oneplus nord n300 xda 55509283

A basic phone that you can get for free

When OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei launched the Nord series two years ago, he said he wanted to remove unnecessary smartphone features and “go back to basics.”


The new OnePlus Nord N300 takes that mantra a bit further. It’s a no-frills budget phone exclusive to T-Mobile in the US and makes no attempt to woo anyone other than the ultra-budget. From the lack of an alert slider to the not-quite-quick UI, it doesn’t feel much like the OnePlus we know. But that’s okay because this thing can be obtained for basically free if you sign up for a T-Mobile contract, and at this price, it’s hard to pick out much.

About this review: OnePlus sent us the Nord N300 for review. He did not see the contents of this review prior to publication.

OnePlus Nord N300

OnePlus Nord N300 5G

The OnePlus Nord N300 is a 5G budget phone that’s exclusive to T-Mobile and Metro PCS in the US.

Brand
OnePlus

SoC
Mediatek dimension 810

Show
6.56 inch LCD

RAM
4GB

storage
64 GB

battery
5000 mAh

ports
USB-C; 3.5 mm

The operating system
OxygenOS is based on Android 12

front camera
16 megapixels

back cameras
48 MP (wide); 2 MP (depth)

Connection
5G, LTE, Wi-Fi

Dimensions
163.8 x 75.1 x 8 mm

Weight
190 grams

Shipping
33 watts (with charger)

Positives Negatives
Free if you commit to a two-year contract with T-Mobile or MetroPCS The ugly notch
Fast charger with charger included There is no ultra wide lens or zoom
Excellent battery life Not the fastest performance

OnePlus Nord N300 5G: Pricing and availability

  • This phone is exclusively available in the United States through T-Mobile and MetroPCS
  • You can get it for free if you sign up for a two-year plan

The OnePlus Nord N300 is now available in the US exclusively for T-Mobile and its subsidiary, MetroPCS. The phone can be purchased without strings attached for $228, but if you sign up for a two-year plan with T-Mobile or MetroPCS, you’ll get the device for free.

Hardware and Design: Check your expectations

  • Decent screen with a 90Hz refresh rate, but the notch is an eyesore
  • Lightweight and easy to carry

oneplus-nord-n300-xda-55509282

I’ll be honest, when I first got my fix on the OnePlus Nord N300, I thought the device looked really old. Waterdrop notch and oversized chin edge in late 2022?

But then I remembered looking at the phone through the eyes of a spoiled reviewer who got his hands on every major phone, who once covered Asia’s most competitive phone landscape before moving to the US.

In the United States, there are far fewer phone brands and options available, and most people get their phones through carrier subsidies. So when I consider that the Nord N300 is clearly aimed at those on a budget and can be obtained practically free with a T-Mobile contract, I’ve been able to adjust my expectations.

From this perspective, the OnePlus Nord N300 is … good? The 6.5-inch 720 x 1612 LCD obviously isn’t the sharpest panel, but it still produces vibrant colors, and the 90Hz refresh rate is very welcome. Screen brightness tops out at 500 nits, which does feel a bit dull in direct sunlight, but then again, this price tag is hard to grip.

oneplus-nord-n300-xda-55509291

At 8mm thick and tipping the scales at 6.7oz (190g), the Nord N300 is easy to hold, especially since the phone has a flat screen and sides. Unlike recent iPhones, which have a flat design that results in harsh angular corners, OnePlus has cut the corners slightly so they don’t dig into the palm.

oneplus-nord-n300-xda-55509287

The back side is plastic, but it has this textured textured material that feels good. The buttons are clicky and don’t wobble, and the dual speakers produce good sound. There is also a headphone jack and an SD card slot. You’ll need the latter because the Nord 300 only comes with 64GB of storage. Nord N300 is powered by MediaTek 810 with 4GB of RAM. The combination isn’t a strength but the phone snaps, even if it obviously takes longer to launch apps. The Nord N300 also has a large 5,000mAh battery that can be quickly charged at 33W using the included charger.

oneplus-nord-n300-xda-55509305

Cameras: Does it have “three” cameras?

  • The Nord N300 has three cameras, but one mostly useless lens
  • OnePlus’ image processing software helps you take decent looking photos

There are “three” cameras in the phone: two on the front and the selfie. I put quotes around the third word because one of the two lenses on the back is a useless 2MP depth sensor. Keep in mind that this phone has two functional cameras instead. The main camera is 48 MP, f/1.8. pedestrian camera. There is no optical image stabilization (OIS) and the image sensor is small.

oneplus-nord-n300-xda-55509298

Fortunately, OnePlus’ image processing software is pretty good. In the samples below, you can see that it handles dynamic range well, even in challenging, high-contrast scenes.

It really shows how much smartphone image processing has improved in recent years. Even four years ago, an LG or Samsung flagship would blow out the highlights in some of the shots below. Now, even a budget phone can find the right balance.

The main camera does exhibit a bit of shutter lag, and the lack of OIS means any video not shot on a tripod looks shaky. The selfie camera is also good, but it doesn’t handle harsh highlights as well as the main camera.

The lack of an ultra-wide or dedicated zoom lens limits its versatility, but the group this phone is aimed at probably won’t mind.

Software: Good, but no longer special

  • Android 12 with OxygenOS on top
  • OxygenOS is nowhere near as friendly with one hand as it once was

There was quite a bit of backlash among phone lovers and cellphone writers when OnePlus admitted that it was indeed part of Oppo in 2021. It wasn’t the news that OnePlus wasn’t an independent startup that bothered us. Most of us who follow smartphones already know this. The facade was only built for the western market anyway; In China and Asian regions such as Singapore and Malaysia, OnePlus always was It is marketed under the umbrella of Oppo.

oneplus-nord-n300-xda-55509276

Instead, what disappointed many was the news of OnePlus’ beloved OxygenOS merging with Oppo’s ColorOS. To be clear, ColorOS isn’t a bad Android skin. I really like it. But OxygenOS has long been considered the gold standard for Android skins, and many of us (myself included) considered it superior to even Android.

This is no more. OxygenOS is here in name only, and really behaves like ColorOS. Again, that’s fine, but some of the little touches that made OxygenOS a pleasure to use, such as the very easy-to-use user interface (apps will open in folders at the bottom of the screen) are no longer there. Instead, the version of OxygenOS here seems a bit generic.

But I don’t think those who choose to get this phone from T-Mobile will notice, or even mind. The program behaves well and gets the job done. But for us phone lovers, this is just another UI.

Performance: Excellent battery life and fast charging

  • Nord N300 uses MediaTek Dimensity 810 core processor with 4GB RAM
  • You can easily get 13-14 hours of battery on a single charge

As mentioned earlier, the MediaTek Dimensity 810 with 4GB of RAM isn’t a powerhouse, but while the phone can’t be called fast, it’s not slow either. If you only use this phone for texting, Instagram, checking emails, and even casual games, you won’t have many issues. If you try to do anything more intense, like editing a video on a device or playing a graphic intensive game like Genshin effectThen yes, the phone is bog.

oneplus-nord-n300-xda-55509286

Where the Nord N300 beats many phones is battery life and charging. The 5,000mAh cell can easily finish a full 13- and 14-hour day with 40-50% battery backup, and the 33W charger that’s included boosts the phone from 0 to 100 in about 70 minutes. Considering you can pay $1,300 for a phone these days and not get a charger, or get higher charging speeds at 30W, the Nord N300 that gives you a 33W charger is a huge bonus.

OnePlus Nord N300: Should you get this phone?

oneplus-nord-n300-xda-55509288

You should get the OnePlus Nord N300 if:

  • You want a free phone that does the basics
  • You’re fine with committing to a two-year contract with T-Mobile or MetroPCS

You should not get the OnePlus Nord N300 if:

  • You don’t want to commit to a two-year contract
  • You don’t mind paying a little more for a superior phone experience

Other than fast charging and a surprisingly powerful main camera, the OnePlus Nord N300 is a slightly generic entry-level phone. If you’re a remote smartphone fan, chances are you’ll want something that looks a little better (minus the notch) or with a more versatile camera system.

OnePlus Nord N300 5G

But this phone is clearly not aimed at those people. The OnePlus Nord N300 is designed for people who don’t mind a free phone provided by their carrier. And for more casual smartphone users, this phone is more than good enough.

If you don’t get the Nord N300 for free, if you plan to buy it directly from T-Mobile, I’d suggest you reconsider. I’d recommend spending $230 on Amazon to get an entry-level unlocked Xiaomi phone (usually under the Poco brand). Yes, Xiaomi phones don’t have an official warranty in the US, but Xiaomi’s $200 phones are better than everyone else’s $200 phones.

If you want an officially supported phone in the US, and you also like OnePlus, the OnePlus N20 is probably a better choice. It costs a little more ($299 from T-Mobile), but it has a better OLED screen and a more versatile camera system. In addition, it does not have a slit.

OnePlus Nord N300

OnePlus Nord N300 5G

The OnePlus Nord N300 is a 5G budget phone that’s exclusive to T-Mobile and Metro PCS in the US.