I’ve spent about a week with the Oppo R7 (R7g to be precise) as my primary mobile phone.  Every text, every call, every tweet, every snap and every Clash of Clans attack has been on this little beauty.. If you’re in the market for a smartphone this should be on the shopping list.

Is this the best smartphone on the market today?  On specs, performance and many other things – no.

Would the average punter on the street be able to tell the difference between the Oppo R7 and one of the bigger named flagship Android phones having used one or even played with one for a little while?  No.

And herein lies the problem for the big guys, they are making spectacular phones, with amazing design or build quality, but for day-t0-day use, they offer very little for the high price you pay.


Conversely, the problem for a brand like Oppo, shared by the likes of Motorola, Alcatel One-Touch and even Sony is – people just don’t know about them.

Oppo phones are now available at Dick Smith and Optus, and that’s a huge boost for the Chinese brand in Australia – distribution is king, and inking those kinds of deals will matter to the long and even short-term success here.

So, what’s not to like about the Oppo R7?  Very little.  There’s a few software tweaks which are interesting;  I had regular call drop-outs due to an option in “gesture & motion” settings to “Prevent misoperation” – but disabling that has fixed all my woes.  The standard “theme” is a little child-like, but I didn’t mind it after a while, a bit less corporate than others (though not as well simplified as what LG and Samsung have recently done with their installations of Android).

It’s a habit thing, but I found the location of the power button on the left to be a nuisance, but again – I’m an iPhone user “normally” so a week or so more and that would be covered off.  My only other pain was the default song “Free to Fly” playing when I wanted my Spotify to resume on Bluetooth connection in the car, but that’s more of a user and Spotify thing than Oppo.

The camera is good, the only issue I noticed in the remarkably iOS like camera app was the delay in getting a focus lock in some situations.  It could do with a bit of a tweak there, but perhaps a different Camera app would cover that off.

Battery life is good, certainly not great, but when you consider how damn thin this thing is – it’s very much acceptable.  I can’t imagine getting through a full solid day of use without a boost of charge, however its low battery life saving modes kick in and make that last 20% last a lot longer than you’d think.

What’s to like?  This thing is available for $0 upfront on a $40 Optus plan, that’s 500GB data, at $60 you’ll get 3GB of data – That’s the sort of dollar value parents are looking to spend on their kids, so this becomes a real contender for the teens out there.

Outright at Dick Smith – $449.  yep, half the price of the big boys, and I really can’t tell you why – other than to say spending more than $450 on an Android phone seems almost crazy to me.

Oh, and it comes with a screen protector applied to it, and a plastic case ready to go.  What more could you want?

This phone, along with many other “mid range” phones are exceptional value, they offer everything you want from the Android experience, in a beautifully designed package, slim, fast and frankly everything you’ll need.

Should you buy one?

Without hesitation I’d recommend this one to you. At the very least – go check one out.