Samsung quietly rolled out their Android 13 preview in a small number of countries after we specifically detailed some new features and features in the pre-release One UI 5.0 beta build. Here are all the biggest and most notable additions.
Samsung isn’t known for bringing big changes with One UI, and while the look and feel has been tweaked, it’s hard to tell what’s changed at first glance. In typical Samsung fashion, though, there are tons of feature changes and additions. The Korean company certainly knows how to add features without drastically changing the “core” experience. That said, we’ve already seen some features on Google’s Pixel lineup with the recent Android 13 beta that make One UI 5.0 possible.
Video – One UI 5.0 Beta: Top New Features
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Minor fingerprint animation changes
The in-display fingerprint animation in One UI 5.0 Beta has an incredibly small change from One UI 4.1. Unlike regular outward ripples, when unlocked, the ripple has a faster “swirl” effect that radiates around as the ripple expands. This is most noticeable on lighter wallpapers, but it’s just a cosmetic change.
Improved Material You and Dynamic Color support
One UI doesn’t follow the Material You design guidelines, but it does adopt many of the principles that wallpaper dominates device themes. The first One UI 5.0 Beta brings more tweaks to the wallpapers and styles section, adding more tint options in the color palette section.
The swatch-style picker also incorporates a “Basic Colors” tab, which lets you choose from 8 single-color presets and an additional 4 duotone options (like Pixel phones). Unlike the Pixel, you can also disable the dynamic color/palette feature entirely if you prefer the default system settings. This will make all applications follow standard hues and accents, returning everything to a standard blue.
Google’s Material You-style permission request popup is now also used for One UI with colored buttons and more obvious activation restrictions. This replaces the list-style permission popup in One UI 4.1 and earlier.
The great stackable widgets feature just got even easier in One UI 5.0 beta, as you can create scrollable quick view widgets just by long-pressing on existing widgets on your home screen. In One UI 4.1 and earlier, you needed to create a dedicated “smart widget” that could do similar editing.
You can now also automatically rotate settings widgets in stacks based on your Galaxy screen orientation. Long-pressing, then tapping the “Edit Stack” button opens up more controls to tweak with a toggle that lets you enable auto-rotation of widgets.
Improved mini popup UI
When an incoming call arrives and you’re running the app, you’ll see an updated mini pop-up UI that includes more visual elements and more visible drop-down menus for quick actions. Answer and Decline buttons are now moved to the side without text labels and animated icons.
Quick call log
While on a call, you now have the option to take a quick note by tapping the three-dot menu in the upper right corner. Any notes you make are saved, noting who the caller is, but no details about the time or date it happened. It’s unclear if this is a feature limited to devices that support the S Pen.
Customize incoming call background
Now, for the first time, you can also fully customize the call background image on a contact-by-contact basis using the default Samsung dialer app. You need to head to Contacts, then in the overflow menu in the Edit section, you can choose a video wallpaper from four presets or add your own specific image.
Camera app changes
The Samsung Camera app remains one of the most powerful apps on Android, and the One UI 5.0 Beta brings even more features to an already populated experience. If you want to automatically watermark your images, now you can use the native feature for the first time on a Samsung phone. You can almost fully customize the image watermark with font and layout options – mimicking many Chinese smartphones – and also tag your specific Galaxy model.
Professional Mode Tools
In Camera Pro mode, there are some important usability additions. A histogram feature has been added to help you manage the light distribution in the scene where the camera system is pointed at. A quick icon lets you show it or turn it off from the viewfinder.
Each shot also includes an information panel with some details on which shooting scenes are best suited for the relevant foal length or shot. For newbies, this may help improve their understanding of each shot while encouraging experimentation.
Quick setting changes
New notification layouts and tweaks
Samsung is tweaking the Quick Settings panel in One UI 5.0 Beta to give incoming notifications a more pixel-like layout. The larger, left-most app icon shows where app notifications come from. If you receive multiple notifications from the same app, there will be an icon stack indicating that multiple unread notifications are pending.
When the quick settings panel is fully expanded, the circular M3 button can also be used for more in-depth notification settings and quick clear functions.
Like on the Pixel, there’s an “Active Apps” option, but to access it, you’ll need to tap the kebab menu button in the upper-right corner. This section only shows applications that are running or that use system resources in the background. You can deactivate or stop these applications from the quick popup panel.
A revised version of the classic Over the Horizon ringtone has been added to One UI 5.0 Beta created by BTS member SUGA.
There’s a dedicated “Connected Devices” at the top of the settings menu that lets you quickly manage every external connection you might have on your phone. This includes Samsung DeX, any previously connected earbuds, Link to Windows, and more.
Guest Mode in Accounts and Backups
For whatever reason, One UI removes multi-user mode, which has felt a palpable omission on Samsung phones for a while. One UI 5.0 Beta brings back the Guest Mode feature in Accounts and Backup Settings. This allows you to set up multiple people on one device with unique apps and accounts, making it great for work and personal accounts if you don’t want to use Knox features.
Android 13 Easter Eggs
Samsung has added an Android 13 Easter egg with emojis to the One UI 5.0 Beta, which can be accessed by going to Settings > About phone > Software info > and tapping Android version. Now just set the clock time to 1 o’clock and you’ll see bubble-heavy Easter eggs. A long press will change the bubble to a random emoji. Unlike Pixel phones, Samsung’s emoji style is favored, which gives Easter eggs a slightly weird feel.
Labs adds multitasking gestures
Advanced features section includes popular experimental labs. Samsung usually adds a set of early features, and in the One UI 5.0 Beta, you can activate more multitasking gestures. You can swipe down from the top corner of the app to quickly activate pop-up mode, or swipe up with two fingers from the bottom of the screen to quickly enter split-screen mode. A popup lets you quickly select a second app from the mini app drawer.
Samsung is adding or mimicking the recently added Security Center to Pixel devices. This new panel will notify you of any security concerns and changes you can make to enhance your overall device security. It’s also your one-stop place for all security and privacy-related tweaks on Galaxy devices.
Improved About Phone section
The About Phone section in Settings now previews your device, showing the correct color and model.
Now you can extract text from images and more simply by long-pressing on a photo or text input box with text. The Gallery app even includes a quick-detect “T” icon that, if recognized, can extract text from images. If you’re using the default Samsung keyboard, there’s a new option for “Extract Text,” which will quickly launch the camera to extract text and enter it directly into the text box.
What’s your favorite new One UI 5.0 Beta feature?
Samsung has added a number of quality of life extras that are sure to be helpful and useful to Galaxy owners. What do you think is the best new feature? Let us know in the comments section below.
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