Oreo is Android version 8 released in August 2017. Like all software updates, one would expect the updates to be better than the previous version, and to a ‘small’ extent, that’s true for Oreo. It adds a few new features to the system while mostly tweaking features found on Nougat 7 to make them more outstanding and more convenient.
These changes are so subtle that you can easily miss them or confuse the Oreo version with Android Nougat. So, I believe it wouldn’t make any sense to buy a new phone to enjoy these features, but it’ll be worthwhile if you can get your hands on it.
I’ve covered the various essential features of Android Oreo in this review as well as the new features like Auto-fill, picture-in-picture, and project Treble. These new features make it superior to its predecessor, Nougat.
For convenience sake, I’ve segmented the article into various parts. I’ll start with the least noticeable change.
Notification is a big part of the Android system but at the same can be very annoying. Android Oreo gives you more power to manage your notifications. While nougat offers you this same control option, it is not as flexible as Android Oreo.
In Oreo, you can set the type of notifications to receive from an app while blocking the rest. For instance, you might want to accept DMs from Twitter while at the same time preventing notifications about new followers, happenings, new tweets and so on.
You can easily access this feature by gently sliding the notification bar of the app you want to set. By pushing the notification bar gently to the right or left, you’ll see a gear icon and a clock. Click on the gear icon, and you’ll be taken to the notification section of the app where you can block the annoying ones.
The clock icon mentioned above offers another option to manage your notifications. If you ever have a notification that you’ll like to ‘work on’ later, you can snooze it and then let it reappear again after the set time with the clock icon.
Another significant tweak to the notification is the addition of notification dots to apps. I believe you’re already familiar with the ‘red number’ telling you of messages on your WhatsApp icon. Oreo add a little tweak to this. With the notification dots, you can see the messages by long-pressing the app icon without opening it.
That’s about all there is to notifications update in Oreo. While they may seem a little dull, I think they make it easier for managing notifications.
PiP let’s you play video on a small video screen floating over other apps. You can quickly move the video around the screen with your touch.
PiP is especially useful if you want to take notes while listening to lectures. On the downside, very few apps support this functionality.
3. Play Music Notification Bar
Android Oreo has also made a little change to the music notification bar. Instead of the boring white or black notification bar you get with other versions of Android, the Oreo color your notifications with the album cover of the song you’re playing. I believe this is especially useful in making your bar stand out. Other than that, it’s nothing special.
Now, here’s what I like best about the Nougat update – the Auto-fill feature. The Auto-fill feature makes it easier to fill things like passwords and addresses. Well, this may not sound new to you as you are probably already familiar with it in most common Android browsers. But Oreo takes it out of the browsers and spread it all over the system. So, now, you can auto-fill while in your browser, map, Gmail or any other app that asks for information you already have.
5. Smart Select
Google took the select feature overboard with Android Oreo. You can now do much more than copy and paste with the select options. Oreo smart select offers to translate selected foreign words. Also, the intelligent select can learn your sharing habits and easily help you save time. By selecting a phrase, it can anticipate the app you’re going to open next and bring it as an option with the select button.
6. Project Treble
Project Treble aims to make software updates easier. With the success of this project, Oreo users are guaranteed to get the next Android version P as soon as it is available without waiting for manufacturers to tweak it, which often cause delays in software updating.
Android Oreo comes with other numerous features like smart Bluetooth 5 support, disk space limits for cached data (this clears app cache once its storage quota has been exhausted), Wi-Fi aware and more expressive emojis, which makes the update worth the wait.