OxygenOS Beta Program: Explained.

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  1. Brian Yoon
    Head of User Experience Design Oct 13, 2016

    Brian Yoon , Oct 13, 2016 :

    Hey everyone,

    When you buy a new OnePlus smartphone, you might notice this important little message printed on the side of the box: “Created Together With Our Fans.” It’s not marketing nonsense; it’s a phrase that we live by. It’s a philosophy that pervades everything we do, and software is a big part of what we do. Back when we first started our software journey almost two years ago, you guys actually gave OxygenOS its name. It's been a group effort since the very beginning.

    You’ve probably noticed new "Community Builds" for OxygenOS popping up on the forums over the past few months. What are Community Builds? Why do they exist? What’s going on with OxygenOS? Solid questions, my curious friends. Here’s the short answer: Community Builds represent one component of our new, expanded software beta program. It all goes back to that “Created Together” thing. We want to make sure that every feature, tweak, and addition to OxygenOS passes the ultimate test: the scrutiny of, well, you.

    To help accomplish this goal, OxygenOS now exists simultaneously in three different “streams”: Closed Beta, Open Beta, and Official Release. At every step of the way, we collect general feedback, bug reports, and feature requests directly from you, our community. Here’s how it works:
    Closed Beta
    (~4 updates per month)

    This is where all OxygenOS code begins. Sometimes, these builds are referred to as “alpha builds.” Here, our software team tests new (and sometimes experimental) code and features. The big goal here is to get initial feedback on new ideas. These builds lack the stability of polished software, but offer early access. New code and features often come to Closed Beta builds weeks or months before going public. In order to receive Closed Beta builds, you have to apply to be a certified Closed Beta tester. This is quite an elite crew, though, as we usually only accept about 60 closed beta testers at any given time.

    Open Beta (Community Builds)
    (~2 updates per month)

    Anyone can try these builds (including you). Once a new feature or change passes initial quality tests in Closed Beta, they’ll be added to Open Beta. The software here is much more stable and less likely to include major bugs, but still not quite ready for final release. To make a long story short, Open Beta is the second, semi-public step for feedback and bug testing, ensuring that only the best code makes it to official release.

    Official Release (OTA)
    (~1 update every 1-2 months)

    This is the final step. Once code has undergone several rounds of internal and community feedback throughout the Closed and Open Beta programs, the best of the best is released on the official version of OxygenOS. These are the updates that you automatically receive via OTA if you don’t opt in to any sort of beta program. In the nutshell, these are the builds that go out to all of our users across the globe. While these builds are stable and polished, the feedback doesn’t stop. We still continue to collect and analyze feature requests and bug reports, and we actually have some big things in the works to make the feedback process even better.

    What does this all mean for me?

    Well, it depends. If you do nothing, you’ll continue getting official OTAs, which are fully-tested and stable. And, now you know the extensive level of community input and testing that takes place before a single line of code ever reaches your device. If you want to check out brand new features (and aren’t afraid of some little bumps along the way), you can flash an Open Beta (Community) Build. Here, you can make your voice heard and directly contribute to our software program.

    We hope this post helped to shine a little light on what we’re doing and how much we value your input. OxygenOS is a true passion project for OnePlus, and we couldn’t do it without you. Let’s keep creating things, together.

    Never Settle.

  2. dsmonteiro
    Community Consultant Staff Member Oct 22, 2021

    Stickied Post
    dsmonteiro , Oct 22, 2021 :
    This post is now outdated. For the most recent information, please check this post here.

    atenaa, the_o2, Cheetosdust and 3 others like this.
  3. awesomeX1
    Honeycomb Oct 13, 2016

  4. Wahoux
    Lollipop Oct 13, 2016

  5. jkb114
    Lollipop Oct 13, 2016

    jkb114 , Oct 13, 2016 :
    Loving this - its a great way to engage the community. Cant wait to see what sort of an impact this has

  6. rarog
    Assistant Head Moderator Assistant Head Moderator Oct 13, 2016

    rarog , Oct 13, 2016 :
    Thx for the insight. In my environment we would call the closed beta "experimental" or "alpha" branch, though with all the code merging, this is relative, you don't have just alpha, beta and stable, all the development is done in multiple branches and not in just one.

    iamrj, mojoyoyo77, Vladut123 and 22 others like this.
  7. pa5t1s
    User of the Year 2014 Oct 13, 2016

    iamrj, lokdev, Vladut123 and 12 others like this.
  8. ant_mir
    Honeycomb Oct 13, 2016

  9. akshat1991
    Cupcake Oct 13, 2016

  10. Bradon H
    Honeycomb Oct 13, 2016

  11. jkb114
    Lollipop Oct 13, 2016

  12. youbi
    Head Moderator Head Moderator Oct 13, 2016

    youbi , Oct 13, 2016 :
    @Brian Yoon Welcome to this community. :p :D And you definitely started with the right foot. :) That's a great first post you just made. :) I think most users will understand how things work now.

    Regarding the ETA's and whats coming, to be honest I don't care about that, you guys can just keep using the "show, don't tell" strategy. If new things keep coming (to all devices :p ) users will also don't care about it in the future.

  13. Bradon H
    Honeycomb Oct 13, 2016

    Bradon H , Oct 13, 2016 :
    Closed Beta is a really small group, and we recruit on an ad-hoc basis.

    The Open Beta program is the best way to contribute. :)

  14. gaster
    Moderator Moderator Oct 13, 2016

    gaster , Oct 13, 2016 :
    Thanks for the insight and the good explanation. Let's see how it ll goes at all

    iamrj, Vladut123, tejasrathod and 8 others like this.
  15. Helbro
    Ice Cream Sandwich Oct 13, 2016

    Helbro , Oct 13, 2016 :
    Really like your guys effort and the effort from everyone who is helping with the Beta programm! Thank you to all!!! :)

  16. jpswer
    Jelly Bean Oct 13, 2016

    jpswer , Oct 13, 2016 :
    OnePlus being really disruptive. No other company is doing this!

    Perfect time for OnePlus to drive market share with those who would have been going for the next Nexus :)

  17. Artur4Life
    Froyo Oct 13, 2016

    akwadhwa171986, Ravi0519 and Archies like this.
  18. Vivek2989
    Gingerbread Oct 13, 2016

  19. locxFIN
    KitKat Oct 13, 2016

    locxFIN , Oct 13, 2016 :
    So is this only for OP3 or are you talking about closed and open betas multiple times a month for OP2 and OPX too?

    Edit: The answer is OP3 only as answered by @Bradon H later on in the thread.
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2016

  20. meatandy
    Oreo Oct 13, 2016

    meatandy , Oct 13, 2016 :
    Cool , there should be some excited people right about now that would be happy test the future builds for the (op3?) and beyond.☺
    Good luck

  21. joaoaa8
    Donut Oct 13, 2016