back to article Google's Android 8.0 Oreo has been served

Google on Monday released Android 8.0 Oreo, the latest update to the world's most widely used operating system, as measured by internet usage. First released as a developer preview in March, when the code was designated by the letter "O" instead of a trademarked confection, Google's mobile operating system hasn't piggybacked …

  1. Len Goddard

    Yeah, right

    I have an HTC phone which has not been upgraded since 5.something. The news that HTC will be shipping or upgrading devices indicates to me that they will expect me to spend £600 to replace a perfectly good phone with something marginally better(?)/different.

    Ain't gonna happen

    1. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Re: Yeah, right

      Android device vendors didn't have the best reputation for regular updates even at the time you bought your HTC.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Yeah, right

        Lenovo just pushed the upgrade to 6.0 for my tablet last month... not quite up-to-date, but better than nothing

        8.0? Not gonna happen!

      2. Richard Jones 1

        Re: Yeah, right

        Moto promised an upgrade to Nougat for my g4 play when I bought i earlier this year, however the service preventer (EE) is failing to make it available. I did wonder about slipping a SIM from the one service provider with an upgrade availability to see if it would deliver the package. The phone was bought as SIM free and has previously worked with that service so it might be worth a punt.

        1. wolfetone Silver badge

          Re: Yeah, right

          Wileyfox have just pushed the Android 7.0 update to my Spark X (to replace Cyanogenmod). Do you think it's working? No. My phone is telling "Oh you want Android 7.0? Ain't gonna happen pal".

          1. handleoclast Silver badge

            Re: Yeah, right


            Wileyfox pushed 7.1.1 onto my Swift months ago. Works fine (for some values of fine).

            There was a horrible push feed called "Zen" that everyone screamed about until Wileyfox introduced a setting to let you disable it (which just about everyone did).

            Truedialler with its annoying ads has mutated into Truephone, which is even more annoying. I have yet to find a way of totally getting rid of it short of rooting my phone (which I'm reluctant to do). However, I have managed to replace the dialler and replaced the call screening with "shouldianswer" which gives me much more control over what info about callers I choose to let the screeners have. But I still worry about Truecaller being spyware and a bloated, battery-wasting piece of shit doing fuck knows what behind my back, so I wish I could get rid of it completely.

            The drawer is a big comedown. I loved the letter bar on the old drawer and the new drawer doesn't have one. But Jina is a lot better than even the original drawer, fully configurable and does everything you want except give you a BJ. You'll have to replace the Foxhole launcher with Nova in order to have Jina replace Foxhole's drawer, but Nova is a better launcher anyway.

            You can't get at UI Tuner any more. Which is really annoying because I used to have cursor left-right arrows pop up on the navbar when the keyboard appeared. But you can get at UI Tuner via third-party apps and sort of get the cursor keys back. You can't tie them to keyboard activation (so they're always on) you have to supply your own icons, and things are buggy enough that the icons vanish (but the hotspots still work) after a reboot. Only fix for that (that I've found) is to go to UI Tuner again, swap two of the hotspots, save, swap them back, save.

            Other than those annoyances (most introduced by Wileyfox themselves, stock Android has a better dialler, better drawer and lets you get at UI tweaks) it's all good. Android 7 is better than Android 6. Wileyfox's version of Android 7 is less so.

            When Wileyfox will push out Oreo is anybody's guess.

            1. wolfetone Silver badge

              Re: Yeah, right


              I've seen as much, but I'm suffering from a few performance issues with Cyanogenmod at the moment so was hoping the upgrade would help it. Interesting you mention Truecaller, that thing has stopped working for me. Every time I go to open it it closes. So I can't block any callers now.

              I'm going away tomorrow and I was hoping to have it all done by then, but I might just muddle through it until I get back and buy a no-name cheap thing from AliExpress and be done with it.

          2. Charlie Clark Silver badge

            Re: Yeah, right

            @wolfetone it looks like only the Swift and the Storm have official builds of LineageOS 14 (the replacement for CM). If this is the case then there is either no maintainer (unlikely in the case of Wileyfox), or there are significant problems with the hardware. If it is the hardware then it must be something pretty odd considering that things like the Samsung SII is officially supported.

        2. Captain Scarlet Silver badge
          Paris Hilton

          Re: Yeah, right

          Hang on, I thought sim free phones would get updates from the handset manufacturer rather than the service preventer (As they are free from their guff)?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            "service preventer"

            Heh. Notwork provider was ours.

        3. ZillaOfManilla

          Re: Yeah, right

          Why is it that EE can block the update on my phone! I don't download it from them or via 3/4G so they can F off. I'd try that tactic of putting another SIM in if you know a provider is allowing it.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Yeah, right

      Yep, already running android 8. Updated later night.

      Perhaps you bought the wrong device???

  2. Updraft102 Silver badge

    "Whether mobile carriers will take advantage of this change to provide more timely updates has yet to be established."

    Well then, please allow me to establish it for you.

    No, it won't.

    Anything else I can do for you?

    1. bazza Silver badge

      Google Need Them To

      And it maybe that they get their way. If all bespoke device drivers get ported into Project Treble, then Google can update literally everything else on the phone, including the kernel, without any input from the manufacturer. or at least that's the idea.

      I think people have gotten so used to Android being unupgradable that most people have little idea that it could be different. It will be interesting to see how it goes.

      It will place a lot of pressure on those manufacturers that doctor the user interface on their phones. They will still have to do a ton of work to move up OS versions. Those who just stick to the stock Android experience and who put all their drivers into Project Treble will be making phones that are more upgradable by Google. Word will get around.

      Of course, they might all just decide to ignore Project Treble and keep things as they are. Cartel...

      1. DougS Silver badge

        Re: Google Need Them To

        If upgrades start coming to end user devices then they have to deal with the consequences/complaints when they don't go well. Apple has only a handful of hardware configurations, all of which they control themselves, and their upgrades aren't always trouble free.

        There's no way Google won't have many more problems than Apple has had if they start sending upgrades directly to phones, considering the massive number of hardware permutations out there and their lack of control over the hardware. It might end up a situation where the upgrades are available but most people disable them because they've had problems in the past or know people who have.

        Google has to tread VERY carefully if they think to start upgrading directly without carrier/OEM involvement!

        1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

          Re: Google Need Them To

          Google has to tread VERY carefully if they think to start upgrading directly without carrier/OEM involvement!

          Not really. They've been pushing abstraction for a few years now and this will probably restrict Android 8 to configurations they can manage. After all we're only talking about officially licensed versions of Android, not the heap of stuff based on AOSP coming out of China.

          1. TechnicalBen Silver badge

            Re: Google Need Them To

            Search/chrome/etc already update from the play store. Adding more features to that, should not be a problem.

            1. DougS Silver badge

              Re: Google Need Them To

              It is lower level updates that will bite you. You can't brick a phone updating its browser, but you can if you update its kernel or drivers.

              1. Charles 9 Silver badge

                Re: Google Need Them To

                But as noted, Google can take a different approach with the hardware. First, they can take the Apple approach and only sanction certain classes of hardware for which knowledge is mature and abundant. Second, we know they're also taking the Microsoft approach with an abstraction layer that can help smooth out differences in hardware by giving the hardware driver writers a common set of targets. This may well have basis in the Server Base System Architecture: an ACPI-like system being developed as ARM progresses into the server market.

                These approaches together with contract terms concerning carrying Google Play Services and Google could well coerce manufacturers to comply with new standards that force them to relinquish update control.

                1. Charlie Clark Silver badge
                  Thumb Up

                  Re: Google Need Them To

                  This may well have basis in the Server Base System Architecture: an ACPI-like system being developed as ARM progresses into the server market.

                  It's almost certain that the chips are all close enough to some kind of reference design from ARM because it's too difficult to customise it; there are still only a handful of designers of phone SoCs. There might still be problems with custom drivers, but given how well things like LineageOS cope with the relevant blobs, this shouldn't be too much of a problem when it comes to running an upgrade, though it's possible that some apps might no longer work. That could lead to some interesting battles: "Google broke our camera app with a security update…" but I suspect most manufacturers that care will be pleased to see Google taking the lead here.

                  1. Charles 9 Silver badge

                    Re: Google Need Them To

                    The trick is that ARM isn't responsible for a lot of the peripheral hardware: only the CPU architecture and usually the GPU that's paired with it if it's a Mali. All the rest has historically been handled by custom memory maps that ARE in control of the SoC manufacturers, and they ARE motivated to make things unique to each SoC to keep poaching down. With things like SBSA, however, the mapping can be standardized so that you don't have to compile a custom system for each iteration.

      2. Charlie Clark Silver badge

        Re: Google Need Them To

        then Google can update literally everything

        Ah, but what can they practically update?

        1. JLV Silver badge

          Re: Google Need Them To

          >>then Google can update literally everything

          >Ah, but what can they practically update?

          Ah, but what _will_ they _factually_ update? Not their own late 2013 Nexus 5, that's fer sure. Abandonware for a year already.

  3. Paul J Turner

    Next Gen

    Continuing the choc' and lollies theme and needing one starting with 'P'; may I suggest 'Penguin', the well-known chocolate bar.

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge

      Re: Next Gen

      I can think of other words beginning with 'P'...

      Peanut Butter!

      I'm waiting for them to put some 3D skeuomorphic renderings into the base system. At least some shadows around the buttons, for crying out loud!

      until then... meh [and don't force me to download/upgrade unless I _WANT_ to dammit!]

      1. 1Rafayal

        Re: Next Gen

        @bombastic bob

        why are you always whinging on about 3D UI's ?

    2. dajames Silver badge

      Re: Next Gen

      Continuing the choc' and lollies theme and needing one starting with 'P'; may I suggest 'Penguin', the well-known chocolate bar.

      Good idea! ...

      ... but I would almost bet money that they go for "Popcorn". You read it here first!

      1. Charles 9 Silver badge

        Re: Next Gen

        But I wouldn't really classify popcorn as a candy. At least Gingerbread can be classed as a sweet. My money's on Popsicle, and I had it right on Oreo.

        1. Roj Blake Silver badge

          Re: But I wouldn't really classify popcorn as a candy.

          Froyo and honeycomb aren't really candy either though, and they've both been used.

    3. JimboSmith Silver badge

      Re: Next Gen

      Can they pick something that those bastards at Mondelez/Kraft don't make please. After reneging on their promise to keep the Somerdale factory open if they gained control of Cadbury I want nothing to do with Kraft/Mondelez.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    awesome I cant wait for this latest version of android to run 10 times worse on the same hardware, nag me till I acidentally hit update and reduce some previously usable hadware to the capabilities of paperweight or doorstop.

    1. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      I've recently upgraded some KitKat handsets to LineageOS, which is effectively Android 7.1, and I haven't noticed any drop in performance ... at all.

  5. WonkoTheSane

    Already here

    My Nexus 6P got the update last night.

    1. Adam W

      Re: Already here

      Mine (Pixel XL) had the update ready to go this morning. I've been using the beta for a while and it is a noticeable improvement on battery life and data usage.

      1. WonkoTheSane

        Re: Already here

        I notice we both got downvotes. Looks like there's an Apple Fanboi in the room...

  6. Chronos Silver badge
    Thumb Up


    Right again. I really should do the lottery this week.

    1. Uncle Slacky Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: Oreo

      Same here - I predicted "Nougat" correctly here a while back too. I think the next one could be "Peanut Brittle", or possibly something to do with pineapples if "brittle" gives the wring connotation.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Oreo

        Peppermint (Pattie). You heard it here first.

      2. samzeman

        Re: Oreo

        I'm going with Popcorn. It's not sweet really, but it is snappy and sounds like something Google likes.

        1. Charles 9 Silver badge

          Re: Oreo

          Nah, I say Popsicle.

          1. Charles 9 Silver badge

            Re: Oreo

            Remember, Android 5 was Lollipop, so they've done generic treats on a stick before, and 4.0-4.1 was Ice Cream Sandwich and 2.2 was Frozen Yogurt, so they've also done cold stuff before.

  7. Lord Elpuss Silver badge


    Why, in heaven's name? The only conceivable reason I can think of would be to automate 2FA; and realistically how many people use the 'Please phone me' option with that.

    Balancing this against the massive potential for abuse; premium number callback and snooping to name the first things that come to mind..

    1. HxBro

      Happy to let an app deal with my calls

      Let it deal with "microsoft support", "you've had an accident", "ppi", "the mother in law support call", "wife"

      If I could train it to speak and sound like me, I'm onto a winner

    2. Richard 81

      Oh when will Google allow us to revoke permissions to apps. If an app that has no business being able to send and receive texts or voice calls, or access mobile numbers etc. still lists them in their required permissions, we should bloody well be able to turn those permissions off.

      1. Trilkhai

        Unless I'm misunderstanding what you mean, Google included the ability to set & revoke each app's permissions on a fine-grained level in Nougat. It works in the almost-stock version that came on my Moto E4, at least...

      2. iron Silver badge

        @Richard 81

        You can. That functionality has been present for at least a couple of versions now.

      3. Rob Crawford

        Oh when will Google allow us to revoke permissions to apps.

        I can't actually remember how long I have been able to do that, but it turned up in Android 6 (Marshmallow I think it was)

        Maybe you need an OS update

        1. sabroni Silver badge

          Maybe you need an OS update

          Well, they have an Android phone so the chance of it being up to date are pretty fucking slim....

        2. Boothy

          Quote: Oh when will Google allow us to revoke permissions to apps.

          Settings > Apps > Select an App > click Permissions.

          You just turn on and off as you want. Obviously switching off a permission could break the app, but apps are required to play nice, and when launched, it should simply ask for the permission again if it really needs it.

          Also permissions these days are on a 'when needed' basis. i.e. Apps should only ask up front for a specific permission, if that permission is needed immediately. Otherwise permissions should be asked for as needed.

          As an example, I've got Amazon Shopping on my phone, it has 7 permissions listed, such as Camera, Contacts etc. Not one of them is enabled, as I've never used a feature than needed them (I just check orders, and occasionally buy something).

          1. fuzzie

            Sadly, I have yet to find an app that degrades gracefully when denied a permission. They normally go all sulking and won't budge until you relent.

            Silly, but pertinent example... I created a Calendar event, and wanted to add a subject/description. Calendar insisted on Location/GPS access, probably because one of the editable fields is location, which you cannot edit without it insisting to look it up in Maps. I'd be dead happy with a simple text field (optionally Location verified if I explicitly asked). There was no way out of that edit trap without allowing Location access.

      4. JimboSmith Silver badge

        The first thing I do when I get a new phone is to go through the settings and disable any permissions that I don't think the app should have. I usually spend around 15 mins initially and then check each new app after installing it. I also use NoRoot Firewall to stop things from accessing the data connection on my phone too.

    3. Dave 126 Silver badge

      > ANSWER_PHONE_CALLS? Why, in heaven's name?

      An on-device answer-phone, perhaps?

  8. Barry Rueger Silver badge

    Troll much. Reg?

    A major part of Oreo's mission is to hasten operating system upgrades.

    Seriously? This was said with a straight face?

    Please Google, do tell how you'll force my carrier to actually let me install Oreo on my six month old name brand phone.

    1. ratfox Silver badge

      Re: Troll much. Reg?

      I assume it means that whenever you finally buy a phone with Oreo, years from now, that phone will be updated more often...

      Somewhere around Android Toffee, in 2022, they'll finally have a proper system for upgrades.

      1. TechnicalBen Silver badge

        Re: Android Toffee?

        Android "Toffee"? I don't think that name will stick.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Android Toffee?

          "Android "Toffee"? I don't think that name will stick."

          Of course not. Still, they'll find some way to fudge it.

        2. Anonymous South African Coward Silver badge

          Re: Android Toffee?

          "Toffee" have another slang meaning here in South Africa...

  9. J J Carter Silver badge

    It can be done!

    Been getting OTA updates witout carrier involvement to my Lumia 950 for ages.

  10. Dan 55 Silver badge

    Glass half-full interpretation

    privacy should improve with Oreo

    A few years too late, but good news nonetheless.


    Might be good for WhatsApp-like messengers but it's not compatibile with previous versions so everybody's probably still going to slurp contacts.


    Oh FFS. (And that's the glass half-full interpretation.)

    1. Boothy

      Re: Glass half-full interpretation

      I had a quick look, and this looks more like improving granularity in permissions.

      In that answering the phone, and reading phone numbers, can already be done by applications. So this isn't adding something that couldn't previously be done.

      The new permissions, as far as I can see after a quick bit of looking around, are around creating a specific permission for that specific function (and some improvements to related APIs), rather than giving blanket access to the phone.

      Although of course this does need developers to update their apps to use the new permissions.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Re: Glass half-full interpretation

        Answering the phone programmatically before Android O is hacky, undocumented, unreliable, and may mean that the user has to install the app in a strange way... i.e. you shouldn't be doing it.

  11. JimmyPage Silver badge

    If this upgrade is anything like the last ...

    I had a WIleyfox Swift which was note-perfect for 15 months.

    Then Android 7 was pushed out.

    Since then:

    1) Bluetooth keeps forgetting pairings

    2) App settings keep getting forgotten

    3) The Vox SIM will randomly be dropped, requiring a restart (this is doubly annoying as it can happen when driving, at which point the phone asks what SIM to use for calls before it will make any).

    1. TechnicalBen Silver badge

      Re: If this upgrade is anything like the last ...

      Sounds like you got more than just OS problems on that handset then?

    2. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: If this upgrade is anything like the last ...

      Well, Android 5.1 and 6.1 were CyanogenOS 12.1 and 13.1. See if you can install Lineage OS 14 on it, which is the community effort after Cyanogen stopped doing OSes. Guide here. You'll lose everything though. Try a backup with ClockworkMod Helium which is a bit fiddly but allows you to get a backup of most things without root.

      Or factory reset your phone. Maybe the migration from CyanogenOS didn't go properly and a factory reset will fix it.

    3. VinceH Silver badge

      Re: If this upgrade is anything like the last ...

      I have a Storm, and haven't suffered the problems you describe - but there were other issues. A couple that spring to mind:

      One, not with Android 7 as such, is that Truecaller is now used - previously it was an option, and I thought it was horrid, so didn't use it. :(

      Another, which may or may not be related to your app settings, is that there is inconsistency in where some things are set. For example, the alarm tones. There's an option to set the tone from within the clock app, and a way to do it through the phone's settings - but setting them from the clock app does nothing.

      There were a few other annoyances at the time which I've now forgotten, but with a little effort I managed to get the phone set up how I preferred again (the use of Truecaller aside).

  12. Richard 81


    I like the old emojis. Those look a bit facebookey.

    1. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Re: Aww

      The old emojis were peculiar to Android, which lead to confusion when communicating with people on other platforms.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Aww

        Yes but they were 100% better. A lot of people are going to be very annoyed at losing their blob emojis.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Aww

      These look worse than anything I have ever seen. However I have not seen the Emoji Movie.

    3. Trilkhai

      Re: Aww

      While the new ones aren't my favorite style, I don't find them quite as grating as the melting gummy-treats... Actually, if they'd *really* been blobs — wavy-edged splats centered in their frames — I probably would've liked them for their quirkiness. Having them puddled at the bottom of the frame like somebody stepped on (or possibly microwaved) a gumdrop, however, is definitely not appealing to me.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So still can't do what Microsoft could do?

    So despite being the poor abandoned cousin, they still can't do what MS did?

    The phones didn't care what make it was, you just upgraded. Sure you could wait for the "Official" vendor version, or you could go stuff it and go with MS's

    Oh and to remove 3rd party vendor software. Click > Hold > Remove.


    1. samzeman

      Re: So still can't do what Microsoft could do?

      If I'm reading this right, that's what versions Oreo and above will start to do, upgrade regardless of carrier/producer.

      Removing bloatware however, I could really go for some of that. It's the reason I'm a Motorola fanboy, they have barely any and it can all be uninstalled I think. Either way I don't know it's there and I only remembered there was some when I thought about it just now.

      1. JimboSmith Silver badge

        Re: So still can't do what Microsoft could do?

        Oh I'd love to be able to remove the bloatware on my Samsung without having to root it.

    2. nkuk

      Re: So still can't do what Microsoft could do?

      What about the multitude of handsets that Microsoft merrily abandoned during each upgrade? MS was just as bad, if not worse, at leaving customers behind.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    (My life is better)

    Just to let you know, my iPhone gets all the latest updates from Apple in a very timely fashion. I'm enjoying sitting in my sunny walled garden, listening to the chaos and wailing from outside. The best thing you Android owners can do now is to buy an iPhone. And while you're at it, ditch your nasty plastic PCs and buy a sleek aluminium iMac. It'll literally make you a better person.

    I do understand it'll hurt some of you to read this, but I truly believe I'm completely right.

    PS If you'd like any other advice on how to make aspects of your life better, be it purchases, relationships, financial decisions, just ask by replying to this post. Lines close at the end of today.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: (My life is better)

      How do i stop everyone hating me because I come across as a smug git? ;)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: (My life is better)

        I always feel the internet would be a much better place with more smugness.

    2. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: (My life is better)

      What should I do if I've got a an iPhone or a sleek aluminium iMac and I want more storage?

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: (My life is better)

      I'm humourless and must take comedy posts literally. What do I need to buy to get some friends?

  15. Christopher Rogers

    Surely if memory and battery usage is better controlled, many older devices are coming back into usefulness?

    If Apple can upgrade ipads from 2013, surely Samsung/Google can upgrade my flagship GS6 from 2015?!

    1. Cuddles Silver badge

      "If Apple can upgrade ipads from 2013, surely Samsung/Google can upgrade my flagship GS6 from 2015?!"

      Yes, they probably can. The S6 already has Android 7 and gets relatively regular security updates, so I don't see any reason to assume it's suddenly been abandoned. Probably be a few months of course. Your carrier might be getting in the way of updates, but that's not Samsung and Google's fault.

      1. Gio Ciampa

        "surely Samsung/Google can upgrade my flagship GS6 from 2015"

        2015? Samsung? Pull the other one - I'll be surprised if they're still providing updates for devices from Q1 2017, let alone the "prehistory" that is 2015...

  16. Anonymous South African Coward Silver badge

    Some devices on Android 4, and some on Android 7, and I think I'll stay that way for a long, long time.

    Automated updates have a way to b0rk things when you don't want it, and don't need it.

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Aren't you worried about security issues, though, which can come over the radio chips even if you don't do anything unusual?

  17. James Anderson

    OREOS -- yuck

    Bad karma naming your release after a chemical concoction of sugar, black food colouring and fats of unknown providence.

    Whats the software equivalent of diabetes?

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