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Oppo now promises to match Samsung for updates (Update: Oppo clarifies)

Update: Oppo has clarified that it's indeed bringing four years of Android version updates.
By
December 27, 2022
Oppo Find X5 Pro ColorOS 12 apps
Robert Triggs / Android Authority
TL;DR
  • Oppo has announced a revised update policy for upcoming flagship phones.
  • The company says it’ll now offer four ‘major Color OS updates’ and five years of security patches.
  • Oppo later clarified that it will offer four years of Android version upgrades.

Update: December 27, 2022 (12:08 AM ET): Oppo has now confirmed to Android Authority that it’s indeed offering four years of Android OS updates rather than four Color OS skin updates.

This means that Oppo is indeed matching Samsung when it comes to the length of its update commitments. However, as stated below, Oppo’s pledge only applies to select flagships launching in 2023.

Original article: December 20, 2022 (8:34 AM ET): Oppo announced a new update policy just over a year ago, pledging three major OS updates and four years of security patches for Find X series flagships. Now, the company has announced a revised policy for flagship phones.

More specifically, the Chinese smartphone brand said it now guarantees four major Color OS updates and five years of security patches for users. It also noted that this applied to “selected flagship models” starting in 2023.

Oppo indeed confirmed to Android Authority that this policy only applies to future flagship devices launching next year. So Find X5 Pro and Find N owners aren’t included in this new pledge.

Android OS or Color OS updates?

It’s curious to see Oppo specifically saying it guarantees four major “Color OS” updates rather than four major Android version updates. When the company announced a revised upgrade policy a year ago, it specifically noted that it was offering three major “Android version” updates.

This is an important distinction, as we’ve seen some companies like Xiaomi upgrade their software overlay while leaving the underlying Android version intact. So Oppo pledging to offer four major Color OS updates means it could theoretically only offer one or two Android version upgrades but delivers four Color OS updates. For what it’s worth, the company indeed offers incremental Color OS releases such as Color OS 12.1 and 11.1 that don’t leap to new Android versions.

We’ve nevertheless asked Oppo to clarify whether the pledge indeed covers Color OS updates or the underlying Android version. We’ll update the article if/when the company gets back to us.

Otherwise, we’re glad to see the company offering five years of security patches. This matches Samsung and Google, while also matching OnePlus after it announced a revised upgrade policy earlier this month as well. But we hope to see the BBK brand bring its older update policy (three OS updates, four years of security patches) to mid-range phones.