Your OnePlus smartphone ships with a skinned version of Android known as OxygenOS. OnePlus is pretty good about issuing updates in a timely manner to its smartphones, even older ones like the OnePlus 3T. However, if those updates aren’t fast enough for you, there’s always OxygenOS beta.
If you want to be on the cutting edge with your OnePlus smartphone, you need to install OxygenOS beta. The beta builds get new features, new enhancements, and even totally new versions of Android before anyone else.
Please note: The beta builds will only work on unlocked versions of OnePlus devices. If you bought your device from a carrier, such as T-Mobile, the software is slightly different and beta builds will not work.
You might think installing OxygenOS beta will be difficult to do, but it’s actually quite simple. All you’ll need to get started is the following:
- A OnePlus smartphone (naturally)
- Access to a WiFi internet connection
- About 20 minutes of your day
If you’re ready to install OxygenOS beta on your OnePlus device, the steps are listed out for you below.
Please note: Installing OxygenOS beta will likely go smoothly and your data will be fine. However, it’s always best to make a backup before installing beta software. Also keep in mind that if you decide you want to go back to the stable version of OxygenOS, you will have to do a fresh install, which will wipe your data.
Step One: Download OxygenOS beta software
The first thing you’re going to need is the proper beta software for your OnePlus smartphone. Luckily, the software is always easy to find at OnePlus.com. However, to make things even easier, use your OnePlus smartphone to visit one of the links below to be taken straight to the correct page:
If you’re wondering where the links are for the OnePlus X, OnePlus 2, and OnePlus One, unfortunately, there are no OxygenOS beta builds for these devices anymore as they are too old. There also are no beta builds yet for the OnePlus 7 Pro or the OnePlus 7 because they are too new.
Once you are on the appropriate software download page (remember, you should be viewing the page on the OnePlus device on which you want to install the beta), click the tab link near the top of the page to go to the Beta Build section. Once there, you’ll see a big red button that says “download.” Click that, and wait for the download to finish.
Step Two: Move software to the parent directory
Now that you’ve downloaded the OxygenOS beta software, you need to move it to the right place on your phone. Assuming you downloaded the ZIP file to the default location (your phone’s Downloads folder), it’s just a matter of heading into there and moving the file somewhere else.
You can check out the screenshots below for help, but here are the steps:
- Open up your app drawer and find the File Manager app (if you use a different file explorer app, use that one).
- Tap on the box labeled Downloads.
- Find the file labeled something like “OnePlus5Oxygen_23…”. The file name might be slightly different for you, but that’s the general format.
- Tap-and-hold the appropriate file. A check mark should appear next to the filename.
- Tap the three-dot menu icon in the upper right corner. Select “Cut.”
- You’ll automatically be brought to the parent directory of your phone. That’s exactly where you want to be, so hit “Paste” in the upper right corner.
- You should see the file near the bottom of the list.
Once you’ve performed those steps, you’re ready to install OxygenOS beta!
Step Three: Install OxygenOS beta
You’re almost done! You’ve downloaded OxygenOS beta and moved it to the appropriate directory. Now, all you need to do is install the software.
Head into Android settings by either tapping the Settings app in your app drawer or tapping the settings icon in your notification pulldown menu. Once in Android settings, the next steps are slightly different depending on which version of Android you’re currently using:
For Android 9 Pie and above: Scroll down, tap System and then tap System Updates.
For Android 8.1 Oreo and below: Scroll down and tap System Updates.
However you get there, the system updates page should look something like this:
Tap the gear icon in the top right corner. Then select the option that says “Local Upgrade.”
Assuming you haven’t downloaded a bunch of other OxygenOS beta builds before, there should be just one file listed. Tap that file!
Your phone will ask you to confirm you want to install the file, which of course you do. Click to confirm and the OxygenOS beta build will begin to install. When it’s done, your phone will automatically restart and go through some more install stuff. Just let it do its thing (I suggest having a cup of tea, it could take upwards of ten minutes or so).
When your phone fully restarts, congratulations: you’re running OxygenOS beta! If you want to check to be sure, simply go to Settings > About Phone and find the section labeled “OxygenOS Version.” There, you should see something with the word “Beta” in it.
Now that you are on the beta build, you will receive notifications of new beta updates whenever they become available, just like you would on the stable version. However, updates should come faster than before and might include new features (and possibly new bugs).
Hopefully, you found this guide helpful. Let us know in the comments if you faced any issues!