We've been combing through the finer details of the first Android 12 beta this week, but it's not the only operating system you can test out right now. If you're using a OnePlus 8, 8 Pro, or 8T, the OxygenOS 11 open beta program helps keep your phone feeling fresh between stable software releases. New software is now available for all three phones, complete with plenty of bug fixes and an unexpected change to the always-on display.
We've all had a phone reach a premature death, running out of software updates well before the device is actually too slow to be used. Thankfully, the custom ROM community helps keep your old gadgets alive, and there's no better ROM out right now than LineageOS. The open-source project brought Android 11 to nearly 60 phones earlier this month, and two more are about to be added to the list. The OnePlus 6 and 6T have picked up Android 11 courtesy of LineageOS, with nightly builds for both now available.
LG swears that at least some of its current phones will be getting updates, some up to the upcoming Android 12, as it bids the smartphone market goodbye. We can't speak to the likelihood of that outcome (well, we could, but we're being nice), but at least one more current model is getting updated to Android 11. The Verizon version of the LG Velvet is starting to get its Android 11 OTA this weekend.
The Nokia 3.2 was blessed with an Android 11 update in March, and earlier this month, the previous flagship 8.1 and the budget 2.3 could join the party. Now the Nokia 2.2 is also in for the Android 11 update, as reported by TechMesto. The new firmware is rolling out to 24 countries, predominantly in Europe and Asia, while people living in other areas will still have to wait a while.
The Zenfone 7 is a unique device, bucking the trend of hole punch cameras with a flip-up rear camera module. A lack of timely updates remains a sore spot for Asus hardware (something that is decidedly not unique), but the company's flagship is now getting Android 11 after a long beta process. The update should be ready for all ZenFone 7 and ZenFone 7 Pro models now, no matter what territory they're being used in.
Out with the old, in with the new: LineageOS cut support for Android 9 Pie earlier this year, and to make up for the loss, the open-source project has just released version 18.1 based on Android 11. It comes with official support for about 60 phones and tablets.
The lone big promoter of Google’s Android One program, Nokia, made big promises about timely device updates, but it’s been falling behind on those commitments for its flagship. However, that doesn’t mean it’s leaving its entry-level and budget phones in the lurch. The two-year-old Nokia 3.2 is receiving its Android 11 update as planned.
The evergreen TeamWin Recovery Project received a sizable update to 3.5 back in December. Late last night they posted 3.5.1, which they're calling a "mini release," waiting for full support for Android 11. Most of the changes are housekeeping and small support additions, now split into two branches for Android 9 and 10.
OnePlus published Android 11 for the Nord at the beginning of March, but the rollout came to a grinding halt last week due to some bugs the company discovered in the process. It looks like whatever went wrong was easy to fix, as OnePlus is already rolling out a hotfix update (OxygenOS 22.214.171.124) to everyone that comes with the same changelog as the original version.
When Android 11 arrived last year, it included a lot of new features to try. Samsung has manage to do fairly well at updating its devices this time around, with the S20 and Note20 series receiving Android 11 by the end of 2020, and many other phones getting it ahead of schedule. While Samsung added plenty of its own features, Google's enhancements still shine through, and here are the ones you really owe it to yourself to be using.