With rumors of the official One UI 5 beta starting soon and internal previews are already in progress, people get excited to see what Samsung has up its sleeve for Android 13. Fortunately, I have managed to get my hands on the latest One UI 5 beta before the public beta even begins. Let’s take a look at everything new in One UI 5.
To give some context, this design was provided by a source and is not one that Samsung has released publicly, so it may not provide a complete picture of the One UI 5 given the original character. It is an early beta that unfortunately does not have a change log, so everything new below has been from using One UI 5 and comparing with One UI 4.
Tweaked notification design
The notification design has been slightly adjusted between One UI 4 and One UI 5. There are new notification icons along with an updated design style. The notification screen and quick settings also have a small adjustment of the opacity. None of these changes are large, but they give an overall different feel to the message nuance as a whole when used.
Stock Android state dialogs
A big surprise with One UI 5 is Samsung’s choice to use the standard Android mode dialogs. This is by no means a bad thing, and it’s very similar to how Google does it. This may have been to speed up the update process by not changing things that do not need to be changed in Android, or it may just be so early that Samsung has not had time to change it in One UI 5 yet. We will find out soon enough in future beta versions.
OCR in Gallery and insert text from image on keyboard
Samsung has now added OCR (Optical Character Recognition) which allows you to copy text from images to the Gallery app and keyboard. When the device detects text in a photo, it will now have a button at the bottom of the gallery that allows you to retrieve text from the image. This used to be part of Bixby Vision, but turned into a separate feature in One UI 5.
Keyboard OCR works the same way it does on iOS. In any text field, you can choose to extract text and hold the camera against anything to take text from it and insert it. The user interface on Samsung’s version is also incredibly similar to iOS.
Security and privacy hub
The security and privacy hub is a proprietary Samsung version of what Google created for Pixel on Android 13. It places all your accounts, passwords, security and privacy features on one screen, providing easy access to everything. It will also search for anything that may abuse app permissions or a security setting that is not enabled and recommends that you enable it for better security.
Unfortunately, there is nothing new in the hub. All the settings and features here were also in One UI 4, but it’s good to see Samsung make access to all this easier and be proactive when it comes to warning those who are less technically savvy.
New multitasking gestures
In Labs, there are now two options for multitasking and access to the function. You will now be able to swipe up from the bottom of the screen with two fingers to access the split view or swipe in from the upper right corner to create a pop-up window. None of them currently work in this version, but they should do so when it launches.
- Collaboration in Samsung Notes
- Currently active app in quick settings
- About the side of the phone now shows the image of the device
- UWB toggles between settings
In the end, there really isn’t much new in One UI 5. It has small improvements across the board with an upgrade to animations. This is not a bad thing. It seems that Samsung is focusing on update speed, as the beta version will probably start a month earlier with a planned release also a month earlier.
Focusing on getting Android updates quickly and then bringing newer features with later updates that are launched along with new devices allows more devices to get updates and for Samsung to focus on new features later. With promises of four years of Olympic updates, this is a good thing to see and a good start for the Galaxy S22s. We have to see how it goes for Samsung’s Z-folding, A-line phones and the Tab series of devices.
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