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OnePlus' statement about OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro throttling claims leaves a lot to be desired

Currently, OnePlus claims that it made performance-based changes after receiving feedback from users. (Image source: OnePlus)
Currently, OnePlus claims that it made performance-based changes after receiving feedback from users. (Image source: OnePlus)
OnePlus has responded to claims that it throttles CPU performance in the new OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro. The company asserts that it was helping 'to provide a smooth experience while reducing power consumption' based on user feedback, even though it did not tell anyone that it had imposed a per-app CPU performance limit.

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Yesterday, we reported that OnePlus had been caught throttling the performance of many applications in its latest flagship smartphones. According to AnandTech, the OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro limit CPU performance in Chrome, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, to name but a few. Anandtech has not discovered a complete blocklist containing all affected apps, but it has tested numerous popular ones.

OnePlus has now responded to the criticism, resulting in Geekbench delisting the OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro from its Android Benchmark chart. OnePlus' statement is as follows:

Our top priority is always delivering a great user experience with our products, based in part on acting quickly on important user feedback. Following the launch of the OnePlus 9 and 9 Pro in March, some users told us about some areas where we could improve the devices' battery life and heat management. As a result of this feedback, our R&D team has been working over the past few months to optimize the devices' performance when using many of the most popular apps, including Chrome, by matching the app's processor requirements with the most appropriate power. This has helped to provide a smooth experience while reducing power consumption. While this may impact the devices' performance in some benchmarking apps, our focus as always is to do what we can to improve the performance of the device for our users.

The above statement suggests that OnePlus added these performance limits after people had started receiving their handsets. However, we observed unusually low browser benchmark results when reviewing the OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro in early April. Specifically, we benchmarked the OnePlus 9 Pro on OxygenOS 11.2.1.1, day-one software that OnePlus issued on March 24. Hence, our experience is at odds with OnePlus' statement.

On the one hand, OnePlus should come clean about when it added this per-app performance limiter and if it was after OxygenOS 11.2.1.1. On the other hand, its statement fails to explain why it chose to hide these changes from people. In our opinion, adding an option within settings to limit CPU performance on a per-app basis would have been a better way of going about things.

As it stands, the performance that the OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro show in synthetic benchmarks provides a false impression of they will perform in popular apps like Chrome. In a way, this is similar to how OnePlus cheated benchmarks in 2017 with the OnePlus 5. Ultimately, OnePlus still has questions to answer regarding its behaviour here.

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Source(s)

OnePlus via XDA Developers

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Alex Alderson
Alex Alderson - Senior Tech Writer - 4126 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2018
Prior to writing and translating for Notebookcheck, I worked for various companies including Apple and Neowin. I have a BA in International History and Politics from the University of Leeds, which I have since converted to a Law Degree. Happy to chat on Twitter or Notebookchat.
contact me via: @aldersonaj
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2021 07 > OnePlus' statement about OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro throttling claims leaves a lot to be desired
Alex Alderson, 2021-07- 8 (Update: 2021-07- 8)