The latest OnePlus 5 Over-The-Air (OTA) update has fixed one of our biggest bugbears with this brilliant flagship smartphone, while adding various other enhancements and tweaks. Rolling out from today, OxygenOS 4.5.8 could be the best thing to ever happen to the OnePlus 5.
This premium handset costs from £449, which is a damn sight less than most of its rivals such as the Samsung Galaxy S8 and HTC U11. Despite this relatively low asking price, you get a gorgeous display, tight design work, unbeatable performance and a friendly yet fully customisable user interface.
What's wrong with the OnePlus 5?
However, this brilliant handset isn't quite the perfect device. We have three grumbles with the OnePlus 5, two of which - the lack of expandable storage and the water-vulnerable finish - are admittedly quite minor complaints. After all, you get quite a lot of storage space packed in to begin with, while you simply have to resist taking the phone into the bath for a sudsy soak.
Our third issue concerns that otherwise solid dual-lens camera. As you'll see in our OnePlus 5 camera comparison, this snapper holds up well against the competition, including other dual-lens efforts on the Huawei P10 Plus and iPhone 7 Plus. That is, in every area except for video recording.
You see, the OnePlus 5's image stabilisation capability when you boost the video resolution above Full HD at 30 frames-per-second is, frankly, rather pants. Try moving even a little bit while shooting 4K resolution video and you'll be left with a jumpy, jerky bit of footage like below.
The YouTube comments sum it up quite succinctly. One viewer remarks that it looks like an earthquake is happening, while others state the lack of stabilisation has put them off buying the phone. Ouch.
We were frankly surprised that this problem exists at all, as OnePlus vastly improved the video stabilisation on the OnePlus 3 and 3T in a much-needed update, prior to the launch of the OnePlus 5. Why this tech wasn't on the OnePlus 5 from release is rather befuddling.
How does the OnePlus 5 OxygenOS 4.5.8 update help?
Thankfully OnePlus has responded to the criticisms and has rectified this camera stabilisation issue with the latest phone update.
OxygenOS 4.5.8, the latest version of OnePlus' software, is rolling out to handsets from the time of publication. The highlight of this version is vastly improved EIS (electronic image stabilisation) for 4K video recording, to reduce the shudders and shakes when filming at Ultra HD resolution. Which basically means a significant improvement in the quality of video shot on the OnePlus 5.
This update was previously attempted in version 4.5.7 of OxygenOS, which began rolling out to the handset at the tail end of July 2017. However, some users reported sudden issues with performance when gaming after downloading and installing this update, so OnePlus withdrew that rollout and is now working on the bug-free 4.5.8.
Does the OnePlus 5 video stabilisation update actually improve 4K video quality?
In a word, yes.
Before, any kind of motion resulted in quite sickening shake. Pretty much every single hand tremor and step was replicated on-screen, which meant you could only really shoot Ultra HD video if you were stood as still as possible.
As you can see in the below side-by-side comparison, the OxygenOS update has completely solved this issue. By cropping in and balancing the video footage, you're left with a smuch smoother result. Of course, the video post-update also has a more 'mechanical' feel about it, as if a cyborg were shooting it, especially when turning left or right. However that's something we've also noticed on other handsets lacking OIS.
What other improvements does OxygenOS 4.5.8 bring?
As well as boosting the stabilisation for 4K footage, the new OnePlus 5 update makes several other improvements to the battery life. As OnePlus states, these take the form of standby battery enhancements, as part of its on-going optimisations of the phone’s battery life.
Here's a full list of the changes and additions the update includes:
New features added in the update
- Added EIS for 4K video recording
- Introduction of the new OnePlus Slate font
Updates to existing features
- Updated Android security patch level to July 1, 2017
- Updated the latest GMS package
Optimisations and bug fixes in the update
- WiFi connectivity improvements
- Smoother automatic backlight adjustment
- Standby battery enhancements
- Fixed occasional problem where sound is played out of the speakers when earphones are plugged in
- Fixed camera shutter sound bug in silent mode (for Indian region)
- Fixed missing sound channels when recording videos
- Fixes a bug with OxygenOS 4.5.7 rollout, which caused performance issues when gaming
When will my OnePlus 5 update to Oxygen OS 4.5.8 and how do I update?
OxygenOS 4.5.8 is being pushed out OTA right now, although this will be an incremental rollout, which means you shouldn't expect it to immediately be available for your phone immediately. Broader rollout will begin in earnest later in August, so you might have a wait of a couple of weeks on your hands.
To update, head to the OnePlus 5's settings menu and scroll down to the System Updates section. This will manually search for any software packages waiting in the wings, so you can download and install the latest version of OxygenOS. Just remember to connect to a WiFi network first, as it's not a small update.
You can pick up the OnePlus 5 exclusively on contract from O2 in the UK, from £37 per month.