The OnePlus 8 Pro was launched recently, and one of the headlining aspects of the new “flagship killer” has been the 120Hz high refresh rate display. However, all the talk in the town has been about the camera setup on the OnePlus 8 Pro—specifically, the 5MP Color Filter camera and the Photochrom mode.
Users have since discovered that the mode, originally intended to enable “creative” mobile photography, actually has X-ray-like functionality. This expectedly led to some considerable controversy, with the sensor allowing users to see through certain materials such as thin clothing and plastics.
The company moved quickly to issue an official apology on its Weibo page, assuring users that the mode will be temporarily disabled on HydrogenOS (OnePlus’ skin for China devices). However, users have reported that the Color Filter camera has been disabled on their devices running OxygenOS—global units of the OnePlus 8 Pro.
Global units are also affected
The global update (10.5.9.IN11AA) for the OnePlus 8 Pro removes the Photochrom filter—even on non-China units. This was apparently a mistake on OnePlus’ part, and the update only affects a limited number of smartphones for now.
“Hi otto, my apologies for any confusion, but this OTA inadvertently went out to a limited number of devices. We will re-enable that filter in the next OTA.”– OnePlus forums
Instead, the filter will be re-enabled during the next OTA update. It’s still unclear how OnePlus plans to limit the offending functionality of the Color Filter camera and Photochrom mode at this moment in time.
It appears that the Color Filter camera and Photochrom mode work by using infrared light. This type of technology certainly has its uses, such as for emergency services like firefighters—although it hasn’t really been widely available on mobile, consumer-centric devices like smartphones.
Meanwhile, a statement on the official company forum explained that a future update will bring back the Photochrom filter, without the “functionality that may be of concern”. According to David Y, a staff member at OnePlus:
“We decided to temporarily disable this filter on HydrogenOS out of an abundance of caution about some false and misleading information circulating on social media in China. However, we do not plan to disable this filter on OxygenOS, our global operating system, so we can focus on bringing the OTA to you as quickly as possible.
Do you have a OnePlus 8 Pro? Let us know if the update affected your device. For what it’s worth, the single OnePlus 8 Pro that we have in the SoyaCincau office still has Photochrom mode enabled for now.
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Editor’s note: This article has been amended for clarity.