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OnePlus phones won't support Project Treble, but that's not a big deal

Following the launch of its latest phone – the OnePlus 5TOnePlus held an AMA (opens in new tab) on its official forums to answer any questions that its fans/customers had about the new tech. A lot of questions were answered, and one of the more interesting tidbits to come out of this was the fact that none of OnePlus's phones will support Project Treble.

Quick refresher – what in the world is Project Treble?

This is a system that Google announced in May to help speed up the infamously slow update process for new versions of Android when they're released, and although phones that ship with Android 8.0 Oreo or later have Treble turned on by default, ones that later upgrade to Oreo from previous versions of Android aren't required to do so.

As a result of this, the OnePlus 3, 3T, 5, and even the 5T won't support Treble. This could theoretically mean slower updates compared to other manufacturers, but we wouldn't get too worried just yet.

The lack of Treble on the 5T is far from a dealbreaker.

First of all, we still haven't seen any real benefit from Treble. This will hopefully change beginning next year as phones actually start shipping with Oreo out of the box, but there's still no guarantee that we'll see a noticeable difference in update turnaround times.

Secondly, OnePlus is already damn good at updating its hardware to new versions of Android in a timely manner. An open beta of Oreo will be released to the 5 and 5T in late December, and last year's 3 and 3T recently received an update to a stable build of it.

Is it peculiar and potentially irritating that OnePlus won't be supporting Treble on its phones? Yes. Is it reason enough to not buy the 5T? Not at all.

OnePlus 5T review: Come for the value, not the excitement

Joe Maring was a Senior Editor for Android Central between 2017 and 2021. You can reach him on Twitter at @JoeMaring1.

  • With OnePlus the question is how long will they continue to provide updates for a particular phone, not how quickly will they arrive. For that, only time will tell - after the OnePlus 2 I'll judge by delivery only, not promises.
  • Isn't that the same question with any manufacturer aside from Google? For example, HTC made big promises with the One A9, and immediately broke them. I'm personally okay with a phone getting one major OS update, so long as the manufacturer puts out regular security updates and bug fixes. I buy a device for the software its running today, not the software it may run at some point in the distant future. However, I know this is a minority opinion. I wouldn't mind if Google switched to doing major OS updates every two years, which would give manufacturers much more development and testing time with the current version, and potentially make it easier for them to keep older devices up to date. I'm hopeful that Project Treble accomplishes something close to this model.
  • How is OnePlus with security updates?
  • Exactly what I was going to ask. Pretty much the only thing holding me back from the 5T. That and the piss poor speaker!
  • With the oneplus 3 & 3t very good, I have the Nov patch on mine already. Other models I don't know.
  • The question is not just about oxygenos. getting treble working would help third party rom developers. Maybe it wouldn't be a deal breaker for the 5t, but as a whole it's a good sign that OnePlus isn't the powerusers phone it once was. When they can waste time redesigning the system ui but can't give us treble.
  • Next year when they can launch with Oreo they will make Treble a bullet point on their advertising. They were just too lazy to work on Oreo sooner.
  • Oreo has been out since August. That is like half a year after release on a new phone. How is that great?
  • Half a year? August was 3 months ago.
  • Secondly, OnePlus is already damn good at updating its hardware to new versions of Android in a timely manner. Lol, tell that to OP2 owners.
  • OP2 doesn't exist. lol
  • Well, I'm definitely eager to see the benefits of Treble on new Xperias. Sony already has stellar update time, and I do hope it gets even better. And about OnePlus, yes, 'that's not a big deal', as no one could reasonably expect them to implement it. Sheer fact that they are putting 5T with Nougat is a joke. When something offers more for less, it is for a reason.
  • Why is it a joke?, maybe they released with Nougat so that they wouldn't be forced to implement Treble which requires a phones firmware to be rewritten.
    This way they can release now, update to Oreo a month later and not be forced into treble which requires more work which can be hard on a small OEM. They will still be on Oreo before most of the major manufacturers anyway.
    To be honest any OEM could do this for years to come and never be forced into Treble.