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Oppo R17 release date and price rumours: Camera-focused R17 unveiled in Shanghai

Pete Clark
3 Sep 2018
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Oppo has released the latest addition to its camera-focused R-series - what are the main headlines?

The world of smartphones is fast-moving. So fast-moving, in fact, that Chinese firm Oppo has already launched their third model of 2018. In recent times it seems Oppo just cannot wait to release new phones, but after the success of the Find X and the R15, who can blame them?

The next edition of the latter, imaginatively named the R17, launched in Shanghai on 23 August. The R17 has been available for preorder on Oppo’s official website, as well as those of several major Chinese retailers, since 18 August, in anticipation of the official release.

According to Oppo’s website, we should expect an in-display fingerprint scanner, a 6.4in display and 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. It will also feature an ultra-small notch for the phone’s front-facing camera, as well as Gorilla Glass 6 screen protection. Inside, we will find the all-new Snapdragon 670 chipset. The aforementioned in-display fingerprint scanner will sit underneath a 6.4in AMOLED screen that will provide Full HD+ resolution.

The video teaser on Oppo’s official Weibo account also included reference to a sister model named the R17 Pro, which we don’t know so much about. If Oppo’s previous smartphones are anything to go by, it is likely to be a beefed-up R17 with improved software, and a higher-quality camera.

The R-series has made a reputation for pushing the boundaries of smartphone photography and design, whilst remaining affordable. Here’s all you need to know about the latest addition.

Oppo R17: Everything you need to know

Oppo R17 release date: When will you be able to buy one?

As previously mentioned, Oppo officially launched the R17 on 23 August. 

The R17 has been available for preorder in China since 18 August, but it's unclear when UK citizens will be able to get hold of one. Oppo only recently entered the European market with the launch of its Find X flagship model in Paris a couple of months ago. Since then, the company has confirmed to TechRadar that it will launch all of its smartphones in the UK, albeit with no information about timescale, or the extent to which they intend to do so.

Oppo R17 price: What will it cost?

There was panic as initial leaks showed a price of CNY99,999 (around £11,400) for the R17. Although smartphone prices have increased year on year since their inception, this seemed particularly absurd.

Thankfully, the original price was revealed to be a technical glitch, and Oppo has since confirmed you’ll be able to get your hands on the R17 for a mere CNY3,499 – around £400 or so.

We remain in the dark regarding the price of the R17 Pro. If previous R-series phones are anything to go by, however, you should expect to part with an extra £50-100 for the upgraded features.

Oppo R17 design: What will it look like?

The R15 was singled out for praise for its sleek design, and Oppo has built on this with the R17.

It will feature a 6.4in screen with no bezels on either side, while the top will have a razor-thin bezel for the speaker. The panel below the display will be almost non-existent, while the ‘water drop’ shaped notch at the top which houses the front-facing camera is noticeably smaller than on the R15.

Rounded corners and a screen-to-body ratio of 91.5% will add to the sleek appearance of the handset, with the in-display fingerprint scanner helping to declutter the main display.

It will initially be available in two colours – Stream Blue and Neon Purple. The former will switch between blue, green and aqua depending on the lighting, whilst the latter has one magenta and one violet edge on the rear panel, meaning the phone will look completely different when viewed from either side.

Oppo R17 features: What’s new?

Oppo’s official website details the 6.4in FHD+ OLED display – an upgrade on the 6.3in display of its predecessor. The screen will come equipped with Corning’s Gorilla Glass 6 protection, helping to protect against breakage, scratches and general wear and tear. Corning claims that the glass can withstand 15 drops from a height of one metre – fantastic news for the clumsy smartphone enthusiast.

The screen will sit above the aforementioned in-display fingerprint scanner. This consists of a 4mm² sensor, which Oppo claim will be able to detect your fingerprint and unlock your phone in under one second.

The R17 will have Color OS 5.2 as its main UI platform. This is based on Android’s Oreo 8.1, and should bring more voice-activated features, information panels, as well as optimised battery performance.

Connectivity features are pretty standard, including 4G VoLTE, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS/A-GPS and USB Type-C.

As with all R-series devices, the camera will play a hugely important role. The R17 will sport a 25-megapixel lens with f/2.0 aperture, in the front-facing ‘selfie’ camera with AI capabilities. At the rear, you will find dual 16-megapixel camera units with flash.

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Oppo R17 software: What’s inside?

The battery will be 3,500mAh, slightly bigger than the 3,450mAh power cell found inside its predecessor. It will feature Oppo’s VOOC fast-charging technology which will deliver two hours of battery life after just five minutes of charging.

Oppo themselves have confirmed that the R17 will come with 8GB of RAM. This is an upgrade on the R15’s 6GB, and will allow for improved performance.

The main headline is that all this internal storage will be coupled with Qualcomm’s brand-new Snapdragon 670 processor. The 670 will feature the same digital signal processing found in higher-tier mobile platforms such as Qualcomm’s Hexagon 685. The always-on, always-sensing processor makes it ideal for AI-powered apps, and should aid in improving the user experience of the R17’s hugely powerful selfie camera.

Within the Snapdragon 670 is the Kryo 360 CPU. With two performance cores of up to 2GHz, and 6 efficiency cores of up to 1.7GHz, this CPU is designed to improve the performance of its predecessor by up to 15%. This will allow R17 users to juggle multiple apps whilst sacrificing less battery life.

The Spectra 250 ISP will enable premium features in the R17’s cameras, including noise reduction, image stabilisation and active depth sensing. In addition, users will be able to record Ultra HD video footage while using 30% less battery than the 670’s predecessor.

The X12 LTE Modem will support download speeds of up to 600Mbits/sec and upload speeds of 150Mbits/sec. It will also save you time and effort by switching between LTE and Wi-Fi automatically, depending on which has the highest speeds at any given moment in time.

Stay tuned to this page for the latest updates on Oppo’s R17 and R17 Pro.

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