How many megapixels does your pretty face deserve? 16 apparently, according to a couple of new Android smartphones from Oppo. The freshly announced R9 and R9 Plus are the latest addition to the Chinese company's mid-range line, featuring a powerful front-facing camera with Samsung's 16-megapixel ISOCELL sensor and a bright f/2.0 aperture, along with Oppo's new and improved beautification plus selfie panorama modes. These will no doubt be a big hit amongst ladies in Asia, but that's not to say men can't enjoy the occasional selfies, either (yes, I'm very much guilty here).
Gallery: Oppo R9 | 10 Photos
Gallery: Oppo R9 | 10 Photos
The R9 series comes in a finely sandblasted aluminum body in either gold or pink, and they also boast super slim bezels -- just 1.66mm on the R9 and 1.76mm on the larger R9 Plus, thus making it easier to grip their what would otherwise be larger bodies. There's also a fingerprint reader, but unlike the one on last year's R7 Plus, this time Oppo decided to place it on the front instead of the back, making it more convenient to unlock the phone while it's lying on the table. What remains unchanged is Oppo's dual Nano SIM tray design, with the second SIM slot doubling as a microSD slot, should you require more storage space. On the software side, the R9 runs on Oppo's new ColorOS 3.0 which is based on Android 5.1.1, but hopefully we'll get something newer by the time it hits the overseas markets.
Despite the near-identical looks, the R9 and R9 Plus pack rather different internals. Underneath the R9's 5.5-inch 1080p AMOLED screen you'll find MediaTek's 2GHz octa-core Helio P10 chipset, along with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage, a 2,850mAh battery and a 13-megapixel f/2.2 main camera. While Oppo's insane SuperVOOC rapid charging technology has yet to leave the lab, you can still enjoy the regular VOOC on the R9 series, which lets you go from zero to 70 percent in just half an hour. It's also worth noting that unlike Quick Charge 2.0/3.0 and similar standards, VOOC uses just the common 5V instead of higher voltages, meaning the device doesn't get hot easily while being charged.
As the name suggests, the R9 Plus has a bigger 6-inch AMOLED screen of the same resolution, as well as Qualcomm's 1.8GHz octa-core Snapdragon 652 chipset, 4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage (128GB version to follow) and a massive 4,120mAh battery. Even the main camera is better: It uses Sony's 16-megapixel IMX298 sensor and features the same f/2.0 aperture as the front camera. Given the similar specs, let's hope that the performance on these two imagers are more or less consistent.
There's no word on when the R9 and R9 Plus will be available outside China just yet, but for your reference, they will be launching locally on March 24th and April 12th for 2,799 yuan (about $430) and 3,299 yuan (about $510), respectively. Sure, these prices aren't quite as competitive as those from Xiaomi nor OnePlus, but as one of the top 10 smartphone brands globally, we have a feeling that these new phones will still sell well.