“Ambient Mode effectively turns a smartphone into a smart display when plugged into charging, making it a rather nifty screensaver”
OnePlus has announced earlier today that the Google Assistant-based Ambient Mode on Android is coming soon to its smartphones. The company has already begun rolling out the feature and the update is being phased and should be available to all of its users within a week. The update brings the ability for users to turn their smartphones into smart displays when plugged into charging. Once the mode is activated via Google Assistant settings on the device, users get an Ambient Display Mode that shows up automatically when the phone is locked, which shows information such as the average time to work, details from upcoming calendar entries, and local weather.
Additionally, Ambient Mode also gives the ability to control connected smart home devices directly from the ambient screen. For instance, users can control heating or cooling devices, lights, and any other Google Assistant-based smart home device directly from the home screen, while a shortcut is also generally included to enable Do Not Disturb, which useful for your sleeping times. Ambient Mode also allows users to turn their phones into a digital photo frame, using photos that the Assistant scrolls from your saved libraries. Essentially, what you get is a mini, portable smart home device interface that doubles up as a rather productive screensaver for when your phone is charging.
Beginning this week, Ambient Mode will feature on OnePlus’ phones as well, right from OnePlus 3 to the latest OnePlus 7T Pro. The company has often been hailed for its community-centric approach, wherein it holds Open Ears Forums where its users get to directly interact with company executives. These discussions often include a relay of questions and answers on why certain features are missing on the OxygenOS interface, how OnePlus aims to improve specific features going forward, and altogether new features that the company is slated to launch in future. One of the examples of such was the videography-centric forum hosted by OnePlus, which spoke about key areas of improvement that OnePlus will look at in its future software updates.
As for Ambient Mode, expect it to hit your devices within a week’s time. The same should arrive as a new OxygenOS update, which may or may not bring with itself other elements such as the January security patch issued by Google. Ambient Mode debuted on Nokia phones, following which it was launched on Xiaomi phones as well. With OnePlus joining the party, it will be interesting to see whether the smart Assistant screensaver mode becomes a popular interface.