The release of a new version of Android is always a bittersweet event for smartphone fans; while each subsequent release packs in exciting new features, there's a painful waiting game to endure; unless you've got a Pixel or Android One device, you could be waiting months for the maker of your phone to release the software with their UI sitting on top – and in some cases, phones never receive the update. Compared to iOS, where Apple is committed to supporting all of its phones for as long as possible, it's a sorry state of affairs.
However, it would seem that OnePlus is keen to buck this trend by fast-tracking the tasty Android Pie update for its popular OnePlus 6 handset. The company has confirmed that it is rolling out Android Pie to its flagship as we speak, and if you own one, you should see an OTA update for OxygenOS 9.0 – the firm's unique version of Google's OS – arriving on your device very soon indeed.
While the UI will have the usual OnePlus look and feel, it will also come with Android Pie's selection of improvements and enhancements. These include new transitions, UI tweaks, HEIF support, manual theme selection and an iPhone X-style gesture navigation system. There's also adaptive battery functionality, which got Google into a spot of bother recently.
OnePlus should be commended for rolling out this update in such quick fashion; Android Pie only officially launched on August 24th. What's even more impressive is that the company has committed to releasing the update on its OnePlus 5T, OnePlus 5, OnePlus 3T and OnePlus 3 handsets, too – the latter pair were released in 2016, making them two of the oldest devices to get a slice of Pie. No timeline has been confirmed for when these older handsets will get the update, but owners should take heart from the fact that it has been confirmed at all.
It would seem that Google's Project Treble – the company's attempt to curb fragmentation in the Android sector – has played a big part in speeding up these updates. Trebles support was finally rolled out to the OnePlus 5T and 5 this year, while the OnePlus 6 shipped with Treble support baked-in. Hopefully, this means that moving forward, we'll see more timely updates across the board when it comes to Android phones – something which would solve one of our biggest complaints regarding the OS.
If you've got a OnePlus 6, then hopefully you've had the update already and are enjoying Pie; if you have an older OnePlus device, just hold tight.