Sometimes, the best things are hidden from plain view. But in the background, they work their magic while making your life easier. But just sometimes, they may give you a panic attack.
This is what happened after I upgraded to Oreo on the OnePlus 5T. After the update, the phone booted up blazing fast; then even before I could understand what was happening, the phone was unlocked. Was this a failed update? What happened to face recognition? Hope my data’s safe?
Such perplexing questions gave me a sleepless night and I worked to get to the bottom of this. First, I checked the version of Android the phone was running; it was indeed Android Oreo. My data was safe, but still the phone unlocked immediately. Had face recognition gone kaput?
On the iPhone X, face recognition works while you look at the screen. Thus, I moved away from the screen, and sure enough the phone stayed locked. But, as soon as I was in range, the phone got unlocked. I decided to delete my face scan and start afresh. Scanning my face again, I set it as the default unlock mode; and again it unlocked in the jiffy!
Okay, that was the secret Oreo “shake” at work I guessed. But, the moment I received a new email, the inbox seemed different. The new mail was in a bold font. Cool. But, I was getting late for work and had to book an Uber; after booking my cab, I was back to checking my office mail. But, what did I find? A tiny window for the Uber app, which I could tap to maximise; this was a life-saver.
On my day to work, I wanted to catch up on my reading; soon I was on the Kindle app and the words were super crisp; when I logged on to some news websites to get the latest updates, I had no problem reading; in fact this was possibly the best experience I had while reading news on websites.
Also, my Netflix and Amazon Prime shows were a pleasure to watch, as were the photos I clicked with the phone; colour reproduction seemed to have that extra zing, provided brightness was set to auto. If brightness was turned down, especially outdoors, the videos appeared a tad dull.
I decided to delve deeper and found that I could choose which apps I would like to run in the background; also, I could jump to apps I hadn’t installed directly from emails or websites. And my saved passwords got auto-filled on my frequently used apps. I could also limit updating my location in the background; this one’s important as this feature hogs battery.
There were two other features I liked, after using the phone for a month since I installed the Oreo update: The enhanced notifications (which gave more control as well) and tooltips; and the ability to prevent unknown apps from installing themselves (if you do as lot of tinkering, chances are you’ve switched on the ability to install unknown APKs; after this update, you can set permissions based on the source of the APK).
After a month of using Android Oreo on the OnePlus 5T, I can safely see the update growing on me; notwithstanding the scare it gave me when I first upgraded. If you have this phone, upgrade fast for a better experience.