.0 storage, but given the price difference and the relevancy of the 8+ Gen 1 processor, the 11R is highly capable of crushing any task or game you throw at it.
4. Still a Flagship-Grade Display
The display on the OnePlus 11R is a slight downgrade, but only in terms of resolution—which is a metric on phones that matters less given their relatively small form factors. The 11R still has a big and vibrant 1080p 120 Hz AMOLED display that can dynamically switch refresh rates from 40 to 120 Hz for higher efficiency.
You’ll obviously be getting a media powerhouse if you opt for the more expensive OnePlus 11. While the sharper 2K display with support for Dolby Vision on the OnePlus 11 is nice to have, for most people, the display on the 11R is enough of a wow factor.
5. Better Battery Life
For years OnePlus has been leading the industry when it comes to charging technology. Both the OnePlus 11R and 11 have a mammoth 5000 mAh battery with support of up to 100W SuperVooc charging. Add to that the fact that OnePlus phones come with a beefy adapter and a high-quality charging cable in the box.
Theoretically, both phones should have a similar battery experience, and when it comes to charging, they indeed do. However, given the slightly less demanding internals and a lower resolution display of the 11R, you could expect a slightly better battery backup out of the phone.
On top of that, OnePlus removed wireless charging from its top-of-the-line flagship this year, giving the 11 no real edge over its cheaper alternative in this department.
6. Same Software Experience
OnePlus has not had the best few years when it comes to the software experience on its phones. For better or for worse, OxygenOS 13 is now basically ColorOS without all the bloatware. No matter which OnePlus phone you choose to buy, you’ll end up with the same software experience, which is also the case with the OnePlus 11 and the 11R.
Both phones benefit from OxygenOS’ extensive feature list but also have the same annoyances. Unlike other Android OEMs that reserve certain features to their premium set of devices, by going with a cheaper OnePlus phone, you wouldn’t be missing out on any software goodies.
The company confirmed that both phones will receive four years of major software and five years of security patch updates too. Given the company’s recent track record of swift software updates, you’ll be one of the first to enjoy new Android features, maybe only right behind Google and Samsung flagships.
You Just Can’t Go Wrong With the OnePlus 11R
Given the considerable price difference for a very similar experience, the OnePlus 11R offers better value than the regular 11. For gamers and power users alike, the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 has proven to be a highly capable chipset and should suffice for years to come.
If, however, you do want the absolute best that the company has to offer, the OnePlus 11 still has an impressive feature list that might be worth the extra two hundred bucks.