OnePlus has backed out of a decision to join its software with that of Oppo’s. And that’s really good news if you’re a fan of the upcoming OnePlus 10 Pro or the company’s other premium and mid-range phones.
This was one of several points mentioned in a forum post written by Pete Lau (opens in new tab), OnePlus’ founder, as part of the company's MWC 2022 (opens in new tab) announcements. While the news of OnePlus 10 Pro’s global launch in March or its upcoming 150W charging tech is more obviously exciting, having OnePlus confirm that it’s keeping a key part of its identity is a relief that will have a big impact for several years to come.
After merging with stablemate Oppo last year, OnePlus fans feared their favorite company would drop its own OxygenOS version of Android and move to the Oppo-made ColorOS. While the two companies were initially planning to adopt a unified operating system, with the Chinese version of the OnePlus 10 Pro launching with ColorOS, feedback from OnePlus fans made it clear that this was an unpopular idea. As a business that makes a big deal about pleasing its dedicated users and involving them in discussions about phone features, it’s not a surprise that OnePlus decided to reverse course.
Oppo and OnePlus' two operating systems will now be built from a unified code base, but will remain separate. Specifically, OxygenOS is going to be a more global-focussed product than ColorOS, and will maintain its unique look and lighter design, as you can see in this graphic from the forum post.
ColorOS, to be clear, isn’t a bad version of Android. Indeed the new Oppo Find X5 Pro is a fine phone that works well with it. But you can understand why OnePlus should maintain its own software, especially if the two brands continue to operate semi-independently.
As for OxygenOS 13, the Android 13 update for OnePlus' software, this will apparently be another update that focuses on the OnePlus’ oft-cited “fast and smooth” and “burdenless” goals. The OnePlus 10 Pro will use OxygenOS 12.1 though, rather than OxygenOS 13.