News & Analysis

OnePlus Oxygen OS: Hands-on

Oxygen OS is finally here and we flashed it on a OnePlus One. We are pleased to see that OnePlus has gone with almost stock like approach for its ROM.

Starting off from the boot animation, it has been obviously customised to showcase the new ROM. The boot animation now shows concentric circles merging to portray the Oxygen OS logo.

As soon as the device comes to the lock screen, you will see a familiar shortcut layout, comprising of dialer, unlock and camera. All shortcuts work with a simple swipe gesture but with a slight tweak to the animation.

Notifications are now visible and can be dealt from the lockscreen itself.

Unlocking the phone, we noticed that the device runs Google Now launcher, which stays true to OnePlus’s earlier comments.

Going into the ‘settings’ and ‘about phone’ menus, you can see the device runs on Android 5.0.2.

The ROM retains the four gestures which were introduced by Cyanogen:

  1. Double tap to wake
  2. Open camera by drawing O
  3. Toggle flashlight by drawing V
  4. Music control by drawing < or >

The toggle to shift between on-screen and capacitive keys is still there with pretty much the same options. It is good that OnePlus has retained this functionality.

With Android Lollipop, Battery saver mode comes baked into the battery settings and works as intended.

Users are now also available in the settings menu, which is another Android lollipop feature and can be used if you want to make multiple profiles.

In the Display settings we also find the toggle for Ambient display which will wake the display if a notification arrives or if you pick the phone up.

The two-step drop down notification panel is pretty basic but OnePlus has added one small tweak to it. You can change and customise the positioning of quick settings icons.

The multitasking menu is also tweaked and has a close all button.

The app drawer has remained pretty much the same with the same white background and tap to enlarge animation.

The messaging app from old CM11s has been discontinued and Oxygen OS uses Google Hangouts as its default messaging app.

Since Oxygen OS is using Google Now launcher, a swipe from the left on the home screen will take you to Google Now.

Because of this stock like approach the OnePlus One loses the custom boot animation support, support for themes and various app drawer settings.

We did a couple of synthetic benchmarks to get an estimate of how the new ROM has affected the performance. Here is the new Antutu score which has dropped from a previous score of 47037.

Here are the scores for 3D Mark Ice Storm Unlimited. The scores have improved with the new update, as earlier the phone scored 18416.

The camera app has been changed to stock which means no live modes like sepia, black and white, beautify, etc. Another step back is the inability to shoot RAW images.

Video capabilities have also been toned down, limiting OnePlus One to shoot at 1080p at max, instead of the 4K mode.

Here is a test image after the new update in ample lighting conditions

Photo shot under fluorescent light

Close-up photo shot under direct sunlight.

Photo shot under low light

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Shubham Mishra

Founder and Chief Editor at PaidFreeDroid. Shubham likes to keep on top of the tech world and loves to help people around him who face day to day trouble with technology.

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