T-Mobile OnePlus 6T gets delayed updates than regular one, and it seems intentional
OnePlus may be popular among enthusiasts and power users but at least in US, you need to tie up with some carriers (preferably the ‘Big Four‘) to be a household name. After truckload of speculations and rumors, it actually happened – OnePlus 6T can be purchased through T-Mobile.
One of the main issues with carrier exclusive phones is the delay in updates. While the unlocked or generic variant gets updates frequently, the carrier often slows down the flow unnecessary. Certification or compatibility check with the network are the reasons they mention.
In case of T-Mobile exclusive OnePlus 6T, users are facing similar problems. While the regular version is getting feature updates and security fixes in a steady manner, the T-Mobile variant is left behind. For example, they started rolling out December security patch almost at the end of January.
T-Mobile’s official support page about OP6T updates are not even updated regularly. And their support stuffs are apparently clueless about update policies (as shared by one of the users):
I also contacted tmo customer support and the rep didn’t knew about it and we both searched online for any info. Finally found an article online finally.
Digging deeper, we have uncovered some unusual facts. OEMs like Google or OnePlus do upload updates packages on their site to help users performing a manual update. Not only the T-Mobile variant is excluded from that list, but they also removed the ability to do a ‘Local upgrade’.
It means even if someone is able to capture the OTA URL and share the update package with community, there is no way one can utilize it to speed up the wait-for-update queue processing. Sideloading from recovery is not applicable here as OnePlus removed it from their stock recovery for devices with A/B partitioning scheme.
Moreover, the T-Mobile variant does not use the standard OnePlus OTA client. Instead of it, they use a forked version of Google’s Over The Air Updates API.
There is an ongoing discussion among Oxygen Updater community members about possible ways to support the ill-fated T-Mobile OnePlus 6T. With the current set of imposed disabilities, the future is not bright.
— Ryan (@BTDT_DvDarkman) December 28, 2018
Modders have already found ways to fully convert the T-Mobile variant to regular one, even without SIM or bootloader unlock. While the conversion will give you features like dual SIM, much frequent updates, an easily unlockable (and relockable) bootloader and the ability to participate in the Open Beta initiative, the process is not for everyone.
It would be nice if the different version of the 6T that @TMobile sells received timely updates.
Still on the November security update and the issues that were fixed in the non T-Mobile version have not been.
— Bill_UT (@bill_ut) January 19, 2019
TL;DR: T-Mobile OnePlus 6T is plagued with intentionally crippled update policy, which makes regular users suffer.
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