Best daily deals

Links on Android Authority may earn us a commission. Learn more.

What is OnePlus Zen Mode and how does it work?

Zen Mode on OnePlus devices will lock you out of using your phone for a set period of time.
How To
By
August 9, 2021
OnePlus Zen Mode Hero
C. Scott Brown / Android Authority

OnePlus offers a feature called Zen Mode on plenty of its smartphones. As the name suggests, the intention of the OnePlus Zen Mode is to bring some peace into your life by helping you put down your phone and focus on the real world for a bit.

How does it do this? In a nutshell, it locks you out of your phone for a set period of time. Your phone is powered on and there are a few functions you can still use, but overall your phone becomes inoperable.

If you’re the kind of person who finds it hard to put their phone down and focus on tasks — or just difficult to “unplug” for a few minutes — Zen Mode is perfect for you. Check out our guide below on how it works, which phones it works on, and more!

See also: Everything you need to know about OnePlus

What does OnePlus Zen Mode do?

OnePlus 7 Pro Zen Mode
Zen Mode

When you turn on Zen Mode, your phone goes into a kind of deep freeze for a certain period of time. During this time, you can’t open apps, send text messages, change settings, or perform most other smartphone functions.

The only two things you still will be able to do are make and receive phone calls and take photos. However, after you snap a photo you can’t view your full gallery to edit or post that photo to social media. Also, while you can receive calls from anyone, you can only make emergency phone calls (i.e. 911, 999, etc.).

Turning on Zen Mode forces you to stop using your phone for a set amount of time.

Once you turn the feature on, there is no going back: even restarting your phone won’t turn it off. The default active time is 20 minutes, so you will need to wait at least 20 minutes before your phone returns to normal. As such, use this function carefully!

As an additional feature, the Zen Mode app can also notify you if you’ve used your phone without stopping for a set amount of time. The default is two hours, but you can change the reminder window to various other times.

Now, with the Zen Mode 2.0 update, you can customize your peace of mind a little more to your liking. The app features a revamped UI that allows you to choose your own theme. The time limits haven’t changed though, so most of the app still functions as normal.

Which phones have Zen Mode functionality?

OnePlus 9 Pro vs OnePlus 9 camera vs camera
Eric Zeman / Android Authority

OnePlus introduced Zen Mode with the OnePlus 7 Pro. Since then, the company has pushed the feature to other phones in its roster.

It should be noted that this is a OnePlus exclusive feature — you won’t find it on phones from other manufacturers. However, other manufacturers might offer a similar function under a different name.

Since OnePlus pushed out its latest Zen Mode 2.0 update, you’ll be able to give it a test on the following devices:

  • OnePlus 9 series — Includes the 9, 9 Pro, and 9R
  • OnePlus 8 series — Includes the 8, 8 Pro, and 8T
  • Nord series — Includes the Nord, Nord 2, N10, N100, and N200
  • OnePlus 7 series — Includes the 7, 7 Pro, 7T, and 7T Pro
  • OnePlus 6 series — Includes 6 and 6T

If you own a phone that came out before the OnePlus 6 series, you will not have access to Zen Mode. It is unlikely OnePlus will bring this feature to any of its older devices.

How to use Zen Mode as a single user:

  1. Unlock your phone and pull down the notification shade.
  2. Pull down the shade again to fully expose the Quick Tiles settings (see screenshots below).
  3. Find and tap on the Zen Mode Quick Tile to open up the app. Note: You can also download the standalone app from the Google Play Store.
  4. Once you’re in Zen Mode you are ready to go. Change the length of time in the middle of the page to whatever you wish and then hit the Let’s Go button.
  5. The app will ask you to confirm that you are ready and warn you that there’s no way to back out.
  6. Hit the “Confirm” button and then a timer will begin. Once the countdown is over, you enter Zen Mode and won’t be able to exit until the set time limit is over.
  7. Once the timer depletes, the app will congratulate you.

How to use Zen Mode with friends:

  1. Unlock your phone and pull down the notification shade.
  2. Pull down the shade again to fully expose the Quick Tiles settings (see screenshots below).
  3. Find and tap on the Zen Mode Quick Tile to open up the app. Note: You can also download the standalone app from the Google Play Store.
  4. In the app, hit the icon that looks like two people.
  5. If you have a code provided by a friend, hit the Join A Room button and enter that code. You’ll then be able to do Zen Mode with your friends in that room.
  6. If you want to make a room, hit the Create A Room button. Follow the steps and create a code for your room.
  7. Share that code with your friends and wait for them to join before starting the group Zen.

Screenshots


That’s everything there is to know about OnePlus Zen Mode. Stay tuned for more Zen Mode updates as they happen!