With Android 13 on the horizon, OnePlus is now finally offering OnePlus 7 and OnePlus 7T series owners the opportunity to install Android 12 with the launch of the OxygenOS 12 Open Beta.
Announced in twoseparate posts on the OnePlus Forums, OxygenOS 12 Open Beta 1 can now be sideloaded on OnePlus 7/ OnePlus 7 Pro and OnePlus 7T/ OnePlus 7T Pro units. The divisive update certainly bears a striking resemblance to Oppo’s ColorOS, that is despite protestations from OnePlus that the “unified platform” will not be coming after all.
Aesthetically, you’d be hard-pressed to tell the difference between OxygenOS 12 on OnePlus 7 series devices and ColorOS or Realme UI on Oppo and Realme devices. However, a new software update is important and Android 12 offers a number of improvements to the core OS that will undoubtedly improve the daily experience you’ll have with a OnePlus 7 or OnePlus 7T series handset.
One caveat is that to install OxygenOS 12 Open Beta 1 on your OnePlus 7, OnePlus 7 Pro, OnePlus 7T, or OnePlus 7T Pro you will need to already be running OxygenOS 11.0.71 or 126.96.36.199 before proceeding. These builds contain prerequisites that are not contained within the OxygenOS 12 Open Beta ZIP files that are required for Android 12 to run correctly.
Both builds for the 7 and 7T series contain the June 2022 security patch, which means you’re up-to-date — at least for now. You can check out the full changelog below:
Newly added Smart Battery Engine, a feature that prolongs your battery life based on smart algorithms and biomimetic self-restoration technology
Redesigns app icons using new materials to give more depth and a greater sense of space and texture to the icons
Revamps the page layout based on the principle of reducing visual noise and optimizes the presentation of text and color to make key information stand out
Optimized desktop icons with improved textures, by using a design inspired by brand-new materials and uniting lights and layers
Optimized spam block rules: Adds a rule for blocking MMS messages
Newly added the HyperBoost end-to-end frame rate stabilizer
Newly added Voice effect preview to allow you to record your voice effect or check your voice effect in real time
Dark mode now supports three adjustable levels, bringing a more personalized and comfortable user experience
New additional style options for Cards, making data contents more visual and easier to read
Newly added access to OnePlus Scout in Shelf, allowing you to search multiple contents on your phone, including Apps, Settings, Media Data, etc
Work Life Balance
Work Life Balance feature is now available to all users, allowing you to effortlessly switch between Work and Life mode via quick settings
WLB 2.0 now supports automatic Work/Life mode switching, based on specific locations, Wi-Fi network, and time, also bringing customized App notification profiles according to the personalization
Gallery now allows you to switch between different layouts with a two-finger pinch gesture, intelligently recognizing the best-quality pictures, and cropping the thumbnail based on the content, making the gallery layout more pleasing
Canvas AOD brings you new diverse styles of lines and colors, for a more personalized lock screen experience with inspiring visuals
Newly added multiple brushes and strokes and support for color adjustment
Optimized software algorithm and improved face recognition to better identify the features and skin color of different figures
Optimized categorization of functions by grouping them into vision, hearing, interactive actions, and general
TalkBack supports more system apps including Photos, Phone, Mail, and Calendar
Of course, before attempting to install, ensure you have at least 30% battery remaining and 4GB of onboard storage free. This process should not wipe any personal data on your device, but we would highly recommend backing up any important files and photos before joining the beta program. Downgrading or rolling back to Android 11 will cause you to lose device data if you are not happy with OxygenOS 12 and Android 12 on your OnePlus 7 or OnePlus 7T series handset.
For a patch, Android 13 Beta 3.2 contains many more changes than expected and we’re diving into everything new as a result.
Over the coming hours, we’ll dive into all of Android 13 Beta 3.2’s new features and every single change. (The newest updates will be at the top of this list. Be sure to check back often and tell us what you find in the comments below.) Beta 3.1 screenshots appear on the left and Beta 3.2 at the right.
Prep towards new Easter Egg
Tweaked Pixel Tips layout: More prominent highlights
Tweaks to Clipboard
Sharing is now done via the bottom-left corner overlay.
The share button is no longer in the full-screen editor. After making any edits and tapping “Done,” you’re taken back to the previous screen with the corner overlay still visible.
Pixel Launcher: ‘Always show keyboard’ in app drawer
Updated Google Lens icon
Google rolls out Android 13 Beta 3.2 to Pixel with several bug fixes
Following a patch last Friday, Google is back with Android 13 Beta 3.2 today to fix more issues on Pixel phones.
Google usually does not release more than one patch in-between major previews, but Beta 3.1 was required as a more pressing fix — coming only two days after Beta 3 — given the unavailability of the Beta Feedback app for new users.
At a high-level, Beta 3.2 includes the “latest bug fixes and improvements to stability and performance.” Five Android 13 issues are specifically addressed with this update:
Fixed an issue where the back gesture wasn’t working in some apps.
Fixed an issue where the At a glance settings page would collapse inconsistently when scrolling.
Fixed an issue where some apps would crash instantly on opening.
Fixed an issue where the microphone would turn on and off unexpectedly during unrelated use of the device.
Fixed an issue where the Google Photos app would crash frequently.
These problems are particularly application and user-facing, though we have not seen widespread reports of them.
Factory images for Android 13 Beta 3.2 build TPB3.220610.004 (versus TPB3.220513.017.B1 previously) are available now. On a Pixel 4a, the OTA comes in at 238MB.
After the main release and two patches, Google is now asking for feedback on Android 13 Beta 3 in a survey that’s slightly different from past versions by focusing on the search experience.
For starters, the survey is hosted on Qualtrics instead of Google Forms and asks for demographic information (age and occupation). It opened today and ends on June 28 at 5 p.m. PT.
This survey should take no longer than 10 minutes to complete. Please keep in mind that all questions and content within this survey are confidential and should not be shared with anyone.
This Android 13 Beta 3 survey is not limited to Pixel with various OEMs, including those that have not announced preview programs yet, listed:
Realme, Momo, Oppo, Samsung, Microsoft, Google Pixel, OnePlus, Motorola, Sony, and Nokia
After specifying the current build on your device, Google asks which “search box did you primarily use since using your device on Android 13”: Search widget on the home screen or All Apps Drawer search box. You’re able to select “Both.” Google wants to know whether Android 13 has changed your usage compared to Android 12. Listed capabilities include:
Apps not yet installed (i.e. Google Play store apps)
Apps (installed on your phone)
Content within Apps
Quick app actions (i.e. shortcuts)
Web content (e.g. websites, Google search results page)
There’s then a question about “how easy or difficult was it to find what you were searching for in the search box” with the ability to expand further via written responses; Google then asks you to compare the two search fields.
Likely to help improve the process of registering your fingerprint on devices with in-display readers, Android 13 Beta 3 has gained a new enrolment UI.
Of course, with the Pixel 6a and Pixel 7 series yet to be officially available, that means the new UI is currently limited to the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro. If you update a device which already has pre-registered biometric data, you may never actually see this new UI. However, when enrolling a fingerprint or thumbprint, during the latter stages of this process in Android 13 Beta 3, you will see a new animation and guides to help you get a better reading of your finger.
Given the bad press that the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro in-display fingerprint scanners have received, it’s likely that this new guidance and improved UI have been added to ensure better registration processes for all users. We do know that the upcoming Pixel 6a will utilize a different in-display scanner, but it remains to be seen if this new change will help alleviate the Pixel 6 series issues.
By adding a new fingerprint enrolment UI within Android 13, it makes it more obvious just when to begin adjusting your finger and add the extremities or edges. In Android 12, a text prompt alongside guide brackets are currently used, which are actually not entirely visible when pressing your finger on-screen.
Making this change to the fingerprint enrollment section within Android 13 could have major benefits for the upcoming Pixel 7 series, but could also help those with problems with their existing Pixel 6 series handset and ensure better unlock times when using the new unlock method.
After waiting what felt like ages, Android 12 has arrived with a literal mountain of changes, tweaks, and tuning to sink your teeth into. We’ve whittled or distilled our deep dive down to a selection of 20 of the best features added in Android 12 — features we think you’ll really love right away.
We’re going beyond Material You here though. The wallpaper-based theming approach sure is different to what we’ve seen on Pixel hardware in years prior, but there are some things to love and even a few things to hate — a lack of independent customization being one sore point for just about everyone.
Even so, selecting 20 of the top features in Android 12 is no easy task. With over 100 new user-facing additions, functions, and tweaks, there is so much here to try out for yourself. We have done the hard work, so you don’t have to.
The fact that it has taken until Android 12 to even get a dedicated one-handed mode in AOSP is quite shocking. Then when you consider the way it has been implemented owes a lot to iOS and the “Reachability” mode, and you’ll scratch your head wondering why we have waited to get the option.
However long the wait, it’s just nice to have the option to use larger smartphones without requiring hand gymnastics or huge hands. Unfortunately, you cannot access the one-handed mode unless you are happy to use gesture navigation.
Yet another feature that has been so long in the making that we were beginning to wonder if it would ever arrive. You might not even remember Quick tap as it was originally codenamed “Columbus.” Basically, this new gesture lets you double-tap the back of your Pixel to do things like activating the flashlight, activating the Google Assistant, taking screenshots, or launching an app.
It took Google so long to implement that iOS has had the option for over a year at this point. You need to enable the feature, and it’s a great way to access common parts of Android without needing to unlock your device.
Microphone/camera access dots
People are rightly taking privacy on their smartphones and connected devices more seriously. The number of permissions that many apps request upon first launch and accepted without much thought can be remedied. If an app is concurrently or has very recently accessed any of your on-device cameras or the microphones, you’ll see a small green dot or icon at the upper-right of your smartphone display.
This is just a quick indicator that an app or service has accessed either hardware. Expanding the notification shade and tapping the icon informs you just which app has done so. An extended feature as part of the wider Privacy controls lest you quickly disable or enable Microphone and Camera access from the Quick Toggles section on a whim.
If you’re a big mobile gamer then the dedicated Game dashboard will be a very important new addition. Built directly into Do Not Disturb mode, Game dashboard brings a floating pop-up menu with a few extra tweaks and controls to enhance your mobile gaming.
This allows you to screen record, get frame rate indicators and ensures that any incoming calls and texts are silencing when you’re deep into your favorite mobile games.
Picture-in-picture mode tweaks/tuning
Android 12 brings some enhancements to the picture-in-picture mode, which makes a big difference to the experience. To better fit with the rest of the “rounded” aesthetic, the playback windows do away with sharp corners with what could be considered a more “pill-shaped” player.
There is a new ability to “stash” a playing video so that UI portions are not obstructed. This means that background playback doesn’t affect anything you’re currently doing. When you dismiss or close a playing window, the animation envelops the player and it snaps or “pops” out of view.
The process of opening an app from a URL should be much easier with “Verified link” in Android 12. Effectively, these are URLs that specifically state that it should open an app and are able to bypass the old “open with” dialog that would show on previous versions of Android.
You likely won’t even notice the feature in action as it just acts automatically and streamlines your day-to-day UI experience. Heading into the Settings app, you can change the behavior of verified links on an app-by-app basis.
Link/image sharing from Recents menu
To save some time, you can quickly grab web page links and images on web pages or in apps courtesy of a quick-select option within the Recent apps screen. When viewing the Recents section, web pages will include a “link” icon or an “image” icon.
Tapping the “link” icon brings up a color-coordinated site link that can be copied or shared directly. Alternatively, you can drag the link icon to a recent contact or into a “more” option, which will launch the wider Share Sheet.
When tapping the “image” icon a similar menu will launch but this will include “Lens” and “Save” options. Similarly, dragging downwards opens up three recent contacts or apps with the ability to drag into a “more” option which also launches a wider Share Sheet.
Yet another long-overdue addition but an important one nonetheless. Scrolling screenshots are finally here in Android 12 and represents one of the top or most requested features over the past few years. The implementation is not dissimilar to how it has been added in various third-party Android skins from the likes of OnePlus and Xiaomi.
Just take a screenshot and if the app or screen can be expanded, you will get a “Capture more” toggle appearing in the bottom-left preview pop-up. At the moment, this doesn’t work everywhere. A case in point is that of Chrome, which isn’t yet working with the Scrolling screenshot feature.
Ongoing call chip
Although this feature is not completely reliant on Android 12, when using Google Phone as your default dialer a status bar “chip” will give you at-a-glance information on call progress/timings. This does appear to adapt or change based upon Dynamic Color theming on devices where color-tuning and accenting is currently supported.
This works as a semi-replacement for the pop-up “bubbles” that offers call controls and gives quick access to return to a call in-progress. Unlike bubbles, a status bar call chip fully minimizes phone calls without affecting any other apps you have open or are using at a particular point in time. Tapping reopens your call and minimizing or opening another app will return the call to the status bar chip.
Universal device search
Provided you use the Pixel Launcher as your default home screen, when accessing the app drawer there is an expanded Universal device search option within Android 12. This expanded search lets you find contacts, messages, email, and apps so long as you use the default launcher on Pixel phones.
It’s worth noting that you can access the feature automatically by enabling the keyboard each time you swipe up into the Pixel Launcher app drawer. Alternately, you can just access via the search bar at the top of the app drawer as and when you see fit.
Face control auto-rotate
To help ensure that your phone is in the right orientation all the time auto-rotate has been given a big boost with the ability to activate face controlled rotation. The feature uses the selfie camera to orientate in conjunction with the accelerometer for even more accurate auto-rotate than using the accelerometer alone.
If you often watch YouTube or other video content in landscape mode then this is a great added feature. You can still use the standard auto-rotate mode or the quick toggles to snap to landscape orientation if you prefer that method.
While the Gboard redesign is not technically part of the Android 12 update, the changes are only available on devices with the most recent OS. Top of the new features in this Android 12-specific Gboard overall is full compatibility with Material You theming and Dynamic Color tweaks.
If you like rounded or soft corners, the new Gboard will really appeal. All of the tweaks are most prominent when using your on-device light theme.
If you are using your phone in a dark or low-light environment and want to quickly adjust the screen brightness, “Extra dim” allows you to do so with just a single tap. You can customize the luminance level or brightness of your display to a preset level of your choosing with a single button press.
Security and personal safety features have been elevated in priority within Android 12. While this might not seem like a big deal, the Emergency SOS feature is one of the top new additions for personal safety and peace of mind.
You can press the power button quickly five times or more to have your device emit a loud sound and countdown alarm before calling emergency services or a predetermined number of your choice. This will call for help, but your device will need to be unlocked if you choose a number that is not directly to emergency services.
Approximate or precise location controls
Privacy is one of the core tenets of the Android 12 update, and this means a number of new features are coming to your smartphone including the ability to give apps and services access to “approximate” or “precise” location data.
This includes a new pop-up with a new animation to indicate the inherent differences when apps request your location. For apps that only require a locale or region data, this is a great way to conceal or protect your location without losing access to in-app features or functions.
New pop-up Power menu
Every year the Power menu on Android seems to receive a facelift and the latest looks the best so far despite a few substantial changes. Cards & Passes and smart home controls are now accessible in separate lockscreen toggles leaving the Power menu to be just that – a place to access device power controls.
This simplification and separation mean that it is abundantly clear just what the pop-up offers. While the previous version in Android 11 felt like a “hub” for some incompatible UI and system controls. Now there is no confusion and it’s all the better for it.
Editor available from Share Sheet
When sharing an image, be that a direct screenshot or even just an image from your gallery, an editor has been added to allow you to do things like add emoji, text, and draw without needing to first edit your image or screenshot.
For those wondering why this is one of the top features in Android 12, it means you can just add or tweak things right before you send them on. Not only does this save time, it makes things a lot easier across the board.
Adaptive charging tweaks
While you likely won’t see the benefits initially, Adaptive Charging has now been tuned to ensure that your smartphone battery lifespan is considered when the feature is activated in Android 12.
Adaptive charging slows the charging speed between the 80 and 100% thresholds and, in turn, helps reduce the wear and tear on your Pixel internal battery. This charging process should more closely match when your on-device alarm when your phone is placed on charge overnight.
Face controls in Android Accessibility Suite
Expanding on the growing suite of accessibility features Android 12, a new “Camera Switch” allows you to control your phone with facial expressions via the selfie camera. The facial expressions that can be performed include opening your mouth, smiling, raising your eyebrows, and looking left, right, or up.
The feature will, by default, ask for the user to set expressions for next, select, and “pause,” which stops the phone from recognizing other gestures temporarily. Other actions include previous, touch & hold, scroll forward/backward, home, back, notifications, quick settings, and overview/multitasking.
On/off labels in Quick Settings
Simple. Effective. The new pill-shaped Quick Settings toggles now have an “on” or “off” indicator underneath to make it even more obvious if something is activated or not. You might not understand why this is a nice addition, but for accessibility and those with vision-related issues it makes it explicit rather than a highlighted button accent.
With Android 12 hitting AOSP at the start of the month, Google also released the latest Compatibility Definition Document (CDD). There are a handful of hardware and software changes that device makers have to abide by, but nothing too major.
With Android 12, Google introduced a “Performance class” standard that “defines a set of device capabilities that goes beyond Android’s baseline requirements.” This includes media, camera, and “generic” (memory, screen resolution/density).
It lets app developers determine which software features a phone or tablet is capable of running. For example, Performance class 12 (for the “highest performing devices”) could get the “most premium experience,” while class 11 would go down to “high quality experience” and everything else gets the base experience. Meanwhile, Performance classes are forward-compatible:
A device can upgrade to a newer platform version without updating its performance class. For example, a device that initially supports performance class 12 can upgrade to Android 13 and continue to report it supports class 12 if it does not meet the class 13 requirements.
The Android 12 CDD says that Performance class 11 (R) and 12 (S) “must” at least have a 12MP rear camera that supports 4K at 30FPS video capture. The latter also requires a 5MP or higher front-facer (1080p at 30FPS), while the former needs at least 4MP. Both classes require a screen resolution of 1080p (with 400DPI) or greater and a minimum RAM requirement of 6GB. Sequential and random read/write are also specified:
Meanwhile, OEMs must display the microphone and camera indicators when those two components are being used by apps, including system ones. Under “Unicode and Font,” Google added that device makers:
MUST NOT remove or modify NotoColorEmoji.tff in the system image. (It is acceptable to add a new emoji font to override emoji in NotoColorEmoji.tff)
A “strong” recommendation has been added about making sure the touchable area of an under-display fingerprint sensor (UDFPS) does not interfere with 3-button navigation, which Google reminds that “some users might require for accessibility.”
Breaking from the recent yearly release cadence, the next version of Android to release might be a mid-cycle bump — an “Android 12.1,” if you will — rather than Android 13.
By all measures, Android 12 is a significant release for Google’s phones, among other things, revamping the design with “Material You,” which matches the system and your apps to your wallpaper’s colors. In the coming months, we should see more of how Android 12 will improve other companies’ phones, with Samsung set to beta test One UI 4.0 in the next few weeks.
Normally, this would be about the time that we should set our sights on 2022’s Android release, presumed to be Android 13. In fact, Android 13’s internal dessert name, Tiramisu, has been discovered.
However, it seems there may be another stop in the journey. As tipped to XDA by luca020400 (Director of the Lineage OS ROM), a new Android code change suggests that Tiramisu/Android 13 will be API level 33, which is two levels higher than the forthcoming Android 12, which will be API 31. 9to5Google has also discovered a newer code change that directly confirms that Android 13 will be API 33.
More than that, it’s directly stated that API level 32 will be “sc-v2.” In this instance, “sc” is shorthand for Android 12’s internal dessert name, “Snow Cone,” while “v2” implies that Snow Cone will get a “version 2.”
In almost every case over the last 13 years of Android’s history, a change to the API level has coincided with a change to Android’s version number. However, this would be the first time since 2017 that Google has felt the need to put out a second, mid-cycle upgrade for a particular Android version.
At that time, Android Oreo got a bump from 8.0 to 8.1 at the end of the year, with the update debuting on Pixel and Nexus phones. A similar mid-cycle “x.1” release schedule also occurred following Android Nougat and Lollipop. Following that pattern, it’s quite possible that this “sc-v2” update might be called “Android 12.1” when it launches.
So what can we expect from such an Android 12.1 upgrade? Whatever is changing must be both important enough to justify a mid-cycle release, and also drastic enough that Google couldn’t add it all to Android 12 while keeping the API stable for developers.
For now, there aren’t many clues to go on, especially as more parts of Android have become updatable without needing a major upgrade, thanks to Mainline modules. In a comment on another code change, we see that “sc-v2” will introduce some tweaks to the WindowManager APIs, which would definitely affect app developers.
It’s too early to say when this supposed Android 12.1 would release, but the earliest available evidence suggests Google has been preparing it since at least May. In past examples of a mid-cycle release, the new Android version bump would see release within a few months of the major version’s launch.
Another tidbit you’ll probably have noticed in the quote above is that a Googler mentions that “some of our Nest devices might not be migrated to T.” For now, we’re not too sure what to make of this, as no known Nest devices run on Android — let alone have potential to upgrade to Android 13 (T) — with the Nest Hub series using either Cast OS or Fuchsia. It’s possible this may simply be referring to the Chromecast with Google TV, which could be seen as falling under the Nest umbrella.
Gmail on the web is set to get a navigation revamp this summer, while the Android app is now beginning to roll out a Material You redesign.
It starts on the homescreen, with the top of the page seeing a pill-shaped search field that features a hamburger icon on the left and profile avatar/account switcher at the other end that fits the curvature. The layout of the navigation drawer is unchanged with this revamp, while various buttons in Gmail are now rounded.
At the bottom, we get a taller bottom bar — like we enabled in Google Play — that makes use of a pill-shaped indicator to highlight what tab you’re currently viewing. The selected icon is also filled out, while Gmail leverages a rectangular Compose FAB just above it — similar to the one in Google Contacts.
The other big change today is the use of Dynamic Color to hue the background of Gmail for Android. This includes the main email list, all tabs, and the compose screen. The bottom bar, search field, and buttons leverage a darker shade, while the overflow menu also sees some theming.
Gmail’s Material You redesign is coming with version 2021.08.24.394054613, as spotted by Artem Russakovskii and XDA this morning. That new release is rolling out via the Play Store, but it’s not yet available for all users.
Meanwhile, sideloading does not guarantee you’ll see these changes as there is a server-side component, but you might get lucky. This new update does seem to widely rename “Rooms” to “Spaces” — as expected — in the bottom bar.