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Oppo recognizes the value of stock Android, offers a special version for the Find 7

Many Android smartphone manufacturers love adding their own UI over Google’s OS, but it’s not always welcomed by those who actually use the device. Oppo has realised this, and in a bid to win more fans in places where hardware like Google’s own Nexus range are freely available, it has announced Project Spectrum. It’s a fancy name for a close-to-stock Android ROM, and the new software is available for download right now, provided you own the company’s high-end Find 7 smartphone.

Oppo’s own Android UI, called ColorOS, does have a few additional features which augment what’s offered by Android, and the company has taken the sensible decision to leave those in, while removing all the garnish. What we’re left with is Android Lollipop, with the following features. The most obvious, and welcome, addition is Oppo’s own ColorOS camera app. It replaces the standard Google app, and has a manual Expert mode, HDR, various filters, and a GIF creator, plus a beautify and double exposure tool.

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The MaxxAudio feature for tweaking the sound produced by the phone is activated as standard, and there are a few handy gesture controls added to the OS, including a double-tap to wake mode. Just because the OS is slightly different, Oppo has still included support for fast charging — a common feature on its phones. Rather than go crazy with customising Android, Oppo’s scaled back and included features we can actually expect to use.

Oppo has produced a short demo video showing how Project Spectrum looks, and there’s little to distinguish it from basic Android. It’s reminiscent of how OnePlus has approached its lightly tweaked OxygenOS platform.

Android has evolved to the point where it’s attractive and pleasurable to use, and many people don’t want a drastic custom user interfaces over the top. Project Spectrum is proof more manufacturers are accepting this, and it certainly has the potential to attract more people to try out Oppo’s phones. Now we must wait to see if it comes to more Oppo devices.