OnePlus launched its latest OnePlus 9 series of smartphones back in March. The flagship devices of the series, OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro, both are powered by the top-of-the-line Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 SoC. Snapdragon 888 is the company’s flagship processor and offers a significant boost in both CPU and GPU performance over its predecessor. While the processor is amongst one of the best the company has to offer, a new report by AnandTech states that the company might have made some unethical tweaks that favoured the device performance on benchmark apps.
According to the report, the devices have discrepancies in the performance of several apps. It states that OnePlus is blacklisting popular applications away from its fastest cores, causing a slow down in typical workloads. The publication performed tests to confirm that popular non-benchmark apps get notably reduced performance. Whereas, the tests confirmed that the benchmark and other unknown apps get full performance.
Limiting the phones from offering the maximum performance to popular apps could in theory help the device conserve battery life. However, this would make the benchmark scores useless, as they are based on the best performance the phone has to deliver with the CPUs top-performing cores.
After the report was released, Geekbench has announced that it is delisting the OnePlus 9 series from its Android Benchmark Chart. It has also stated that it will be taking a look at earlier OnePlus smartphones and investigating them to see if those handsets also manipulate performance in the same way. And if they are found out to be unethically tweaking performance, they will also be delisted.
It’s disappointing to see OnePlus handsets making performance decisions based on application identifiers rather than application behavior. We view this as a form of benchmark manipulation. We’ve delisted the OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro from our Android Benchmark chart. https://t.co/G40wmWeg7o
— Geekbench (@geekbench) July 6, 2021
OnePlus has not revealed any official statement about this. To recall, Realme, another BBK Electronics brand, was recently found manipulating numbers on benchmark websites with its Realme GT 5G smartphone and was banned from AnTuTu.