Oppo has announced ColorOS 11, the newest version of its own user interface installed in its smartphones, and one of the first to be built over Google’s Android 11. Anyone familiar with ColorOS may be wondering what happened to ColorOS 8, 9, and 10, as the last version to be released was ColorOS 7. The reason, according to Oppo, for skipping these is to make it less confusing to people about which version of Android the UI is built around, and clarifies the stock Android features that can be found inside.
ColorOS 7 was a major step forward for Oppo, as it edged closer to stock Android in the way it was used and appeared, and away from the highly customized versions seen previously. In conversations with people that use its phones, Oppo has listened to feedback and is keeping the basics of Android, from gesture controls and the Gboard keyboard, to the Settings page and notification drawer, intact for ColorOS 11.
What’s new? ColorOS 11 is about giving you a little more control over the software without getting rid of the Android basics. The Always-On screen now has animated patterns that can be customized, right down to the way the shapes move and the colors they use. Each Always-On panel shows the time, date, battery indicator, and notification icons too.
The phone’s wallpaper can be customized by using a photo to isolate colors, and even the ringtones are editable using a slider to create different sounds, including simple tunes, vibrant musical pieces, with a fast or slow tempo. One of my favorite new features is ideal for anyone that gets multiple messages in quick succession. ColorOS 11 will string the sounds for these notifications together to create a single melody, so they don’t become too distracting.
Dark Mode has been given an upgrade with three different visual options, each with a different greyscale level available, and the ability to set the start and end time too, which joins the existing sunset and sunrise timer. ColorOS 11 has a few new features inside, the most notable being a three-finger, quick-access gesture to Google Lens for instant text translation, plus version 2.0 of Oppo Relax, a mindfulness app that now includes specially create city soundscapes.
Elsewhere there’s FlexDrop, which adds the ability to resize floating multitasking windows, a Super Power Saving Mode that prioritizes up to six apps to still operate when the battery is getting low, plus Battery Guard that pauses battery charge at 80% overnight before completing the full charge in the early morning. Because ColorOS 11 is based on Android 11, it comes with all the new privacy features including app permission settings, Private System, and App Lock.
When will ColorOS 11 arrive? Oppo says the Find X2 Pro, Find X2, and the Find X2 Pro Lamborghini Edition will see the update in December, with theater phones coming during the first three months of 2021 and onwards. In total, 28 Oppo phones will get ColorOS 11, including the Reno 10X Zoom. The launch will be staggered, and phones not locked to a carrier will likely receive the software first.
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