OPPO has came a long way since its “thinnest smartphone” days, a feature that in recent years has lost its appeal as a competitive feature. The OPPO smartphones today are feature-rich and focuses on camera optics innovation, not unlike many other smartphone makers out there. The recently launched OPPO R15 took a leaf out of R11 — the world’s first 20MP front and 20MP + 16MP rear dual camera then — to offer the same selfie quality but unfortunately a “lesser” dual-lens camera. If camera specifications are your thing, OPPO also launched a more premium R15 Pro that offers the same optics as the R11. More on that later.
Design-wise, there is nothing exceptionally outstanding or underwhelming about the R15. It has a good size, fits well in your hand and the reflective glass back does give the phone a premium look and feel. The increasingly common notch you see on the front doesn’t bother me as much but it does make the phone look similar to the iPhone X. There are 3 colours to choose from; Rouge Red, Frost White and Nebula Purple. My favourite is Nebula Purple, only because I am a subtle kinda guy.
R15 runs on a MediaTek Helio P60 2GHz Octa-core processor, 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage with the option of increasing it further with a microSD card. The generous 6.28-inch OLED screen has a resolution of 1080 x 2280 pixels that is powered with a 3450mAh battery.
Now comes the most note-worthy part. The camera.
Like I said earlier, it seems like the new battleground for phones is in the camera optics and technology department. The OPPO R15 (and R15 Pro) is the first to adopt the SONY IMX519 sensor, SONY’s latest generation of image sensors that improve shooting speed and sensitivity. This upgrade is also means the new models can provide users with the ability to check HDR shots in real-time. OPPO attaches a bright wide angle 16-megapixel + 5 megapixel f/1.7 dual rear cameras for everyday shots and a 20-megapixel f/2.0 front camera for selfie lover.
Perhaps one of the most stand-out feature for the OPPO R15 series is the harnessing of Artificial Intelligence for photography. Here’s how the phone is using AI to improve your shot:
- AI Portrait Mode that has 3D portrait lighting capabilities and gives the image a nice bokeh effect. The is only available for the dual rear camera.
- AI Scene Recognition that can identify 120 scenes and 16 tags and auto adjust camera settings to capture a subject or scene.
- AI Beauty that draws from millions of beautification schemes to enhance skin colour and texture. If you like flawless skin before posting on Instagram, you no longer have to do it on an app like Meitu, the phone basically does it for you real-time. I know my mom will be very happy with this feature.
Here are some straight-out-of-the-phone images for reference:
You can get your OPPO R15 online or in-stores at a recommended retail price of S$749. If you have a little more budget to spare, we suggest going for the OPPO R15 Pro (S$899). For $150 more, you get a better camera, NFC capabilities and most importantly, IP67 water resistant and dust-proof design to shield you from the unpredictable Singapore weather.