The OPPO F1s isn’t an ordinary phone. It may look like a typical iPhone knockoff, but spend some time with it, and you’ll notice a better camera on the front than on the back. That’s unheard of! Excuse us as we test it out for this review.

It has a 5.5-inch display and nicely curved metal body.

OPPO F1s front

The screen resolution is only 1280 x 720 pixels, though.

iPhone design goes here.

OPPO F1s back

No dual-lens setups; just one camera with an LED flash.

Not iPhone-like is the SIM card tray.

OPPO F1s sim card tray

Fits two nano-SIM cards and a microSD card.

There’s a fingerprint sensor on the home button.

OPPO F1s home button

It’s fast, and can be used to open specific apps using certain fingers.

The front-facing camera is the real star.

OPPO F1s front camera

Doesn’t look like much, even though it has a 16-megapixel sensor and bright f/2 lens.

Sharp, wide-angled, and fast under weak lighting.

OPPO F1s sample selfie photo

No filters were needed here.

But there’s no selfie flash to save you.

OPPO F1s sample selfie photo

Proper LED lighting in front would have helped.

Beauty mode makes you look… smooth.

OPPO F1s sample selfie photo

Take note: This is the highest level of the mode.

You can instantly shoot a selfie GIF.

OPPO F1s sample selfie GIF

Wait for it…

The primary camera isn’t as good.

OPPO F1s camera interface

We appreciate how user-friendly the camera app is.

As impressed as we are with the front-facing shooter, the 13-megapixel unit on the rear didn’t prove its worth to us. It generally has a difficult time locking on the subject, and we can spot distinct grain even when the lighting conditions are favorable.

While colors are accurate and the dynamic range extends in HDR mode, darker areas in photos turn out mushy — probably in an attempt to hide the loss of details.

Take a look at some of our better shots:

Is it more than a selfie expert?

OPPO F1s gaming

Lag during graphics-intensive games is hardly noticeable.

We’ve spent so much time on its cameras, we barely touched on the phone’s performance.

Overall, we can’t complain. We weren’t too happy to find out the OPPO F1s has an unremarkable MediaTek octa-core processor, but the 3GB of memory somehow makes up for it. Switching between several apps didn’t considerably slow down the handset, and none of the 3D games we tried made the F1s pant.

We do wish the display resolution were a little higher, but the bright panel made photos look even better after every shot taken. The single speaker, on the other hand, was ordinary — just good enough to mark its presence without being able to play loud music for you.

The unit we reviewed had 32GB of internal storage on board; around 24GB of actual space was available for personal files. We suggest expanding it using a microSD card, which can work simultaneously with two SIM cards.

Does it last long enough?

OPPO F1s settings

No Android Marshmallow or Nougat here.

We must give the F1s credit for having some energy left in the tank after taking hundreds of photos in a day. It’s not that surprising, really, once you count the relatively large 3075mAh battery capacity for its thin 7.4mm frame.

What’s strange, however, is the inclusion of a two-year-old Android operating system in 5.1 Lollipop. You wouldn’t think much of it at first, considering the heavy user interface OPPO applied on top, but you’ll be missing some key battery-saving features.

Having one of the newer Android versions, specifically Marshmallow or Nougat, means better app and memory management. With its older Android OS, the F1s experiences faster battery drain when met with too many open apps and programs that don’t close on their own.

OPPO offers app-optimization software built into the F1s, although it feels more gimmicky than effective.

Is this your GadgetMatch?

OPPO F1s rear

Take a long, hard look at the camera.

We suggest looking through your photo albums first, and counting how many selfies you have in comparison to all your other shots. The answer should be clear after that test.

If it isn’t clear by now, the F1s is for those who value a front camera more than any other part of the phone. Yes, there are more capable selfie-centric smartphones out there, equipped with optical image stabilization and an LED flash up front, but this sexy device does it at a lower price.

You can purchase the OPPO F1s for only PhP 12,990 in the Philippines, INR 15,985 in India, MYR 1,198 in Malaysia, or VND 5,990,000 in Vietnam. As a bonus, it comes with a clear case in the package, but has no fast charging technology in the adapter or handset itself.

SEE ALSO
OPPO F1 Plus Hands-On Review

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