Only a handful of Android OEMs maintain a consistent public beta channel for evaluating new features and bug fixes before incorporating them to the official release. OnePlus, being one of them, shares periodic Open Beta builds side by side with the stable channel OTA updates.

Update frequency of different channels by OnePlus

Anyone can try these builds (including you). Once a new feature or change passes initial quality tests in Closed Beta, they’ll be added to Open Beta. The software here is much more stable and less likely to include major bugs, but still not quite ready for final release. To make a long story short, Open Beta is the second, semi-public step for feedback and bug testing, ensuring that only the best code makes it to official release.


However, the T-Mobile branded OnePlus phones (both 2018’s OnePlus 6T and the OnePlus 7 Pro from this year) are excluded from this initiative. Apart from a number of limitations, the delays in delivering software updates and the lack of a dedicated beta channel are crippling T-Mobile customers.

T-Mobile OnePlus 7 Pro (GM1915) running global OxygenOS 9.5.3.GM21AA; people prefer to convert the firmware to get timely updates

In past, we saw how the inadequacy of real life beta testing affected T-Mobile RCS rollout for the OnePlus 6T. Seems that both OnePlus and T-Mobile are discussing the matter seriously, as they have announced the Friendly User Testing (FUT) program their phones.

This program will be run by our North American QT team.

We will be accepting 100 people into this FUT program, and the chosen users will need to meet certain requirements. The builds will be available as an OTA update and should not require clean flash or loss of data. However, as these are pre-release builds, while very unlikely, there’s still a chance of data loss that you should be aware of.

Judging from the description, the FUT program is nothing but a distant cousin of the closed beta scheme. The selected testers will be provided special builds via standard OTA update. However, there is no reference of rollback builds or Android Q beta eligibility.

The eligibility criteria are as follows:

  • Use a OnePlus 6T or 7 Pro TMO version
  • Sign an NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement) with OnePlus to be part of this program
  • Be an active member of OnePlus Community
  • Be willing to constantly communicate and provide feedback to the OnePlus team

Interested users can apply by filling in this online form, where the OEM and the wireless carrier want to know about your daily average usage of SMS or listening to music.

Are they planning to improve the stock messaging app and Android Auto compatibility? Looks like so

Hurry, as the company allows only 100 volunteers for the first round! We hope OnePlus will expand the program in future and bring the true vibe of Open Beta releases for the carrier branded phones as well.

Did you buy your OnePlus phone from T-Mobile or directly from the OEM? Let us know by commenting below.

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Kingshuk De
896 Posts

I came from a mixed background of Statistics and Computer Science. My research domains included embedded computer systems, mobile computing and delay tolerant networks in post-disaster scenarios. Apart from tinkering with gadgets or building hackintosh, I like to hop on various subreddits and forums like MyDigitalLife and XDA.

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