Bloatware on Android phones has been around for so long — especially on Samsung and Huawei phones — that it's hardly even news anymore. Even so, it was a huge surprise when we found out that OnePlus has involved itself in this dubious practice. The OxygenOS bloatware in question comes from probably the shadiest company of them all — Facebook. Starting with the OnePlus 8 series and continuing with the Nord, users have had to put up with a bunch of Facebook-owned apps and a few background services on their brand-new handsets, some of which cannot be uninstalled.
Android has always taken flak from Apple for its OS update policies, but just because every Android device may not get system updates quickly doesn't mean they have to miss out on features. Google allows manufacturers to update system level apps through the Play Store without having to push entire system upgrades. Xiaomi is up to just that right now, publishing its core Security app to the Play Store. Read More
With the introduction of Doze in Marshmallow, app developers and users had to find the perfect balance between battery life and background activity. Granular options for battery optimization exist on most Android devices, allowing you to single out apps you'd like to give free rein to. This can be crucial for backup apps (Google Photos), companion apps for wearables (Fitbit, Wear), and smart home security apps that require your location to arm or disarm (Nest, SmartThings).
However, some phones like the ones from OnePlus limit your access to battery optimization settings for system apps, specifically, meaning you can't give Google Photos the freedom to run whenever it needs to, which usually results in stalled backups. Read More
Among all the other changes we've spotted in Android Q, Google is also tweaking the old app info screen for managing specific application details. In addition to a snazzy new look and Material Theme iconography, Android Q merges together general app uninstallation and system app disabling into one label, plus new notification average info. There's even a long-overdue button to open the app in question (yay). Read More
Many companies have tight restrictions on the apps that are installed on company phones, and now Google can help with that. For those preinstalled apps that can't be managed via the Play Store, Google is now allowing G Suite administrators to control the system apps that are enabled or disabled. Read More