The midrange smartphone category has grown nicely this past year, and as we get set for the Pixel 8a to make an appearance, we can fill our time with a OnePlus 12R vs Nothing Phone (2a) comparison to understand what the upcoming phone is competing with. In order to compare the OnePlus 12R and Nothing Phone (2a), we must first understand the standout features of each device that make them worth consideration. The OnePlus 12R specs have been well-received since launch, but there’s something about the Nothing Phone (2a) design details that we can’t take our eyes off of.

OnePlus 12R vs Nothing Phone 2a comparison

Image: The Nothing Phone (2a) on the left and the OnePlus 12R on the left

Comparing the OnePlus 12R vs Nothing Phone (2a): What Feature Are You Looking For?

If you live in the U.S. the decision between the OnePlus 12R vs Nothing Phone (2a) is one that has been made for you—the Nothing Phone (2a) has not received a full-scale launch yet in the U.S., restricted only to a developer-focused program with limited seats. In that sense, the OnePlus 12R is more commercially available and ready to perform its best for anyone tuned in to the mid-range category. The choice to skip the U.S. is an odd but increasingly common one, and Nothing has chosen to focus on the Asian and European markets where its products perform well already. 

It isn’t impossible to get your hands on the stylish statement piece though, so for those who are interested in enrolling in the program, this OnePlus 12R vs Nothing Phone (2a) comparison is meant for you.

Compare OnePlus 12R and Nothing Phone (2a) Specs

Starting off strong, the OnePlus 12R specs include a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor, which isn’t the latest on the market but hasn’t become outdated just yet. While it won’t support the full range of AI capabilities we see discussed everywhere, it will be able to handle all the tasks you’d traditionally expect of a smartphone. The Nothing Phone (2a) specs showcase MediaTek’s Dimensity 7200 Pro chipset, which is not as frequently seen on the market but is an efficient processor nevertheless. The Snapdragon series of chips is generally favored as being at the top of the market but the MediaTek version is not an underperformer either. 

The OnePlus 12R display specs include a 6.78-inch AMOLED 120Hz ProXDR display with 1264×2780 pixel resolution with 450 ppi density. The Corning Gorilla Glass Victus 2 protection is one you can count on for protection and with 4500 nits peak brightness, you can reliably use the device for all your daily needs. The device also has features like HDR10+, HDR Vivid, and Dolby Vision, all of which promise an unmatched high-quality visual experience. Additionally, the intelligent eye care feature promises to safeguard your eyesight under changing light settings, making it easy on the eyes despite the excessive use of our smartphones.

The Nothing Phone (2a) display specs, on the other hand, showcase a 6.7-inch flexible AMOLED display with 1084×2412 pixel resolution and 395 ppi. Utilizing the power of Corning Gorilla Glass v5 the display has a 120Hz refresh rate and HDR 10+ support, but a much more conservative peak brightness of 1,300 nits. If you’re someone who intends to spend a lot of time working outdoors or you are destined to go in and out of locations frequently, the OnePlus 12R and Nothing Phone (2a) battle is easily one by the former. 

OnePlus 12R vs Nothing Phone (2a) Camera Comparison

The next criterion to compare the OnePlus 12R and Nothing Phone (2a) on is the camera. The OnePlus 12R camera set-up includes a 50 MP Sony IMX890 lens, an 8 MP 112° Sony IMX355 ultra-wide lens, and a 2 MP macro lens with autofocus. The 16 MP front camera is a disappointment, although OnePlus is not the only company that has ignored the relevance of a good front camera. 

The Nothing Phone (2a) has a 50 MP Samsung GN9 wide-angle lens and a 50 MP ISOCELL JN1 ultrawide lens with an autofocus feature as well. We’re over smartphones throwing multiple camera lenses just to hit the triple/quad-camera quota so the Nothing Phone (2a)’s two higher-capacity cameras are quite sufficient for our needs. The device also has a 32 MP front camera which is helpful for those prone to recording through the front lens.

Both devices have a collection of camera features such as improved night mode, more refined portrait modes, etc. If you’re looking at it from the perspective of a higher number of features, then perhaps the OnePlus 12R wins, but in every other way including video recording, the Nothing Phone (2a) camera performs better.

Compare OnePlus 12R and Nothing Phone 2a (1)

Image: The Nothing Phone (2a) interface compared to the more basic OnePlus 12R

The Battery and Memory Specs of the Two Devices

The OnePlus 12R battery specifications include a massive 5,500 mAh battery which is capable of powering your daily routine consistently without any interruption. The Super VOOC 100W fast charging also boosts the device considerably, and you’re guaranteed 100 percent charge in about 26 minutes. These specs are impossible to keep up with, especially in the mid-range category. The Nothing Phone (2a)’s 5,000 mAh battery is not bad either and it offers 45W fast charging capabilities with 50 percent charge guaranteed in 23 minutes. These specs are not bad on their own, but when placed in the context of a OnePlus 12R vs Nothing Phone (2a) comparison, the OnePlus version wins easily.

In terms of memory, the OnePlus 12R has an 8GB LPDDR5X RAM with 128 GB UFS 3.1 storage. There is another version with 16GB RAM and 256GB storage available as well. The Nothing Phone (2a) base memory is similar, with 8GB LPDDR4X RAM with 128 GB UFS 2.2 storage. For those going through the developer program in the U.S., the 12GB RAM and 256GB storage model is the only one available.

Additional Details of the Device Specs

One of the more disappointing details of the Nothing Phone (2a) is its IP56 rating compared to the OnePlus 12R’s IP64. You’ll still have some dust and water resistance, but not at the level you’d expect from a smartphone in 2024. Apart from this, the most interesting detail of the Nothing Phone (2a) specs is the availability of the Glyph light-up interface on the back panel of the device. If you’re looking for something that goes beyond a basic smartphone, the Nothing range of launches gives you an innovative novelty factor that makes you love the device more than you would without it. While the glyphs on the latest smartphone are a lot more sparse than the original Nothing Phone, they still give developers something to work with, customizing it for various notifications and adapting it to different levels of interactivity.

In terms of price, the OnePlus 12R vs Nothing Phone (2a) comparison is pretty obviously in favor of the Nothing Phone (2a). The OnePlus 12R is priced at $499.99 USD but a version with 16GB RAM and 256GB storage is available at $599.99 USD. The Nothing Phone (2a) price is set at a much lower $349 USD for a 12GB/256GB variant of the phone. Considering the OnePlus 12R vs Nothing Phone (2a) comparison, the Nothing Phone (2a) price is unbeatable.

Overall, the Nothing Phone (2a) stands out for its design specs and camera quality, but if you want a gimmick-free, no-nonsense device with a good battery, the OnePlus 12R wins this round. We might be partial to the Nothing Phone (2a) specs but that does not have to be the right answer for you.