Yesterday, OnePlus officially unveiled its new flagship, the 3T. The device comes to market about six months after the company’s previous flagship, and best-selling product, the OnePlus 3, was originally launched.
Alongside the 3T, OnePlus also announced the launch of a new version of its operating system, OxygenOS 3.5, and reiterated its commitment to bring Android Nougat to its devices. Given so many moving pieces in the company’s strategy, we don’t blame you if you’re a bit a confused as to how this will play out for your device. But fear not, as we’ve sifted through all the company’s videos, announcements, and public discussions to understand how each of these pieces fits into a precise picture.
OnePlus 3T vs OnePlus 3
Some OnePlus 3 (OP3) users were feeling a bit cheated when the company announced an upgraded phone so soon after the previous flagship. However, OnePlus says it views the OP3 and the 3T as different sides of the same coin, or rather, different versions of the same phone. And given the main difference between the two devices is the newer Snapdragon 821 processor, the 3T is clearly not meant as an upgrade for existing OP3 users.
More importantly, the company said quite a few times that both devices will be getting the same software updates at the exact same time. In fact, OnePlus’s beta program, which lets users test pre-release software, has been working for months based on this principle. The newest software updates launching on the OnePlus 3T were tested by OP3 users, so the newer operating system was designed from the start to work on both devices.
Going forward, the company says the two phones will always stay in sync in terms of software updates, so that’s good news for everyone.
The new version of OxygenOS (OOS) comes with an updated design, improved first-party apps and a slew of other changes. And it’s been in public beta for quite a while, getting ready for primetime.
According to yesterday’s announcements, the OnePlus 3T will launch with OOS 3.5 so that means the new system software will finally hit more devices on November 22, when the new phones launch.
However, given the statements above about keeping the company’s phones in sync, this should also mean that OnePlus 3 owners will get the over-the-air update at the same time. At worst, OP3 owners might get the update a few days later on November 28th when the 3T launches in the EU. But, if the company stays true to its word, OP3 users should see the update in the next couple of weeks.
Android 7.0 Nougat
While a new version of OOS is all fine and good, what users are really clamoring for is the launch of Android 7.0 Nougat on their devices. OnePlus has been coy about when the new Google OS would launch on its phones, but important hints have been given along the way.
Back in September, OnePlus said it was already working on a build of Android 7.0 Nougat for the OnePlus 3. Then, a few days ago, one of the company’s executives reconfirmed that, and added that OP3 users would be getting a beta version of the new OS by the end of the month. Finally, in yesterday’s announcements, OnePlus said that both the OP3 and the 3T would be seeing Android Nougat by the end of the year.
In other words, if everything goes according to plan, once Oxygen OS 3.5 goes public in the next couple of weeks, a new beta build based on Android 7.0 Nougat will be made available to OP3 and 3T owners. Then, as bugs get fixed and feedback is incorporated into the system, the final over-the-air update should be out sometime in December.
Though the company’s communications have at time been quite confusing, a clear picture and timeline has emerged from their latest announcements, promising quite a lot for OnePlus 3 and 3T owners over the next month and half.
Now all that’s left to do is to hope the company manages to deliver on all of its promises.
Do the company’s plans sound good to you or would you have preferred a different timetable? Let us know in the comments below.