OPPO elevated the A-series to the mid-range territory last year with the A9 (2020). The phone was meant to fill the spot left vacant by the company’s F-series of devices but unfortunately faced an uphill battle because of its sub-Php 16k price tag. The price was problematic since the phone only came with an HD+ display and lacked fast wired charging, among other features.
The A92 is a supposedly better phone that addresses many of the flaws of the A9 (2020), and OPPO hopes the changes done on the phone would be enough to make its fans happy.
-Loud and clear stereo speakers
-EIS works even at 4K video resolution
-Corrects flaws of the A9 (2020)
-Snapdragon 665 a weak processor of choice
-Ultra-wide-angle video limited to HD resolution
OPPO has overhauled the packaging of their phone to make it stand out on store shelves. Instead of a typical white box, you get photos of the phone in front, with a stylized OPPO A92 branding in between the two images. Inside the box, you get the usual accessories: jelly case, SIM ejector tool, earphones, USB-C cable, and an 18w charger.
While a majority of brands are veering away from gradient colors, OPPO has done the opposite with the A92. The company is still sticking with the color treatment, at least with their A-series of phones. The A92 sports a new “Shining White” color that has loud color gradient transitions from white to candy green.
The same gradient finish is also applied to the frame of the phone as well, similar to what they did with the R17 Pro. Fans of more discreet colorways can opt to grab the Twilight Black color instead, which is massively toned-down compared to the color variant we were lent.
While the A92 still uses polycarbonate for the back panel, it feels more solid compared to the one used on the A9 (2020). The material used feels similar to the glasstic panels Samsung uses for its Galaxy A-series phones.
If OPPO’s branding wasn’t present at the bottom of the phone, you’d probably mistake the A92 for a mid-range device made by their Korean rival, Samsung, thanks to its rectangular camera module.
The button and port layout are similar to the A9 (2020), save for the power button that now doubles as a fingerprint scanner.
Full HD+ at last
One of the biggest pain points of the A9 (2020) was its HD+ panel—which was incredibly out of place for a device marketed as an all-around entertainment buddy. OPPO corrected this by giving the A92 a 6.5-inch full HD+ resolution display, along with a punch-hole that houses the 16-megapixel selfie snapper. With the resolution upgrade, the A92 displays sharper and more detailed images compared to its predecessor, on top of having more vibrant colors and good viewing angles.
Like the A9 (2020), the A92 also has loud stereo speakers that maintain its fidelity even when you max out the volume. The A92 has one of the best speakers for its class, and can even rival speakers from more expensive flagship offerings. You also don’t need to buy Bluetooth headphones or TWS earbuds since the phone still comes with a 3.5mm headphone jack.
The A92 uses the same set of cameras found on the A9 (2020): 48-megapixel main camera, 8-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera, 2-megapixel portrait camera, and 2-megapixel mono camera. Overall performance is almost similar to what we got with the A9 (2020), though colors appear to be more saturated with photos shot using the main rear camera.
The A92’s digital zoom (using the 48-megapixel main camera) has improved especially when it comes to detail retention. While photos taken at 5x digital zoom are usable, we recommend sticking to 2x in case you need the extra reach—detail retention at 5x is not as great compared to 2x.
Comparing between the main camera and ultra-wide-angle camera, OPPO improved the colors and detail on the latter, though it still struggles when shooting against the light.
The same goes for the A92’s selfie snapper. By default, the image processing kept our selfies more natural-looking than ever, though you still have the option to use OPPO’s suite of beautification tools.
Video is likewise impressive, with EIS for both 4K and Full HD resolution. However, EIS at 4K resolution is limited due to hardware limitations. Here’s sample footage shot in 4K, completely handheld:
Unlike the A9 (2020), the A92 lets you use the ultra-wide-angle camera for videos, though you are limited to HD resolution. We think that it is more of a software-related limitation, and we hope OPPO rolls out an update to enable Full HD video recording using the ultra-wide-angle camera.
A familiar set of internals
While OPPO upgraded the display on the A92, it retained the A9 (2020)’s internals: Snapdragon 665, 8GB RAM, and 128GB internal storage.
We wished OPPO used a different processor on the A92, especially with other brands utilizing either Qualcomm’s newer Snapdragon 720G or MediaTek’s Helio G-series processors—both offering more muscle than the Snapdragon 665.
Daily use is generally smooth thanks to its generous 8GB RAM, and gaming performance has improved a bit on the A92—save for Asphalt 9, which has been an Achilles heel for the Snapdragon 665. Frame rates and overall stability has improved on games like PUBG Mobile, Call of Duty Mobile, and NBA 2K20 based on metrics we obtained on Gamebench. This can be credited to improved hardware and software optimization on OPPO’s part.
The A92 comes with a 5000mAh battery—the same cell found on the A9 (2020). While we got a lower PCMark score of 17 hours and 35 minutes, that easily translates to more than a days’ worth of use. The A92 comes with 18w wired charging, which is better than the A9 (2020)’s 10w charging. Topping up the A92’s cell takes around 2 hours from zero to 100%.
With features like fast charging, trendier punch-hole display, and a Full HD+ display, the A92 is what the A9 (2020) should have been when it launched late last year. Paired with stereo speakers, decent camera hardware and software, and decent RAM and storage combo, the A92 definitely lives up to its reputation as an all-around multimedia device.
However, the A92 is up for tough competition especially with its rivals using processors that are superior to the Snapdragon 665 and offer better features like 90hz displays, faster wired charging speeds, and higher-resolution main rear cameras.
The A92 is priced at Php 15,990. Pre-order is from June 20 to 26, where every order comes with a Rockspace P62 Pro Power Bank.