As September draws closer, Android enthusiasts are looking forward to the first stable release of Android 11. Similar to last year, OnePlus is up on its heels to deliver the Android update as fast to its users, albeit with some tweaks. Developer previews of Oxygen OS 11 have been around for some months and today, the third version drops. The third beta of Oxygen OS 11 brings some incremental upgrades to Oxygen OS UI in line with the Hydrogen OS update for China.
OnePlus is following Samsung’s footsteps by making the UI easier on the hands. A few years ago, Samsung introduced its OneUI intending to improve reachability. OnePlus is now doing the same with Oxygen OS 11 with a similarly inspired design. The UI options and elements are concentrated towards the bottom end of the display. This makes it easier to reach the options without using two hands.
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Apart from the OneUI-inspired layout, Oxygen OS 11 beta 3 also brings massive upgrades to the weather app, gallery, notes and launcher. The OnePlus Sans font has been revised to improve readability. The much-talked-about Always On Display feature makes it to the beta 3 with 11 new designs. The live wallpapers now change according to the time of the day.
Similar to some other custom ROMs, Oxygen OS now brings the ability to schedule dark mode. OnePlus has also added a shortcut to toggle dark mode in the Quick Settings. Moreover, there are three new Zen Mode themes with more timing options. There’s an option to experience Zen Mode with your friends. The gallery app now shows stories similar to Google Photos. Users will be treated to weekly stories based on photos and videos.
Currently, these features are limited to the developer beta and you need to install it manually. Do note that beta builds are buggy and hence, you should not try it on your primary phone. That said, OnePlus might release the public beta for Oxygen OS 11 on the same day as Google released Android 11 to its Pixel devices. The betas are restricted to OnePlus 8 series devices and these will get it before other OnePlus devices.
OnePlus 8 prices and features
The OnePlus 8 series spawns two models this year at different price points. The OnePlus 8 starts at Rs 41,999 for the base variant with 6GB RAM as well as 128GB storage. You get a 6.5-inch 90Hz OLED display, Snapdragon 865 5G chip, Oxygen OS 10, 4300mAh battery with 30W wired charging, and a 48-megapixel main camera.
The OnePlus 8 Pro starts at Rs 54,999 with 8GB RAM and 128GB storage. The Pro gets you a 120Hz Quad HD+ display, a 48-megapixel Sony IMX689 sensor for the main camera, IP68 rating and 30W wireless charging. You can get the OnePlus 8 Pro in three colours.