ColorOS 7.1 Review – The Best and Worst of OPPO’s Android OS

WRITTEN BY: supportmymoto.com STAFF

OPPO not too long ago introduced the Discover X2 and Discover X2 Professional initially of March. The 2 smartphones are OPPO’s most premium flagship smartphones but, each when it comes to {hardware} and pricing. Whereas the Discover X2 and X2 Professional are solely the second batch of gadgets in OPPO’s Discover X collection, OPPO isn’t any stranger to flagship smartphones. Final 12 months’s OPPO Reno 10X Zoom was probably the greatest flagship smartphones of 2019, however one space the place that cellphone actually fell brief was within the software program. OPPO’s customized Android software program, often called ColorOS, left a lot to be desired after we reviewed it on the Reno. With ColorOS 7.1 on the brand new OPPO Discover X2 collection, although, OPPO appears to be like to make issues proper with their software program.

It’s no secret that we weren’t followers of ColorOS 6.1 based mostly on Android 9 Pie. It nonetheless felt like OPPO was attempting to imitate iOS relatively than make a singular Android identification. There have been questionable UI components and habits modifications all through the OS, resulting in ColorOS receiving heavy criticism by reviewers. However then OPPO introduced ColorOS 7 based mostly on Android 10, and it was clear proper off the bat that OPPO had made large enhancements.

What precisely does ColorOS 7.0 and its minor revision, ColorOS 7.1, provide on prime of Android 10? Clearly, you get the advantages of Android 10’s new platform options, however OPPO has launched so many further options and habits modifications that you simply received’t discover in inventory Android. Right here is our full evaluation of ColorOS 7.1 in addition to a broad overview of all of the options we like, dislike, and are detached in the direction of.

Disclaimer: OPPO is a sponsor of XDA. OPPO China loaned us a Discover X2 Professional for evaluation, however they didn’t have any enter concerning the content material of this evaluation.


Distinctive Options on the OPPO Discover X2 Professional

Earlier than we dive into our ideas on the total breadth of options provided by OPPO in ColorOS 7.1, right here’s an outline of the options which are distinctive to the OPPO Discover X2 and Discover X2 Professional due to their {hardware}.

OPPO Discover X2 Boards ||| OPPO Discover X2 Professional Boards

Display screen Mild Results – A Alternative for Notification LED

In trimming down the bezels as a lot as doable, OPPO didn’t have sufficient room to position a notification LED on the entrance of the Discover X2 or Discover X2 Professional. In lieu of the notification LED, OPPO has added a brand new “Display screen Mild Results” function that turns the curved edges of the show into notification lighting. While you obtain a notification or incoming cellphone name, the perimeters of the Discover X2 will slowly gentle up. Right here’s a short video demonstrating this function in motion:


It’s a easy function but it surely does the job whereas trying nice. It’s not a real alternative to the notification LED, although, since Display screen Mild Results don’t repeatedly gentle up, which means it’s doable you’ll miss it the primary time. Fortunately, although, ColorOS has an All the time on Show function so that you’ll all the time be capable of shortly see if there are any pending notifications.

O1 Extremely Imaginative and prescient Engine and Pure Tone Show – The Makings of a Nice Show

The O1 Extremely Imaginative and prescient Engine is OPPO’s time period for the show processing engine that artificially will increase the framerates of movies utilizing MEMC in addition to converts SDR video to HDR. The 2 options are powered by the Iris 5 chip from Pixelworks, so the visible processing is {hardware} accelerated. MEMC, or Movement Estimation and Movement Compensation, is a body interpolation approach that inserts frames into movies, boosting the framerate of the unique video. Most films and tv reveals are shot at 24 or 30fps, however with MEMC, they are often performed again at 60 and even 120fps on the OPPO Discover X2 and X2 Professional. With the additional frames inserted into the video, sure content material will seem visually smoother. OPPO needs this modification to seem delicate relatively than visually jarring, and it undoubtedly works. Hold an eye fixed out throughout lengthy single-takes, wide-panning photographs, fast-moving motion scenes, or animated movies if you wish to see the place MEMC has probably the most noticeable impact. The one main caveat with the function is that enabling Video Movement Enhancement to 120fps requires setting the show decision to FHD+ relatively than the native WQHD+. As for the SDR to HDR video conversion, this impact is most noticeable when watching movies with a number of wildlife or nature photographs. Scenes with a number of animals and crops will seem extra colourful and vibrant as a result of enlargement of the colour gamut.

Video Movement Enhancement doesn’t assist each video app, although. OPPO maintains a whitelist that they use to find out whether or not boosting the body rate to 60 or 120fps is supported. Whereas a lot of the supported video providers are Chinese language, there are a handful of worldwide apps which are supported. Amazon Prime Video, VLC, and MX Participant are supported for enhancing the body rate to 60fps, whereas Netflix and YouTube are supported for enhancing the body rate to 120fps. Should you’re struggling to note the body boosting, then strive watching both of these two YouTube movies: [1] or [2]. The impact ought to be very noticeable in each of those movies. I like to recommend OPPO add a toggle within the settings that, when enabled, reveals an overlay of some variety telling the consumer that the video is being enhanced. A program that I sometimes run on my PC known as “SVP” (Clean Video Venture) reveals the consumer when it’s working by displaying a message within the backside left-hand nook of the video.

 

Pure Tone Show is one other wonderful function that’s at present unique to the OPPO Discover X2 and X2 Professional. The function takes benefit of the RGB colour sensors on the machine to measure the ambient colour temperature and subsequently alter the show’s white steadiness. What this implies is that the colour temperature of the Discover X2’s show really modifications based mostly on the encompassing lighting. This implies the show will keep a “paper-like” look below completely different lighting circumstances, which I discover makes the Discover X2’s show actually comfy on the eyes and simple to learn. Most telephones can solely change the brightness of the show based mostly on the ambient lighting, not the colour temperature.

The remainder of the options we’re going to cowl could be present in a number of OPPO smartphones, so we received’t concentrate on solely the Discover X2 from right here on out. Nonetheless, our experiences with every of the options will nonetheless be based mostly on our utilization of them whereas reviewing the Discover X2 Professional.


What I Like About ColorOS 7.1

A Model New UI – Colourful however not gaudy

In our evaluation of the OPPO Reno2, we famous that our greatest downside with that machine was not the software program options however relatively how the software program appeared. Gone is the bizarre grey overlay within the notification middle, the iOS-like Fast Setting tiles, and the out-of-place multitasking menu. As a substitute, OPPO has taken the look of AOSP and added just a few helpful tweaks. A brand new, giant clock is added with the climate above the Fast Setting tiles once they’re expanded, for instance, which is one thing that we’ve seen with Samsung’s OneUI. The latest apps overview appears to be like precisely because it ought to with giant, horizontally scrolling app previews.

Even the icons have acquired a complete revamp. The icons within the top-level Settings specifically now look superb, whereas the icons all through the UI are additionally attractive. Magnificence is subjective, although, so in case you aren’t a fan of the inventory icons, you’ll be able to customise them. Within the launcher settings, you’ll be able to set the icon type to both the default ColorOS choice, Materials Design type, “Pebble” type, or use the customized “Artwork+” icons that may even be additional custom-made to vary the icon form, rounded nook radius, or icon dimension.

A reworked UI was badly wanted, and ColorOS 7.1 has undoubtedly introduced it.

Compelled darkish mode

ColorOS 7.1 builds on prime of Android 10’s built-in system-wide darkish mode by including a darkish mode scheduler and an choice to drive darkish mode for chosen third-party purposes. The previous function was solely not too long ago added to Pixel telephones with the second Pixel Function Drop, whereas the latter function is barely doable on Pixel with a third-party software known as DarQ. Oddly, ColorOS doesn’t let you choose sure purposes to drive darkish mode in, comparable to Google Hangouts.

One-Handed Mode

The OPPO Discover X2 Professional is a big smartphone, so utilizing it one-handed isn’t actually doable for most individuals. Fortunately, the one-handed mode in ColorOS 7.1 makes it doable. As soon as activated, the display screen shrinks to the underside left or proper nook, dramatically lowering how far it’s a must to stretch your thumb to faucet on the display screen. In contrast to different one-handed mode options, you received’t by chance depart this mode by tapping outdoors of the shrunken space – OPPO disabled that. Nonetheless, the one option to toggle one-handed mode is through a Fast Setting tile, which type of defeats the aim since accessing Fast Settings is tough to do with just one hand.

All the time on Show – Easy but efficient

Identical to with earlier OPPO smartphones, there may be an All the time on Show function current on the OPPO Discover X2. There’s one oddity with the function, although, and that’s how one can’t really allow it at all occasions. You select a time vary for when it’s energetic, and through that point it could show the present time, date, battery degree, and notification icons throughout that point vary. There’s a fairly straightforward workaround for this, although, and it’s simply setting the beginning and finish occasions to be a minute aside. One small gripe I’ve with the implementation, although, is that it pulls notification icons from the app’s icon relatively than the precise notification, which results in issues just like the Google App icon showing when it’s really only a climate replace.

ColorOS 7.1 on the OPPO Find X2 Pro

 

Whereas the All the time on Show is barely customizable in which you can choose the clock type, there’s not a lot else that may be custom-made. In distinction, Huawei, and particularly Samsung, present much more customization of the All the time on Show.

Enhanced screenshot and display screen recording choices

I take and share a number of screenshots on-line (as proven on this evaluation), so I’ve all the time hoped that Google would add higher screenshot instruments in Android. Whereas that appears to be coming to Android 11, ColorOS 7.1 already implements a number of good screenshot instruments. As an illustration, you’ll be able to select to delete the unique screenshot after enhancing and saving it, take scrolling screenshots, use gestures to take screenshots, and take a partial screenshot. Tapping on the mini screenshot preview that seems brings you to an editor UI with 5 choices: Share, Doodle, Edit, Lengthy screenshot, or Delete. The doodle choice permits you to shortly draw on the picture with out opening the full-fledged screenshot editor. The Edit choice brings you to the Images app the place you’ll be able to edit the screenshot by cropping, rotating, blurring, and extra. The Lengthy Screenshot choice does a intelligent tackle the scrolling screenshot—relatively than having the system slowly begin scrolling down till you inform it to cease, it waits so that you can scroll down as a lot as you wish to cowl within the picture. You’ll be able to alternatively share the screenshot or begin the Lengthy Screenshot motion by swiping up or down on the screenshot preview respectively.

I additionally do display screen recordings every so often, which is one space the place OEMs excel at however Google fails at. ColorOS 7.1 has a built-in display screen recorder that may file the interior audio, which is nice information for players seeking to share gameplay clips. Sadly, you’ll be able to’t file from each the microphone and inside audio on the similar time, so you’ll be able to’t file a voice-over throughout gameplay. You’ll be able to, nonetheless, file video from the entrance digicam whereas recording audio. The standard settings are fairly restricted, no less than on the OPPO Discover X2 Professional—you’ll be able to solely go as much as 1080p at 14Mbps. There’s no choice to file at 120fps or QHD+ decision. Yet another factor I’ll observe is which you can pause recordings and resume them later, which might prevent time in enhancing.

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I can’t present the floating display screen recorder toolbar by way of screenshots because it doesn’t seem in them, but it surely’s principally a small bar that sticks to the left or proper aspect of the display screen. There are 4 buttons: Report, Settings, Shut, and Reduce. The Reduce button hides and unhides the Settings and Shut buttons. The bar could be moved wherever on display screen, although it’s going to all the time snap to the left or proper edges. While you’re recording, the bar turns extra clear, minimizes by default, and the Shut button turns right into a Pause button. Display screen recordings are saved in the identical folder as screenshots, which means /DCIM/Screenshots.

Extra permission management and privateness settings

There are a few neat options that assist defend your information and limit what apps can entry. Right here’s an inventory of options/modifications that I discovered to be most helpful:

  • You’ll be able to disable community entry fully for chosen purposes by going to Settings > SIM Card & Cell Information > Information Utilization > Community Permissions. Alternatively, you’ll be able to disable both WiFi or cell information entry for chosen purposes. The flexibility to limit background cell information entry is a function of inventory Android, but it surely’s good to see that ColorOS 7.1 permits you to absolutely block community entry for apps you don’t belief.
  • In Settings > Privateness, you’ll be able to allow “private data safety” which supplies empty name historical past, contacts, messages, and occasions data to apps that request them. This enables apps that request this data to proceed to run with out exposing any of your private data to them. This can be a function we’ve seen in customized ROMs and Xposed Modules earlier than, so it’s good to see it seem in OEM software program.
  • ColorOS 7.1 protects you in opposition to pseudo base station hijacks, or no less than that’s what OPPO says it does. I’ve no approach of really testing this, although. In concept, this function will defend your machine from connecting to a mobile base station created by an attacker relatively than a cell service.
  • If for no matter motive you don’t belief your keyboard app, then chances are you’ll benefit from the “Safe Keyboard” function which is a barebones, offline keyboard app that solely seems whenever you’ve targeted on a textual content area for password or monetary element entry. This function could be toggled in Settings > Extra Settings > Keyboard & Enter Methodology.
  • The “Stop Display screen Captures” function will block screenshots and display screen recordings when utilizing any of ColorOS 7.1’s privacy-related options. Apps can already do that in the event that they declare the FLAG_SECURE flag for his or her home windows, however this function extends assist to extra apps which may be delicate.
  • ColorOS 7.1 actively warns the consumer about makes an attempt to file audio/photos within the background. Since Android 9 Pie, apps can’t entry the microphone or digicam once they’re working within the background. The request is silently blocked with no indication proven to the consumer. ColorOS 7.1 expands upon this by displaying a immediate within the standing bar when an app makes an attempt to make use of these permissions within the background.

OPPO Recreation Area

With the expansion in cell gaming, it’s no shock that OEMs have put a big emphasis on enhancing the gaming expertise, although how that’s completed differs from firm to firm. ColorOS has OPPO’s Recreation Area instrument, which lets you allow the cellphone’s efficiency mode and block potential annoyances comparable to cellphone calls and textual content messages whereas gaming. It additionally provides an overlay to your video games so you’ll be able to shortly entry primary features and skim necessary messages from apps like WhatsApp and Fb Messenger. It reveals you different data too, like the present battery degree and sign energy. You’ll be able to add any recreation to the Recreation Area launcher after which you launch them such as you would every other software.

OPPO’s Digicam App – Clear and easy-to-use

The OPPO Digicam UI is clear and full of massive buttons. I actually like which you can swipe left and proper both on the tabs or within the viewfinder to modify digicam modes. Some digicam apps solely assist you to change digicam modes by tapping or swiping on a part of the UI, which is annoying when you’ll be able to solely use one hand to manage the digicam. Talking of accessibility, I additionally like which you can all the time see the present zoom degree, and you’ll even faucet devoted buttons to vary between the very best zoom ranges. Nonetheless, you sadly can’t double-tap wherever on the display screen to zoom in or out. You’ll be able to faucet on the display screen to concentrate on an space after which transfer the publicity slider up and down to vary the publicity degree, though I want the slider was a bit larger so it will be simpler to hit with my thumb. I’ve combined emotions about the remainder of the digicam modes and options within the OPPO Digicam app.

I like that:

  • You’ll be able to faucet and maintain the shutter button to take burst photographs, that are all grouped collectively within the gallery app.
  • The evening mode has a devoted tripod button to assist you to take longer publicity photographs.
  • The AI suggestions don’t annoyingly drive modifications to the present digicam mode, so that you received’t must combat the AI to forestall it from altering to portrait mode or evening mode whenever you’re about to take an excellent photograph.
  • There’s a built-in doc scanner in case you use the “textual content scanner” mode.
  • There’s an “knowledgeable” mode within the digicam app to finely-control varied digicam parameters.

I don’t like that:

  • You’ll be able to’t take a brief video by tapping and holding on the shutter button in video mode.
  • The digicam app doesn’t assist Google Lens strategies, so it’s a must to manually change to Google Lens within the “extra” view if you wish to scan one thing.
  • There isn’t a option to manually change to the macro mode when utilizing the primary digicam. This could result in irritating conditions the place you’re attempting to get the macro mode to activate on a close-up topic.
  • You’ll be able to’t choose the body rate for slow-motion options. This can be a fairly customary function in different OEMs’ digicam apps.

The Settings within the OPPO Digicam app are fairly customary. You’ll be able to customise the quantity key habits to behave as a shutter button, change the zoom degree, or change the quantity. You surprisingly can’t disable the quantity key, although, so that you’ll must watch out the way you mount the cellphone on a tripod. In Settings, it’s also possible to change the default selfie orientation, allow a faucet on the viewfinder to take a photograph, present a watermark with the machine title/location/time, and toggle video high quality settings.

Enhanced full-screen gesture choices

Google requires all OEMs implement Google’s full-screen gestures in Android 10. Thus, the Pixel’s full-screen gestures are current in ColorOS 7.1. You’ll be able to allow these gestures by choosing “Swipe Gestures from Each Sides” in Settings > Comfort Instruments > Navigation Buttons. What’s extra is which you can additionally select to cover the gesture bar on the backside, disable vibration when performing the again gesture, make the again gesture additionally provoke a “change to earlier app” motion in case you maintain for longer, and make the again gesture tougher to carry out in case you’re watching movies in fullscreen panorama mode.

In Settings > Comfort Instruments, it’s also possible to allow a shortcut to launch Google Assistant through a fast maintain of the ability button. I discover this to be preferable over swiping diagonally upward from the underside corners to launch the Google Assistant. There does seem like a bug the place the gesture trace bars within the backside corners nonetheless appear to point out themselves though the nook swipe gestures to launch Assistant aren’t accessible in ColorOS. Subsequent, in Settings > Extra Settings > Keyboard & Enter Methodology, you’ll be able to select whether or not to spice up the place of the keyboard app when utilizing gestures, so that you received’t must stretch your thumb all the best way to the underside of the display screen. Lastly, it’s doable to make use of these gestures with third-party launchers like Nova Launcher, no less than this was the case on my Discover X2 Professional working the newest ColorOS 7.1 launch. Notably, this isn’t doable in One UI 2.0 or 2.1 for the newest Samsung Galaxy telephones.

Should you don’t like Google’s Android 10 gestures, even with OPPO’s enhancements to them in ColorOS 7.1, then it’s also possible to allow OPPO’s “Swipe-up Gestures” in the identical settings menu. The primary distinction between Google’s fullscreen gestures and OPPO’s is that the again gesture on OPPO’s model includes a swipe up from the underside relatively than swiping inwards from the edges. If you’re pissed off with by chance going again whenever you meant to open an app’s sidebar menu, then chances are you’ll want these gestures.

Facial recognition choices

OPPO, like many OEMs, provides software-based facial recognition on its gadgets. Whereas the OPPO Discover X had {hardware} for safe 3D facial recognition, no different OPPO machine helps 3D facial recognition. Thus, this software-based facial recognition shouldn’t be as safe because the Discover X’s implementation, however fortuitously, OPPO permits you to determine if you wish to use it for really unlocking the machine. If you wish to solely use safer authentication strategies, then you’ll be able to disable facial recognition for unlocking and solely use it for App Lock or Non-public Secure.

Though the facial recognition isn’t really safe, OPPO nonetheless went forward and added a toggle to make it so your eyes must be open for the cellphone to unlock. What’s extra, it’s also possible to mix the facial recognition and fingerprint unlock in order that your machine will solely unlock whenever you fulfill each authentication strategies.

OPPO Calm down

In recent times, corporations have taken an energetic method in selling the digital wellbeing of their customers. Android 10 brings Google’s Digital Wellbeing options to just about each machine that launches with it, however OEMs are nonetheless implementing their very own instruments, too. Within the case of OPPO, there’s the OPPO Calm down app. It’s not simply one other “lock down your cellphone and concentrate on the true world” type of software. Relatively, the app supplies a bunch of music that can assist you de-stress, ambient sounds, and respiration workouts which will assist relieve some nervousness. Certain yow will discover all of those by way of third-party purposes or on YouTube, but it surely’s good to have this instrument proper at your fingerprints from the second you flip in your machine.

Notifications are much less disruptive and extra customizable

Should you determine to answer a notification whereas shopping in panorama mode, then the default keyboard (in addition to Gboard) will open in a particular floating mode that received’t take up the total display screen. Should you get a notification whereas viewing fullscreen content material, comparable to movies, then the heads-up notification is proven in a tiny, principally clear bar.

You cannot solely present the battery proportion within the standing bar however it’s also possible to present the real-time community pace. You can even present the info utilization within the notification drawer in case you’re apprehensive about hitting your month-to-month information cap.

Sensible 5G options – Pondering forward of the curve

Whereas Android is simply barely getting round to including 5G APIs, OPPO has gone forward and launched a number of 5G-related options in ColorOS 7.1:

  • “Sensible 5G” – ColorOS can “robotically change between 5G and 4G to increase battery life.” OPPO says this determination is made based mostly on the temperature (battery? CPU?), battery degree, community pace, and utilization eventualities. OPPO says this ensures that 5G is used just for the “most demanding duties in order that it received’t drain your battery.”
  • 5G Cell + 5GHz Wi-Fi – When ColorOS 7.1 detects obtain requests from a number of apps, it’s going to use each 5G and 5GHz Wi-Fi to course of the downloads. That is hilariously overkill at a most pace of as much as 5.9Gbps.
  • Twin Mode 5G – The Discover X2 can robotically change between NSA (Non-standalone) and SA (Standalone) 5G networks. Since most 5G networks are NSA, this function isn’t significantly helpful but.
  • Sensible cell choice – OPPO says that “AI-enabled modeling algorithms” permit their telephones to extra shortly seek for and connect with 5G networks. I’m undecided how “AI” is concerned right here, although.

5G rollout continues to be in its infancy, with the overwhelming majority of 5G networks solely broadcasting on slower sub-6GHz frequencies and never the upper throughput mmWave frequencies. Thus, these options appear (or relatively, are) pointless for the overwhelming majority of customers. Nonetheless, in case you dwell in a metropolis the place sub-6GHz 5G is rolled out, then chances are you’ll already be linked to it every day (no less than, you could be in case you aren’t caught at dwelling resulting from COVID-19). OPPO confirmed me information from their lab assessments that present that the Discover X2 Professional saves between half-hour to roughly 1.5 hours of battery life when utilizing the good 5G options versus repeatedly sustaining 5G connectivity. With the mixture of the 6.7-inch 120Hz show, Qualcomm Snapdragon 865, and multi-camera array sucking away energy, each minute of further battery life you will get will matter.

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Different options that I like

There are different options in ColorOS 7.1 that I like, however within the curiosity of trimming down the size of this evaluation, right here’s a fast overview/checklist of them.

Floating “Sensible Sidebar”

App Locker

  • Should you don’t need your nosy roommate to snoop in your cellphone, then you’ll be able to lock sure apps behind an extra layer of safety with App Lock, obtainable in Settings > Privateness. You’ll be able to require the consumer to confirm their identification with fingerprint or face earlier than they will open your locked apps. You’ll be able to both have this verification occur each time the app is open, or you may make it to the place verification shouldn’t be required once more till after you lock the cellphone.

Comfort gestures

  • In Settings > Comfort Instruments > Gestures & Motions, you’ll be able to allow some helpful gestures. A few of my favorites embrace “double-tap to show display screen on,” which lets you wake the cellphone to the lock display screen from the All the time on Show, “elevate to wake” to show the display screen on whenever you carry the cellphone, “auto ear pickup calls” to reply cellphone calls whenever you carry the cellphone to your ear throughout an incoming name, and “auto change to ear receiver” which disables the speakerphone whenever you maintain your cellphone to your ear.
  • The opposite gestures, which contain drawing symbols or letters along with your fingers whereas the display screen is off, are simply not that helpful for me. The gesture to manage music is finicky and solely appears to work with the OPPO Music app. The opposite gestures allow you to unlock the cellphone, name a contact, or launch an app. Sadly, there’s a slight delay in performing a gesture since ColorOS animates the trail of the gesture you drew earlier than doing the motion. I don’t see myself utilizing these gestures fairly often contemplating unlocking the cellphone is already very fast.

Recycle Bin and Non-public Secure

  • Constructed-in Recycle Bin for Images: The Recycle Bin on Microsoft Home windows can prevent from by chance completely deleting necessary information. Whereas it’s not as strong on ColorOS 7.1, the Images app can prevent from by chance deleting your treasured images. The Images app has a “not too long ago deleted” album that accommodates picture information you delete, both from inside the Images app or from different apps (that’s, in case you allow “file safety” in Settings > Privateness). File safety solely appears to backup photos saved within the folders for Digicam, Screenshots, WeChat, and QQ. Information I deleted in WhatsApp and Telegram folders weren’t being saved by file safety.
  • Non-public Secure: A hidden album which you can put your personal photos, audio information, paperwork, movies, and different information in. You’ll be able to defend entry to your information with a PIN, password, fingerprint, or facial recognition. You’ll be able to entry all hidden information within the Non-public Secure by going to Settings > Privateness > Non-public Secure or simply your hidden images by opening the Images app and long-pressing on the “Images” tab.

Soloop – A built-in brief video editor

Quick share sheet

  • OPPO tweaked Android’s share sheet to dramatically enhance its pace in ColorOS 7.1. One of many greatest modifications is the removing of Direct Share targets, which Android populates each time you open the share sheet.
  • The share sheet additionally integrates OPPO Share, a file-sharing answer that helps shortly sending and receiving information to and from OPPO, Realme, Xiaomi, and Vivo gadgets.
  • Sadly, OPPO eliminated the preview within the share sheet, so you’ll be able to’t see what picture you’re about to share. OPPO additionally made the share sheet scroll horizontally relatively than vertically, which might make sharing content material annoying when you have a number of apps put in.

Dolby Atmos audio processing

  • Dolby’s fame for audio processing speaks for itself. The inclusion of Dolby Atmos guarantees a stellar audio listening expertise. Whereas it could not swimsuit audiophiles, Dolby Atmos tuning will likely be appreciated by most common customers on the market.

Sensible Driving

  • In Settings > Sensible Providers, you’ll be able to allow the “Sensible Driving” function. Regardless of its title, there’s nothing actually “good” about it. Nonetheless, it’s a helpful function that I can’t discover a lot fault in, besides that I wanted it did extra. Proper now, you’ll be able to set “Sensible Driving” to dam all alerts together with incoming calls, textual content messages, and heads-up notifications everytime you connect with a Bluetooth automotive package. ColorOS can detect sure paired Bluetooth gadgets as automotive kits, however it’s also possible to manually add any beforehand paired Bluetooth machine as a automotive package. “Sensible Driving” is ok as is, however I feel OPPO ought to take some cues from Google right here. On the Pixel 3, 3a, and 4, the Driving Mode can robotically activate based mostly in your location and readings from the accelerometer, and it could additionally robotically launch the Android Auto app when driving is detected.

Child Area

  • When you have a toddler and wish to allow them to play some video games in your machine or a tool you’re planning on giving to them, then you should utilize the Child Area function in Settings > Privateness. With Child Area, you’ll be able to restrict which purposes could be accessed, how lengthy the cellphone can be utilized earlier than it locks out, and whether or not cell community ought to be enabled. When Child Area is enabled, ColorOS 7.1 blocks receiving premium SMS so your child can’t rack up the invoice, and it additionally blocks the modification of system settings and set up of apps so children can’t escape Child Area’s restrictions. If a toddler makes an attempt to exit Child Area earlier than their allotted time is up, then they must enter the machine password to exit. Child Area could appear a bit redundant now that Household Hyperlink’s parental controls are actually built-in into Digital Wellbeing, which can also be current in ColorOS 7.1, however extra choices are all the time good.

World clock widget with twin clock assist

  • In our linked world, it’s handy understanding what time it’s in different components of the world. At XDA, I regularly must know what time it’s in Delhi or Beijing, so I’m joyful that the inventory clock app in ColorOS 7.1 has a world clock widget. Certain I can obtain a third-party app from the Play Retailer to do that, however I would like not having redundant apps on my machine.

Climate adaptive alarm ringtone

  • One of many ringtone choices when setting an alarm within the Clock app is “climate adaptive.” This feature modifications the alarm ringtone based mostly on the climate situation when the alarm goes off. It’s a pleasant option to hold the alarm sound contemporary so that you don’t get too used to it whereas additionally priming you to pay attention to right this moment’s climate circumstances.

Quantity button habits customization

  • Android 9 Pie made the default habits of the quantity buttons to manage media quantity. Should you want how issues was once, then you’ll be able to change the quantity buttons to manage the ringer quantity in ColorOS 7.1. This function is offered in Settings > Sound & Vibration > Default Perform for Quantity Buttons.

Automated on/off

  • Should you neglect to reboot your machine now and again, then this function will care for that for you. Restarting your cellphone perhaps as soon as per week will help in case your cellphone begins to really feel unbearably gradual. I’ve seen uptimes of weeks and even months on some relations’ gadgets, and normally, a fast reboot helps their gadgets really feel a bit snappier.

Connection Administration for Wi-fi Hotspots

  • Should you use hotspot performance quite a bit to attach your laptop computer to the Web, then chances are you’ll like what ColorOS 7.1 provides when it comes to hotspot connectivity administration. You’ll be able to restrict what number of gadgets can connect with your community and in addition set an information restrict that, when reached, disables the hotspot.
  • Along with cell information tethering, ColorOS 7.1 additionally lets you lengthen your Wi-Fi reference to Wi-Fi Tethering. You can even tether through USB or Bluetooth.

Software program updater

  • OPPO publishes downloads for all its ColorOS releases on an internet web page. You’ll be able to obtain one in all these releases, place it on the foundation of the interior storage, after which open the “Software program Replace” part in Settings to provoke the replace. Should you import an OPPO machine, this will help you get updates with out having to attend for a rollout. Individuals who purchase Huawei or Honor gadgets outdoors of their meant areas will understand how painful it’s to attend for an replace to roll out.

Issues I dislike in ColorOS 7.1

Whereas OPPO has made main strides in enhancing ColorOS, there are nonetheless just a few areas the place they’ve to enhance. Essentially the most egregious points stem from how ColorOS modifies core Android habits, typically resulting in annoying and even detrimental results. OPPO shouldn’t be the one OEM that makes these errors, however they’re nonetheless value calling out as they forestall me from contemplating ColorOS superior to different OEM skins like ASUS’ ZenUI or OnePlus’ OxygenOS.

My main gripes

All of the pointless habits modifications

ColorOS 7.1 provides a number of options and customizations on prime of Android 10, however listed here are the conditions the place I feel they went too far:

OPPO’s method to automated body rate changes

The Chinese language Reno3 Professional and the Discover X2 and X2 Professional function excessive body rate shows. The Reno3 Professional has a 90Hz show whereas the Discover x2 and X2 Professional have 120Hz shows. In ColorOS 7.1, OPPO makes use of a large checklist of purposes to determine if the show ought to function at 60, 90, or 120Hz. Which means that, sadly, there will likely be sure purposes the place the machine received’t run at excessive body charges. Apps like Discord and Reddit aren’t on the checklist, and therefore once they’re within the foreground, ColorOS forces the show to function at 60Hz. Happily, by selecting “90Hz” or “120Hz” relatively than “auto-select” in refresh rate settings, you’ll be able to drive most purposes to run on the increased refresh rate. I don’t agree with OPPO’s determination to make use of a refresh rate app whitelist relatively than a blacklist like Google, Samsung, OnePlus, and just about each different producer.

Pointless regional restrictions

There’s just one theme obtainable in ColorOS 7.1…no less than that’s the case in case you’re on the EU software program construct like I’m. ColorOS really has a strong theme engine obtainable, and you’ll apply customized themes by way of the Theme Retailer app. For some unusual motive, the Theme Retailer app is regionally restricted! It’s solely obtainable in case you dwell in one of many many Asian nations the place OPPO sells its telephones. I don’t thoughts the default theme, however I’m positive some wish to have extra choices obtainable. I actually don’t like that there’s an arbitrary restriction stopping me from altering the theme, although.

No Desktop Mode

Though most OPPO telephones assist DisplayPort Alternate Mode over USB Sort-C, ColorOS doesn’t present a desktop mode interface, even in ColorOS 7.1. A lot of the blame right here goes to Google for not pushing this in Android, however I’d have anticipated OPPO to supply some type of desktop expertise with a view to compete with Huawei or Samsung.

Reinventing the wheel

Sensible Assistant doesn’t present nearly as good of an expertise because the Google Uncover feed. In OPPO’s inventory launcher app, the “minus one” display screen, which is the default display screen to the left of the primary dwelling display screen, is taken up by “Sensible Assistant.” Sensible Assistant has “dynamic providers” which present and conceal data contextually, comparable to when there are upcoming Google Calendar occasions. You can even add “everlasting providers” which might include the climate, a step counter, and shortcuts to user-selected purposes or favourite contacts. That’s about it, although. The quantity of data you will get from Sensible Assistant pales compared to what Google Uncover provides, particularly if, like us, you utilize a number of Google providers. I’d a lot relatively see Google Uncover take up the minus one display screen than Sensible Assistant, and that is one thing that OEMs can really do!

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Third-party apps can do it higher

I admire that OPPO has included a bunch of its first-party apps so customers don’t have to put in third-party apps from the Google Play Retailer, however a number of the inventory apps in ColorOS are so primary that you simply’re higher off ditching them for third-party options. Listed here are just a few of my selections:

  • App Cloner is a function that may duplicate an app so you’ll be able to run a separate occasion with out affecting the primary app. Nonetheless, it’s needlessly restricted to solely work with a handful of purposes, and in addition, it solely helps putting cloned shortcuts within the inventory launcher software. Of the apps that I’ve put in, I can solely clone Fb, Messenger, Skype, Telegram, WeChat, and WhatsApp. Third-party purposes like Island or Shelter can clone many extra apps in your machine.
  • OPPO’s inventory Recorder app is relatively barebones. It information audio in .mp3 format, permits you to trim audio, add “recording marks” to indicate an necessary level within the recording, share recordings, and set a recording because the system ringtone. Nonetheless, as an precise audio recorder, it’s lacking killer options like transcribing audio as seen within the Pixel or Samsung recorder apps.
  • The inventory Telephone, Contacts, and Messages apps are principally the AOSP Dialer, Contacts, and Messages apps however with OPPO’s coat of paint on prime of them. They provide all the essential options however there aren’t any standout options like in Google’s Dialer, Contacts, or Messages apps. Happily, you’ll be able to change the OPPO Contacts and Messages apps with Google’s choices from the Play Retailer.

My minor Gripes

There are a number of different minor points that I’ve with ColorOS 7.1. I don’t suppose these are value harping on for too lengthy, so right here’s a brief checklist:

  • Screenshots are saved in /DCIM/Screenshots relatively than /Photos/Screenshots like on most gadgets. Due to this, Google Images robotically backs up any screenshot you are taking. Inserting a .nomedia file within the Screenshots folder doesn’t remedy this downside, sadly. That is extra of a problem with Google Images than with ColorOS 7.1 to be honest, but it surely was pointless for OPPO to position screenshots below DCIM, which is meant to solely include images taken from the digicam.
  • OPPO hid Android 10’s gesture sensitivity choices. In Android 10 on Pixel, you’ll be able to enhance or lower the sensitivity of the again gesture. In ColorOS 7.1, you can’t change the again gesture sensitivity except you utilize ADB to toggle one of many overlays offered by Google.
  • The built-in Images app kinds images in chronological order relatively than reverse chronological order, and there’s no option to change the kind. This implies you’ll all the time see your oldest images first relatively than your latest ones. The app additionally doesn’t assist you to disguise sure folders from displaying content material, which suggests you’ll see a number of junk from WhatsApp and Telegram interspersed along with your precise images.
  • Video name beautification is restricted to simply WeChat. I’m no fan of beautification options, however my mom undoubtedly is, so it will be good if this function might work in apps like WhatsApp, Viber, or Google Duo. I’m undecided if that’s even doable, although.
  • You need to manually activate “OTG Connection” in Settings > Extra Settings each time you wish to switch information through USB OTG. The setting turns itself off each 10 minutes. Apart from ColorOS and OxygenOS, no different OEM software program that I exploit does this, so I’m undecided why OPPO nonetheless does this.
  • You’ll be able to’t disable the fingerprint animation. The present choices are all actually flashy, and it will be good to have an choice to simply not must cope with them.
  • Utilizing the fingerprint sensor with the All the time on Show energetic causes all the things to go full brightness. It’s not an important expertise in a darkish room. OnePlus “fastened” this in OxygenOS 10 by hiding the clock whereas the sensor is being touched.
  • Now you can faucet on the quantity slider the place you need the quantity to be with ColorOS 7. This can be a nice change, however this habits wasn’t made to the brightness slider. You continue to have to slip to vary your brightness.
  • OPPO eliminated Demo Mode in Developer Choices. I had to make use of a third-party app (SystemUI Tuner by XDA’s Zachary Wander) to allow Demo Mode.
  • OPPO eliminated the double faucet energy button gesture to launch the digicam app. Whilst you can nonetheless shortly swipe up from the underside right-hand nook of the lockscreen to launch the digicam app, I would like with the ability to shortly launch the digicam with out having to even flip the display screen on.

Issues I’m detached towards

Whereas it’s straightforward to categorize most options and modifications in ColorOS 7.1 into “like” and “dislike” classes, there are just a few options that I’m neither a fan of nor can discover a lot fault in.

oMem, oSense, UFS+, GameBoost – Do they actually work?

OPPO boasts a number of background optimizations in ColorOS 7.1 that supposedly enhance efficiency and reminiscence administration. These embrace:

  • oMem: This “good reminiscence administration” expertise is meant to “[recycle] assets from inactive apps in order that the system can run extra easily.”
  • oSense: This “good scheduling mechanism” is meant to “[give] precedence to front-end and user-related threads for faster response occasions.”
  • UFS+: OPPO talks about “custom-made APIs” for “app builders and machine makers” that purpose to hurry up loading occasions and app installations.
  • Anti-fragmentation: OPPO says that ColorOS 7.1 “deploys a mix of measures, together with utilizing segmentation to scale back fragmentation, setting apart a part of the digital reminiscence for giant reminiscence block requests, and utilizing jemalloc to shortly allocate digital reminiscence to 32-bit processes.” Consequently, OPPO says that “giant reminiscence blocks could be allotted 18% sooner within the bodily reminiscence, and the probability of processes working out of digital reminiscence on GPU is down 93%.”
  • Hyper Enhance: OPPO says that they’ve “improved the contact expertise dramatically,” citing a discount within the common touchscreen response time “by as much as 35%.” Hyper Enhance supposedly screens recreation load “to detect lag prematurely.” Moreover, recreation builders can connect with Hyper Enhance, permitting them to “optimize particular recreation eventualities by reallocating system assets as wanted.” This, in flip, may end up in eventualities loading sooner and enhancing recreation efficiency by “as much as 20%.”

With out entry to the supply code or detailed implementation data of any of those options, we are able to’t actually say how efficient these options are. We don’t understand how a lot OPPO has actually improved on prime of Android and the Linux kernel’s course of and scheduling algorithms. I’m additionally skeptical of the speak about custom-made APIs in UFS+ and the necessity for recreation builders to hook into Hyper Enhance—I don’t suppose very many apps or video games will benefit from these options simply to enhance efficiency on OPPO gadgets.

Regardless of the case could also be, I don’t suppose they detract from the general real-world expertise of ColorOS 7.1 on the OPPO Discover X2 Professional. The cellphone could be very easy in day-to-day use, hardly ever lags when gaming, and doesn’t have any points with app reminiscence administration, however to be honest, I’m speaking a couple of cellphone that has the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865, 12GB of LPDDR5 RAM, and UFS 3.0 storage. This cellphone shouldn’t have any points with efficiency anyway, and maybe these ColorOS options assist be certain that’s the case.

The Inventory Launcher…works

The inventory launcher has its execs and cons. Whereas it’s considerably customizable, it’s additionally missing some necessary options comparable to the flexibility to create folders within the app drawer or disguise apps from the app drawer fully. I like which you can change the swipe down gesture to point out notifications relatively than search…however that’s about it.

The Latest Apps Activity Supervisor is pointless however doesn’t get in the best way

You’ll be able to “lock” apps within the latest apps overview, however this doesn’t really lock them in reminiscence like on the Samsung Galaxy S20 Extremely. As a substitute, this merely prevents them from being cleared whenever you hit the “clear all” button within the latest apps overview.

Twin Wi-Fi Acceleration can increase Wi-Fi speeds…if you actually need it

Twin Wi-Fi Acceleration is a distinct segment function that could possibly be extra useful in sure areas, however I don’t suppose I’ll make a lot use of it. The function can apparently increase your Wi-Fi pace in case your present connection is gradual. It does this by connecting to a second community that’s broadcasting on both 2.4GHz or 5GHz, relying on what frequency the first community you’re at present linked to is broadcasting on. Should you regularly end up with a spotty Wi-Fi connection however have entry to a number of networks, then this may increasingly turn out to be useful. The service doesn’t appear to work with all purposes, although, because it solely listed a handful of my put in apps within the checklist of apps that assist the function. Happily, Twin Wi-Fi Acceleration could be robotically activated when the community connection is poor, so it’s an enable-and-forget function that doesn’t have any actual drawbacks in leaving it enabled.

Privateness options that don’t actually add something

“Cost Safety” in Settings > Privateness. This function, when enabled for chosen purposes (which aren’t user-definable, by the best way), reveals a banner telling you in case your machine is working in a “safe surroundings.” If not, ColorOS 7.1 will throw a warning within the standing bar that there’s an “environmental threat,” and you will notice a pop-up warning you to take motion earlier than persevering with to make use of the app. What does Cost Safety really warn you about? Whether or not your machine is rooted or if USB information switch is enabled – each of which ColorOS 7.1 warns places you in danger for “being remotely managed or having a privateness leak.” The one approach the “root detection” can be helpful is in case you purchased a tool by way of a third-party and it got here pre-rooted with malware, however the vendor didn’t trouble to disable Cost Safety. As for the USB information switch warning, I assume OPPO is apprehensive an attacker will file the display screen unbeknownst to the consumer – nonetheless, this may require the consumer to open a monetary app on their cellphone whereas linked to a compromised PC that has been granted ADB entry. There are too many variables at play right here earlier than this function can be helpful. Nonetheless, it isn’t annoying or detrimental to the consumer expertise, so I’m not in opposition to its presence.

Emergency SOS in Settings > Privateness. I’m all about defending the security of customers, so I’m glad that ColorOS 7.1 supplies a shortcut to shortly name emergency providers or user-selected emergency contacts. Nonetheless, this shortcut requires remembering that it’s a must to press the ability button 5 occasions to provoke it. I’m undecided if everybody will bear in mind this function exists or is even enabled within the warmth of the second, particularly because you’re hopefully not having to make use of it that usually. I like what Google is doing with automotive crash detection on the Pixel 4 – Google is making it so customers don’t have to consider calling emergency numbers once they’re really in an emergency. The Google Telephone app may even ship helpful data to emergency responders with out you saying a single phrase.


Conclusion – The longer term is vibrant for OPPO’s ColorOS

We have now all the time hoped let’s imagine this earlier than, however lastly, ColorOS has a vibrant future forward due to the software program crew principally transforming giant components of it. OPPO has developed its personal model identification in ColorOS—it could not be handled as a poor iOS clone. With most of ColorOS’ earlier issues out of the best way, we hope that OPPO can actually concentrate on making the enhancements we talked about in order that ColorOS will likely be seen in the identical vein as Samsung’s OneUI, OnePlus’ OxygenOS, and even Google’s Pixel UX.

In case you desire a extra visible overview/evaluation of ColorOS 7.1, right here’s a hands-on video by XDA TV’s Adam Conway shot on the OPPO Discover X2 Professional. For visuals straight from OPPO, try the corporate’s devoted ColorOS 7 web page.


Featured picture credit: OPPO

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