What Android version is Oreo?

What is Android Oreo?

Android Oreo, also known as Android 8.0, is the 8th major release and 15th version of the Android mobile operating system. It was first released on August 21, 2017 for Google’s Pixel and Nexus devices, as well as the OnePlus 5. [1] Oreo follows Android Nougat, which was released in 2016. The Android version number for Oreo is 8.0.

The official name for Android 8.0 was revealed on August 21, 2017 as Android Oreo. The Oreo name follows Google’s tradition of naming each Android version after a dessert or sweet treat, such as Ice Cream Sandwich and Jelly Bean. The Oreo name refers to the famous Oreo sandwich cookie made by Nabisco. [2]

Major New Features in Android Oreo

Android Oreo introduced several significant new features and enhancements to the user experience. Some of the most notable updates include:

Picture-in-Picture Mode

Android Oreo brings native support for picture-in-picture mode, allowing users to continue watching videos or using apps in a small overlay window while multi-tasking or using other apps (https://www.cnet.com/pictures/android-oreo-best-new-features/). This feature makes it easy to keep an eye on a video chat or streaming content while performing other tasks.

Notification Dots

Oreo introduces notification dots – small circles that appear on app icons to indicate a new or unread notification. Users can press and hold the icon to preview the notifications (https://www.greenbot.com/android-8-oreo-features/). This provides a quick, convenient way to check updates without opening the full notification tray.


The autofill framework in Android Oreo enables seamless autofill of logins, passwords, and credit card information in apps and browsers. This uses credential stores managed by Google to automatically populate forms for users.

Background Execution Limits

To improve battery life and optimize performance, Oreo places stricter limits on what apps can do in the background when not in active use. These changes prevent unnecessary drain on system resources from inactive apps.

User Interface Changes

Android Oreo introduced several user interface changes and enhancements across the system UI, settings, quick settings panel, and notification panel.

The system UI adopted a new color scheme with bright white and grays instead of the previous blue. Icons were changed to a flatter, rounded rectangle style. The Quick Settings panel was also revamped with a new customizable layout, allowing users to add or remove tiles. Notification banners became smaller and condensed into a single card per app. The Settings app was redesigned with a white background and new sub-category headings.

Some of the most notable UI changes in Android Oreo, according to Android Developers, include:

  • Revamped notification panels and notifications
  • Redesigned Quick Settings panel with customizable tiles
  • New Settings app visual refresh
  • System UI and iconography changes

Overall, the UI changes in Android Oreo focused on consistency, customization, and visually decluttering the interface while enhancing notifications. The changes aimed to improve usability and provide a cleaner look aligned with Google’s Material Design guidelines.

Performance Improvements

Android Oreo introduced several performance improvements to make devices faster and more responsive. One of the biggest changes was limiting background activity to improve overall system speed and stability. As noted on the Android developer site, Android 8.0 Oreo restricts apps running in the background to specific exceptions, such as foreground services, to “improve device performance.” This results in fewer random slowdowns and lag caused by too many background processes.

In testing on aging devices, reviewers found that the performance optimizations in Android Oreo provided noticeable speed boosts. As reported by Fast Company, “On my Nexus 5X, the OS update has given new life to a phone that was previously laggy, froze frequently, and would often run out of memory.” The stability improvements meant fewer app crashes and smoother overall performance.

There are also some user-facing optimizations that can further improve speed. As noted by Tom’s Guide, enabling Data Saver and limiting background data can minimize data usage and speed up loading. Overall, the under-the-hood improvements to background management and stability directly enhance real-world device performance.

Security Enhancements

Android Oreo introduced several new security enhancements, including:

Google Play Protect – This feature provides constant scanning for potentially harmful apps from the Google Play store. It performs automatic scans on over 50 billion apps per day, analyzing behavior to detect any malicious activity [1].

Verified boot – Android Oreo improves upon the existing verified boot feature, which checks the integrity of the device software at startup. In Oreo, verified boot has been enhanced to protect against rollbacks, preventing attackers from installing older, vulnerable versions of software [2].

Other security enhancements include better encryption for Android Instant Apps, protections against overlay attacks, and native support for two-factor authentication keys [3].


Android Oreo was released in August 2017 alongside the Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones. Since then, it has been made available as an upgrade for a wide range of devices. Here is a look at the compatibility and upgrade availability for Android Oreo:

Google’s own Pixel and Nexus devices were among the first to be upgraded to Android 8.0 Oreo. This included the Pixel, Pixel XL, Pixel 2, and Pixel 2 XL. Other flagship devices from Samsung, Sony, HTC, LG, Motorola, Nokia, and more were also upgraded to Oreo in late 2017 or early 2018.

Mid-range and budget devices saw a bit more of a delayed release, with many not getting Oreo until mid-2018 or later. Popular devices that were eventually upgraded include the Samsung Galaxy S8, Galaxy Note 8, Sony Xperia XZ Premium, and many Motorola models like the Moto Z2 Force (1).

While Android Oreo is now several versions old, it still maintains a significant userbase. As of May 2021, Android 8.0 and 8.1 Oreo combine for over 15% market share among active Android devices (2).


Android Oreo received mostly positive reviews from technology publications and users upon release. According to PCMag, Android 8.0 offers “fine-grain notification controls, picture-in-picture mode, autofill for apps, smart icons, new emoji, and improved security features.”

Ars Technica praised Oreo’s improvements to battery life and performance consistency in their review, writing “App background processing has been reined in, hopefully providing better battery life and more consistent performance.”

Many Android users posting in forums and on social media reported faster performance and improved battery life after updating to Oreo. However, some users experienced issues after upgrading like decreased stability, app crashes, and reduced battery life.

Comparison to Nougat

Android Oreo brought several notable changes and improvements compared to its predecessor, Android Nougat 7.0 and 7.1.

Some of the key differences between the two versions include:

Unlike Nougat, Oreo allows users to snooze notifications. While swiping away a notification, the user has option to set timer for when the notification reappears.

Oreo has faster boot times than Nougat due to speed improvements in Android Runtime.

Background limits were introduced in Oreo to restrict background activity and improve battery life.

Notification channels and dots were added in Oreo for better notification control and management.

Oreo brought Picture-in-Picture mode, allowing users to pin a video and use other apps simultaneously.

Autofill API was introduced in Oreo to allow password managers to integrate with Android.

There were also under-the-hood improvements to security, accessibility and performance in Oreo.

Comparison to Newer Versions

Android 8.0 Oreo was released in 2017 as a successor to Android 7.1 Nougat, and has since been replaced by newer Android versions. When compared to more recent Android releases like Android 9.0 Pie and Android 10, Oreo shows some key differences in features and performance.

Android 9.0 Pie introduced improvements to battery life, notifications, and digital wellbeing tools over Oreo. Pie also enabled gesture navigation and included AI-powered features like Adaptive Brightness and Adaptive Battery (source). In comparison, Oreo did not have these more advanced AI capabilities.

Android 10 built upon Pie by adding enhanced privacy controls, improved Digital Wellbeing, and additional Assistant features. Android 10 also allowed users to enable dark mode system-wide and introduced Live Caption for media. Compared to Oreo, Android 10 represented a more substantial leap forward with bigger upgrades like enhanced gesture navigation and the introduction of 5G network support (source).

While Oreo introduced useful new features at the time like picture-in-picture, notification channels, and autofill, its capabilities look modest compared to the major changes and AI advancements introduced in newer versions like Pie and Android 10.


In summary, Android 8.0 Oreo is an incremental yet impactful Android release that introduced numerous enhancements and refinements over its predecessor Nougat. Key highlights of Oreo include a revamped UI with new notification badges, picture-in-picture mode for multitasking, battery life optimizations through background limits, faster boot times, and strengthened security protections like Google Play Protect. While not as transformative as some past releases, Oreo brings meaningful improvements across core user experiences like performance, visuals, and productivity. With thoughtful touches like notification channels and smarter text selection, Oreo reflects Google’s continued efforts to polish the Android platform. For most users, Oreo provided a faster, smoother, more secure and customizable Android experience.

Overall, Android Oreo serves as a worthwhile update for eligible devices. While newer Android releases like Pie and Android 10 have since arrived and brought their own changes, Oreo remains a robust, full-featured version of Android that still powers many devices today. Its combination of UI freshness, productivity enhancements, and under-the-hood improvements make it a solid Android release that set the stage for subsequent versions to build upon.

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