OnePlus appears to have silently and slightly upgraded some OnePlus 8Ts. Reports indicate that some recently purchased versions of the phone are now shipping with LPDDR5 RAM, a bump over the LPDDR4X RAM originally included and which OnePlus advertises. While the newer memory is technically “faster,” the bigger effect is on enthusiasts that might be rooting and ROMing.
The OnePlus 8T, launched last October, originally shipped with either 8GB or 12GB of LPDDR4X RAM, as its spec sheet still indicates. We should also point out, the OnePlus 9R (launched just back in April) also came with either 8GB or 12GB of RAM, but its spec sheet doesn’t name the type, and user reports indicate it probably launched using a mix of both RAM types.
As spotted by the folks at XDA Developers, reports indicate that the RAM swap in the 8T has caused an unintended side effect for those that run into issues when attempting to unbrick their devices. You might think that a change in RAM is a minor thing, but it can have some other consequences. For example, the MSMDownloadTool for the OnePlus 8T and 9R, used to recover the phones if you need to go back to stock or fix a seriously botched ROM install, wouldn’t function correctly in some cases because the image being used wasn’t compatible. In short: the RAM change affects more than just the spec sheet, it can also affect the sorts of images enthusiasts need to flash to the phones if they’re using custom ROMs.
LineageOS has included instructions for flashing the correct firmware images based on RAM for at least the last month, so it’s a change that’s been known in certain groups for a while, and odds are OnePlus has been using the newer LPDDR5 in the 8T for a while now, though it’s not clear if certain markets or SKUs are more likely to have one type than others.
You can check which kind of RAM your 8T or 9R has via an ADB command, but short of trying to determine what you need to flash, it’s probably not something most of our readers need to worry about.
We’ve reached out to OnePlus for more information regarding the change, but in the meantime, you might be in for a tiny upgrade if you buy a OnePlus 8T or 9R soon — and maybe a bit of a headache if you plan to ROM it and run into issues.