Apparently, the OnePlus 6 was supposed to feature an always-on display, but the company disabled it at the last minute because of concerns over the battery.
As pointed out by Reddit users, the phone shipped with the option present in the software, but it was inactive. Then, following the launch day update, it was completely removed from the system settings, seemingly implying that it will never be enabled anytime soon.
Always-On display Disabled On OnePlus 6
For the uninitiated, an always-on display is a common feature among smartphones, particularly those with OLED displays, where the display doesn't turn off entirely but instead shows various information including date and time, battery charge, and notifications, so the user doesn't have to turn the device on if they just want to see, say, if they've received a message.
While not impossible to implement on LCDs, it's more efficient to use with OLED panels since this type of display doesn't require a backlight — the "lit up" pixels are the only ones using energy, not the entire screen. It appears that even on OLED panels, it can cause noticeably worse battery life, so that's probably why OnePlus turned it off.
Asked if they indeed removed the feature, OnePlus had this to say:
"We have an official update from our Technical Team confirming that always on display on OnePlus 6 was removed due to battery saving concern."
From its statement, it's not clear whether OnePlus disabled the feature because it wanted to save battery life, or the always-on display mode had a bug that was causing significant battery drain. Either way, it's a shame to see it go.
Luckily for users, there's an alternative to the always-on display feature: Android's "Ambient display" mode, which triggers on when lifting the phone up or receiving notifications. It's not as dynamic and efficient, but it's better than nothing. To turn it on, go to Settings, tap Display, then choose Ambient Display.
The OnePlus 6 is the company's latest flagship, following 2017's OnePlus 5T. It's got a 6.28-inch AMOLED display with a 2,280 x 1,080 resolution and a ratio of 19:9. Under the hood is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor, up to 8 GB of RAM, and up to 256 GB of onboard storage. On the back are dual cameras — one's a 16-megapixel shooter with an f/1.7 aperture, and the other is a 20-megapixel sensor with a similar aperture that can shoot 2160p video. On the front is a 16-megapixel selfie camera.
Would you have liked an always-on display mode on your OnePlus 6? As always, feel free to sound off in the comments section below!