In this modern digital age, people have been given access to a vast amount of information on different devices. With people’s increasing reliance on smart devices, and device usage and cost of maintenance surging, it’s no surprise that technology does not only bring convenience but is also causing anxiety. The overflow of information is drowning out people’s capacity to reflect and also forces them to live with the fear of missing out.
What’s more, social instability, the deterioration of the natural environment, and the recent global pandemic have forced all of us to adapt and evolve to the ever-changing external conditions and to also thrive in an uncertain feature. OPPO designers, a spearhead to the future, have been tasked to critically tackle uncertainties to reassess their potential to thrive and to make contributions to the world.
ColorOS is an efficient, highly-customized, intelligent, and well-designed Android-based UI, which has over 500 million active users globally. In its latest version, OPPO aims to adapt to people’s needs by constantly looking at the interactions between devices and their users, as well as grasping the spiritual relationship between nature and humans.
OPPO ColorOS gives users the convenience, the right solutions, and the naturalness of integration between tech and humans, thus reaching an impeccable synthesis of modernistic aesthetics with innovative technology.
ColorOS welcomed a new chapter in its history with the introduction of ColorOS 13 in August 2022. It introduced a new, human-oriented Aquamorphic Design, which aims to provide popular aesthetics with the help of its organic and minimalistic interpretation, with a goal to solve users’ everyday problems in this era of information.
With ColorOS 13, OPPO wants to encourage users to live a gratifying and vibrant lifestyle and look forward to uncertainties with optimism, determinism, and courage.
Aquamorphic Design: Echoing the modern aesthetics
Water and nature breeds are the essence of life on earth. Thanks to the exploration and expression of the laws of nature, OPPO weaved its vitality into technology with the new Auqamorphic Design on ColorOS 13.
OPPO said that it took over half a year for more than 100 engineers to perfect the Aquamorphic Design — a concept that aims to provide ColorOS 13 unlimited possibilities by allowing it to adapt itself to any environment. Such a concept took inspiration from the compactness, multifariousness, and openness to interactions of water and its physical flexibility — from its ubiquitous vapor form to its tough, sharp, ice-like rigidity.
Just like water, ColorOS 13 also represents OPPO’s strive for innovation, adaptation to changes, and intrinsic simplicity. With the new ColorOS version, the company aims to sense and adapt to different technology and user habits, and redefine the relationship between humans and the digital world — all without the user having to spend extra effort to learn. ColorOS can silently and gently assist users with a personal, accommodating, and intuitive experience.
To help aid the people’s fatigue caused by the pandemic, OPPO had to completely overhaul the visual elements of ColorOS.
The color theme of the new ColorOS 13 is inspired by the hue transition of the sky between the sapphire color of the sunrise to the orange sunset. This new color gradient is seen throughout the system space and icons to bring users a sense of vitality and inclusiveness.
This evolving color scheme is anchored around a central blue shade, which is not only in line with the OS’s aqueous theme but also exudes a feeling of serenity and reliability. Likewise, the icons, cards, windows, and input boxes across ColorOS 13 feature more rounded and gentle contours to mirror the flow of water while also symbolizing the endless vitality of life.
Meanwhile, ColorOS 12’s OPPO Sans font, which won a Red Dot Design Award, has also gotten an update on ColorOS 13. The font now has slightly wider text for a more stable look, and the layout was redesigned to look more clear, readable, and more comfortable to the eyes even on different screen sizes.
It’s part of OPPO’s DNA to create a systematic and convenient user experience in an information system that’s often in shambles. OPPO came up with a solution to avoid information overload: Card-Style Layout. It can classify and integrate scattered information to make them more cleaner and presentable, while still highlighting important information and re-arranging the layout to make them easier to read.
With this new design, users can quickly get a hold of the most important information with the least amount of effort — without seeing all the magic happening in the background. Much like how the gentle and inconspicuous look of water in nature: important yet peaceful.
While refining the Control Center, OPPO also grouped and classified each control for a Card-Style layout for a clearer hierarchy, amplify the most-used buttons, and group similar information into one accessible place.
ColorOS 13’s soft Aquamorphic Effect makes every interaction feel natural and seamless, while also giving a soothing sensation that will bring users closer to nature.
For one, fingerprint unlocking and optimization features come with an animated ripple effect. During charging, water droplets are converging in the middle of the display. When switching between interfaces, there’s a Gaussian blur effect that creates a realistic visual sensation of looking at the bottom of the lake, with the background image looking faintly below.
On top of these new design touches, the new Shadow Reflective Clock mirrors the transitions of the sun days from dawn to dusk, and then the shadows cast by the moonlight. These automatic light and shadow shifts match the current time of the day — giving a vivid reminder of the beauty in the passage of life.
The new ColorOS 13 comes with an upgraded Quantum Animation Engine with better animation and simulations of mechanical trajectory movements and the stationary state of virtual objects. This will make the animation look and feel more realistic and in line with the natural world — blurring the line between the digital world and reality.
OPPO also included Behavioral Predictions for more accurate, intelligent, and faster visual responses. For example, if the user exits an app by sliding up and abort a previous instruction to open the app, the system will respond instantly by terminating the previous opening instruction and proceed directly to the real-time aborting response.
New functions to meet the needs of today
The recent global pandemic has entirely changed the way how we live our lives, forcing us to work remotely, which requires using multiple devices simultaneously. As a result, it created a new demand for user experience. Thus, OPPO has updated the ColorOS 13 with a series of intelligent functions for daily needs to cater to the evolved demands of the users.
As more devices come into our lives, a demand for a reliable central operating system that will work on a variety of hardware is vital for users to get the most out of their tech. If you’re simultaneously working on a smartphone, tablet, or computer, the upgraded Multi-Screen Connect on ColorOS 13 improves your multitasking experience by allowing you to switch between devices more seamlessly and naturally, thus increasing efficiency.
Meanwhile, the new Adaptive Layouts make sure that users can still enjoy familiar and consistent experiences on different devices no matter their sizes without having to familiarize things. The new ColorOS version also inherits its predecessor’s Red Dot Award-winning Two-Finger Split Screen function that offers better flexibility and efficiency when multitasking on bigger displays.
Now that they have addressed the universal and core needs of a lot of users, OPPO also designed ColorOS 13 to give a more customized and personalized experience. Users have the option from a variety of design elements and color themes to fit their preferences, use Home Screen Widgets that suit their habits, and play with the UI to show information that fits their needs.
The ColorOS 13’s Always-On Display (AOD) was also designed to showcase important information while also acting as a buffer to not distract users from unnecessary notifications. This allows users to stay focused on things that are more important to them. There’s also the Smart AOD where users can instantly track food delivery statuses without having to touch the device.
OPPO also teamed up with Spotify for convenient music control right within AOD. Users are also given an option to further customize AOD. The company even worked with Bitmoji to bring it to their AOD, which will allow users to create personalized avatars that resemble their own facial features and expressions and use them as AOD wallpapers.
Striking balance between digital life and reality thanks to “Virtuous Innovation” for digital wellbeing
OPPO wants to promote and spread positivity with ColorOS 13. One big example is the Blossom Wallper, which was created to help users find a better balance in their digital well-being. It shows an animated plant, which will go rotten gradually if users continue using their phones for an unhealthy amount of time or when they exceed the user-set limit.
The new ColorOS 13 also has a new Insight AOD that shows a color bar that visualizes the phone use for the last 24 hours. A mark on the bar will show every time the device is unlocked. This non-invasive reminder is a simple yet effective way to remind users to find a better life balance.
In a bid to improve awareness of environmental protection, the new ColorOS 13 also has new Homeland AOD wallpapers that show images of penguins, clownfish, and polar bears in their natural habitats. These wallpapers remind the users of the bad effects of global warming affects other beings on Earth.
Looking back to its evolution, the new Aquamorphic Design of ColorOS 13 remains in line with its signature characteristics, even from its early days. From ColorOS 7, OPPO has repositioned the UI to give importance to providing a smooth and delightful user experience through the use of its simpler Infinite Design Concept. With that as the base, ColorOS 11 was able to take the personal expression to a new level, with a focus on better user customization without having to sacrifice smoothness and usability.
With ColorOS 12, OPPO launched its Inclusive Design Language that combines both personalization and simplicity to a more unified and comfortable interface. It came with Omoji, 3D icons, and Quantum Animation Engine. In fact, it was so good ColorOS 12 got four Red Dot Design Awards in 2022.
Building such an ideal operating system is not easy. Thanks to all the experiences OPPO accumulated over the years from multiple iterations of designs and features, OPPO was able to create the Aquamorphic Design for the ColorOS 13. By giving users a more natural and intuitive experience, OPPO hopes to build a harmonious environment with ColorOS 13, while also appreciating the vitality of life no matter what the future has in store.