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Innovation In Smartphones Is Dead! Let’s Talk About The Oppo Find X

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The 2008 VMA’s will be forever etched in history because of Kanye West’s moment of madness. The Hip-Hop star interrupted Taylor Swift during her acceptance speech for her Video of the Year award and said:

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‘Yo Taylor, I’m really happy for you and Imma’ let you finish but Beyonce had one of the best videos of all time…’

The backlash that befell Mr West after this incident is known and a quick google will initiate those in the dark. Even Obama berated Kanye and called him a ‘jackass.’

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Anyway you’re probably wondering what this has to do with the Oppo Find X…

Deja vu

Just after the Oppo Find X was revealed I couldn’t help but feel like someone at the unveiling event should have taken the mic and said ‘Oppo, I’m really happy for you and imma’ let you finish but it seems you guys are running out of ideas…’

The Find X is a clear illustration of where smartphones are and also a reflection of the media that is covering these devices. It seems the media is now filled with fans rather than people who actually help consumers to make conscious choices.

A case of the pyrrhic victory?

A Pyrrhic victory is a victory that inflicts such a devastating toll on the victor that it is tantamount to defeat. That’s all I see when I look at the Oppo Find X.

The compromises that Oppo makes in it’s quest to achieve a bezel-less design are quite baffling to say the least and I’m really failing to understand what the hype really is about this phone.

To begin with the phone isn’t even bezel-less and is being marketed as having a 92.25% screen to body ratio. Just over a week ago, the Vivo Nex S was hailed as having a 91.24% screen to body ratio (93.8% on Oppo’s website).

The Android market has always been obsessed with chasing numbers but this seems like it’s being ratcheted up a notch (no pun intended) to push sales at a time where innovation in the smartphone field is really dyring up.

Let’s take a look at the Oppo X and try understand what the fuss is about

The Oppo Find X makes multiple compromises in order to achieve this so-called futuristic look. Unfathomable compromises to add insult to injury…

Sliding camera

Let’s talk about that sliding camera that has everyone losing their mind and acting as if this is the greatest idea seen in smartphone engineering. The phone has no fingerprint sensor and it unlocks via an iPhone X-like facial recognition. What this means is every time you want to unlock your phone, you have to wait for the camera to slide up. The wait itself isn’t necessarily a problem because apparently the camera only takes 0.5 seconds to pop-up. Obviously it will take longer than a fingerprint scanner but those are not deal-breakers really.

But the question I pose to you is how many times do you unlock your smartphone a day? Most people will answer a lot, some will answer not that much but regardless this is a moving part that’s built into your phone and it will be interesting to see how long the sliding motor will stay intact.

At some point however this mechanism will fall apart and the day it does malfunction you won’t be able to unlock your phone. But look on the bright-side you’ll still have a bezel-less phone I guess. That’s probably more important than using the phone itself I guess…

Secondly, these phones with moving parts will probably have next to no resell value precisely because of the fact that you risk buying an Oppo Find X that is left with 500 slides before that mechanism fails.

“What if the slider doesn’t fail?”

I mean I could be entirely wrong and maybe the sliding mechanism has a 5 or 6 year lifespan -which would be very reasonable- but still the sliding camera isn’t the only compromise on the Find X.

Why on earth is the rear camera covered?

Ok Oppo, I get why you put the front camera in a sliding mechanism. You wanted to make sure the screen is as big as possible and there are no intrusions. Why does the rear camera also have to be covered? Can anyone please explain this to me. Anyone?

Price

The official pricing is yet to be confirmed for western markets, but when using (current) conversion rates the Oppo Find X will probably cost over US$1 100 which is just ridiculous for an Oppo phone. The reason why Oppo phones are usually ‘considered’ in any tech conversation is because they offer quality whilst being much cheaper than established and trusted brands like Samsung, Apple or LG.

Even the ‘revoltionary Vivo Nex S’ costs less than the Samsung S9, iPhone 8 and iPhone X. Why? Because Vivo have self-awareness something Oppo seems to be lacking when you take a closer look at this.

Does your $1100 get you waterproofing?

Nope. Almost every other flagship or premium phone has water resistance but the Oppo Find X which is more expensive than most if not all these phones chose that water-resistance –an actually useful feature- wasn’t priority. You know what the priority was, a 92.25% screen to body ratio. *sigh*

Does your $1100 get you a headphone jack?

No headphone jack. This isn’t a big deal but it’s one of those compromises worth mentioning. We’ve reached a point where a headphone jack is either there or not. Samsung Galaxy S9 has it but the iPhone X doesn’t. It just depends on what consumers are prioritising and it seems consumers are ok with this. This is not too big a deal but in a phone that makes so many compromises it would have been cool if they had this as one of the few positives.

Does your $1100 all-glass phone have wireless charging?

Most manufacturers have resorted to all-glass designs because of two-reasons. This design makes network reception a breeze when compared to metal phones. They also did this to incorporate wireless charging which seems to be very important these days. I have never used wireless charging so I’m not sure how convenient or life-changing it is but even if I got the Oppo Find X for over $1000 it wouldn’t even be possible to see if wireless charging is as convenient as advertised.

Does your $1100 get you a fingerprint sensor?

The cheaper Vivo Nex S (which I’m not a fan of either) has an in-display fingerprint reader at least. That mean’s if you prefer that form of authentication or you wouldn’t want your camera popping up willy-nilly you can resort to that for unlocking the phone. The Find X however says, “to hell with the fingerprint sensor. Either you will wait for your camera to pop-up or you will use unlock patterns like we did in 2011. Live with it.”

“Sir, Can you put a case on your $1100 all-glass phone?”

The reply to that question would be, “At best I can put a 3-sided case on my phone,” or “I have to get a very elastic case that stretches when the camera slides up, but boy this bezel-less screen sure is worth all of that.”

We’ve been here before

Back in 2015 Oppo unveiled the N3 which also had a motorized camera. The phone had no front camera so they had to create a motor that would spin the back camera and users would take selfies with that. Cool idea, but it never really stuck. We never saw a follow up to this concept which is pretty much evidence that it failed. Will it work now? I don’t think so.

So yeah, “Oppo, Imma let you finish but the Find X seems like one of the worst flagships of all-time…”


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16 thoughts on “Innovation In Smartphones Is Dead! Let’s Talk About The Oppo Find X

  1. i am annoyed by this article, so much i am laughing at myself. anyway.
    until they develop underscreen cameras this is the best design we have to settle for. what if the slider fails…well every android phone i knows asks for a pin/pattern when bio-metric options fails. waterproof, headphone jack, wireless charging…haa you are just reaching here but as you clearly mentioned you hate this phone. lol

    1. I will be honest a $1000+ phone that is not waterproof is just plain stupid in my opinion.

    2. Yeah I am failing to see how this is worth a $1000+
      It’s interesting that you used the word settle. Why are you settling when you are buying one of the most expensive phones in the markets?

      1. i meant design wise. either that or a huge top bezel to accommodate the camera and sensor. or maybe you like the notch? and its not a bad settle in my opinion, i think its pretty cool. ok maybe it would excite me the first few days and id eventually get annoyed by the sliding thingy everytime i unlock my phone. either way i dont think it takes away any value from the device.

        1. Galaxy S9 has a bezel but I don’t think of it as being huge.. maybe it’s just a preference issue

    3. You seem to have misunderstood, his annoyance stems from being charged +$1 000 for a screen to body ratio and not much else(i.e no: waterproofing, wireless charging, headphone jack and limited biometrics). Also manufacturers are moving away from anything and everything mechanical

      1. 6.4″ AMOLED display,Qualcomm SD845, Octa-core 4×2.8 GHz Kryo 385 Gold & 4×1.7 GHz Kryo 385 Silver, 256 GB internal, 8 GB RAM, Dual 16 MP camera.

        excuse me if i am wrong but this phone packs the specs of a flagship, actually the same as the galaxy s9 plus which costs $1000 also, or maybe because its not labelled Samsung that is where the problem is. is it a matter of brand or performance? which 1 makes it not worthy of a premium price?

    1. My friend, this phone is very official… Vivo Apex was the concept phone.. This is expected to release sometime in August this year.

  2. The problem with this article are simple the writer has narsistical tendencies this is why it’s preferential to have fans talk about phones than people like you. This phone has a high screen to body ratio because of the curved nature of its screen. Technology advancements are going in this direction but you want to pull back the advancements very sorry my friend. Oppo already about slide mechanism problems and they have rectified the issue if you look at reviewers like mkbhd who have used the phone others you will see how this phone actually looks and works and get a clue don’t diss what you can’t get your hands on to review always be objective

  3. Your review is not objective, you clearly dislike the Oppo brand, also you have not tested the handset in real life, your report is based on pieces of information from videos and website articles, you only focused on your perceived negatives, the oppo find x is an innovative and refreshing concept, many manufacturers are imitating the iphone x, oppo has a pop up camera that’s new, what nice things do you have to say about the oppo find x?

  4. I think this is more like an advanced concept device put into production to garner mind share for Oppo in the flagship space currently held by the apples and samsungs of this world. Thats a tough market to stand out in so you need something over the top like the FX. So yes, that means you will need to treat it like a precious egg and bear with its quirks and trade offs, just like you would the concept cars at the geneva auto show. And just like those cars (except that you can actually buy and use it), this phone has enthusiasts talking about Oppo, negatively and positively. Good move i think.

  5. That’s a radical idea by Oppo. It has allowed them to get noticed just like what Vivo has done with their Vivo Nex

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