ColorOS 11 review: OPPO’s customisation features add zing to Android 11 OS
Like many peers, Chinese smartphone maker OPPO uses a custom-tuned Android operating system on its smartphones. Named ColorOS, this custom OS is built on Android but with a custom skin on top. The OPPO ColorOS has come a long way over the years and its latest iteration, ColorOS 11, is much improved from the previous one, ColorOS 7. Based on Android 11 operating system, ColorOS 11 brings most of the features that Google operating systems natively support. Besides, it boasts several value-added features and customisation options for a personalised user experience.
ColorOS 11 does not look thematically different from ColorOS 7 but it has new features and customisation options that make all the difference. From custom wallpapers to new accent colours, fonts and notification drawer icons, theme customisations are deeply integrated within the OS for a personalised user experience. Moreover, some of the older-generation features have also been enhanced. For example, the fingerprint icon animation gets additional effects and the system-wide dark mode now supports colour accents. In ColorOS 11, customisation options are available for most commonly used features. The customisations add zing to the otherwise minimal Android 11 OS.
As for value-added features, ColorOS 11 incorporates the Google Lens in three finger screenshot window. The Google Lens integration is limited to the text translation feature. Nonetheless, it provides a quick way to translate text in native languages on the go. Another minor but relevant value-added feature is the ‘Low Battery Message’, which sends a message with the phone’s location to pre-selected contacts as soon as the phone’s battery drops below the threshold limit.
Speaking of battery, the ColorOS 11 brings a ‘Super Power Saving’ mode which restricts the phone’s activity to the minimum in order to extend on-battery time. Interestingly, the mode lets you choose apps (maximum 5) that show up on your phone’s home screen in the ‘Super Power Saving’ mode. One must, however, be careful while selecting these apps as the phone disables every other service except the ones related to these apps in the power-saving mode.
Overall, ColorOS 11 offers a refined user experience. It boasts lots of options to personalise its look and feel. While customisations gives it a touch of novelty, the value-added features round up the UI’s practical utility. ColorOS 11 is one of the better iterations of Android 11. However, it is restricted to OPPO smartphones and will be rolled out in batches. The Realme UI 2.0 seems to be similar to ColorOS 11. Therefore, aside from OPPO smartphones, you can get a similar feel and experience on Realme smartphones, too.