In the Android world, it is rare to see devices being updated with new Android software versions beyond two years. Huawei has a mixed track record with Android version updates. The company has committed to releasing Android Oreo for its older flagship smartphones, but the speed of updates has been slow for international variants.
Then, there is the saga of the Honor 8. We still don’t know for sure whether the device will ever receive Android 8.0 Oreo, because of the conflicting information given by Honor (which is a subsidiary of Huawei).
However, Huawei P9 and P9 Plus owners now have something to look forward to. The Huawei P9 and the P9 Plus are 2016 flagship smartphones. They were launched in April 2016, before the release of the Honor 8. The P9 and the P9 Plus have a high-end list of specifications, including the HiSilicon Kirin 955 system-on-chip, 3GB/4GB of RAM paired with 32GB/64GB of storage, and dual 12MP + 12MP RGB + monochrome rear cameras. The P9 has a 5.2-inch Full HD IPS display while the P9 Plus has a 5.5-inch Full HD Super AMOLED display. The P9 has a 3000mAh battery, while the P9 Plus has stereo speakers and a 3400mAh battery.
The phones shipped with EMUI 4.1 on top of Android Marshmallow and were later updated to Android Nougat. At the beginning of this year, Huawei released a list of devices that will get updated to EMUI 8.0, and the Huawei P9 and the P9 Plus were both included.
Now, a Product Manager from Huawei has confirmed the update on Huawei’s official forum. The update will bring Android 8.0 Oreo, and it’s likely to be the last major update the phones will receive in their lifetime.
At this point, details about the update aren’t known. We don’t know if the update will include all the EMUI 8.0 features that have been rolled-out to older Huawei devices, or whether some features will be missing. It’s also unknown whether the update will feature Project Treble support.
Regardless, it’s still great to see that Huawei is planning to update its two-year-old flagship smartphones. EMUI 8.0 should bring performance improvements to the P9 and the P9 Plus. Standard Android Oreo features such as notification channels, smart text selection, notification dots, picture-in-picture mode, and more will also be welcome to see.