A constant source of consternation among owners of OPPO devices has been the heavily customized ColorOS and especially the slow speed of Android OS updates to it. OPPO has held strong to ColorOS, owing in large part to its reported popularity in Asian markets. Today, in an effort to appease enthusiast owners, OPPO has announced an initiative to support current devices with an AOSP ROM with limited customizations.
OPPO left some clues that they would do something like this, not that it comes as a huge surprise to anyone given the long demands for it. A company rep teased big changes just a month ago in an OPPO forum thread filled with whining about software updates. Not long before that post, a Dutch rep mentioned having signed a non-disclosure agreement regarding new software developments. Finally, at the very end of September a community rep made a somewhat vague mention of an AOSP ROM being developed for the Find 7. Now we know what's going on.
There are probably some questions that come to mind about the specifics. Nicely enough, OPPO has provided several important details. First of all, their phones will still ship with ColorOS. The AOSP ROM (which is how they will refer to it) will be an optional download that can be flashed via the stock recovery without voiding the warranty, at least if you bought the device via oppostyle.com or Amazon in Europe. Otherwise, they aren't making promises about the warranty implications.
The AOSP ROM will include PureImage, MaxxAudio, and Dirac HD, which are their audiovisual enhancements for ColorOS. It will also support the screen off gestures implemented for the Find 7.
Speaking of, for now OPPO's efforts at developing the AOSP ROM are focused on the Find 7. They say "key" devices will be supported on an ongoing basis, with the R5 and R5s to come in the near future. Future releases will get it as well.
Their first iteration will be Android 5.1 and is not yet available. Why not Marshmallow? OPPO says they need Qualcomm to create drivers first. They are also making some vague statements about it being early in the process and that they will devote resources to its development in accordance with the level of user interest. In other words, don't be shocked if we end up hearing some complaints about slow AOSP upgrades.
Still, this is a good gesture from OPPO and may be a sign of some good things to come. Their fans have long touted OPPO hardware but often either disliked ColorOS or the time it took to upgrade the core OS. Getting things right with this AOSP effort could go a long way to solidifying OPPO's "base," so to speak.
- OPPO Community