OnePlus 3T is the company’s rockstar from the year 2016. The OnePlus 3T came running on Android Marshmallow out of the box. Back then, there was nothing called “Project Treble”. Later in 2017, Google announced the Project Treble with the Android Oreo. Google made it mandatory for all the Android device launching on Android Oreo to support the Project Treble.
Since the OnePlus 3T was not an Android Oreo powered phone out of the box, the only way it could get the Treble Support was through a software update by OnePlus. Unfortunately, OnePlus did not add Treble Support to the OnePlus 3T even with the Oreo update. The only way to get Project Treble on OnePlus 3T was through a custom method. So now, we have a custom method that can enable Project Treble on OnePlus 3T. Before getting the Treble on OnePlus 3T, let’s learn each and everything about Project Treble and how it can improve a phone.
Project Treble is Google’s effort to make Android updates faster. Before Project Treble, it used to take a lot of time for the Android manufacturers to roll out the updates for their phones. Most of the phones left out of the support for the newer version of Android. Only 1% of Android devices support the Android Nougat. On the other hand, Apple tries its best to update its years’ old phones to the latest version of Android. This is the major downside of the Android OS as compared to the iOS. Google wanted to tackle this issue and introduced Project Treble to do so.
Project Treble separates the Android Framework from the Hardware Abstraction Layers. This makes an Android device independent of vendor updates. For example, if OnePlus wants to update the phone to a newer version of Android, it can simply update the phone without waiting for the software tweak from vendor i.e. Qualcomm for the Snapdragon SoC. Previously, a software update had to undergo modification from the vendor, carriers and other parties involved in certifications for a particular phone. You can read all about the Project Treble here.
Project Treble on OnePlus 3T
The Project Treble on the OnePlus 3T can be enabled through a build of LineageOS. This method will not enable the Treble officially on the phone. The Project Treble we are about to enable will only make your phone ready to flash any AOSP Android GSI build. For example, there is a new Android Pie GSI available that can be flashed on all the Treble supported phones. Furthermore, there is LineageOS and Resurrection Remix build that can be installed on all the Project Treble supported phones. This firmware comes in only one file that can be flashed in a variety of smartphones. All of that is possible because the Android OS works separately from the HALs now.
Since the HALs are moved to their own partition now which is called the vendor partition, the idea of installing Treble on OnePlus 3T is to add this vendor partition. By default, there is no vendor partition on the OnePlus 3T. Flashing the custom LineageOS given here will add that partition to the phone.
To install any such firmware on the OnePlus 3T, you can Treblize it. Follow the steps given here to enable Treble on your phone right now.
Enable Project Treble on OnePlus 3T
While there are many advantages of flashing this custom OS for Treble, there are some downsides as well. For example, the camera doesn’t work on the GSIs. That is because OnePlus hasn’t rolled out the update for Camera HALs for the OnePlus 3T. The Android Pie GSI also has the Camera and VoLTE broken on the OnePlus 3T. If these two are something that you can bear, you may flash the GSI, otherwise, stick to the ROM that we are about to install.
- This guide is only for the OnePlus 3T. Do not try this on any other phone.
- Charge your phone up to 50% to avoid power loss during the installation procedure.
- Backup each and everything from your phone as this process will wipe it.
- Use OEM data cable to connect your phone to the computer when needed.
- This method requires an unlocked bootloader.
- Follow rest of the instructions carefully.
- Modified TWRP recovery: recovery.img | Install this custom recovery by following the steps given in this guide.
- Treble-enabled LOS: lineage-15.1-20180828-UNOFFICIAL-oneplus3.zip
- Copy the LineageOS.zip file to your phone’s internal storage.
Steps to enable Treble on OP3T
- Make sure that you have flashed the TWRP recovery linked above.
- Now turn off your OnePlus 3T.
- Press and hold Volume Down + Power button. As soon as the phone boots up, let the power key go and keep the Volume Down key pressed. Your phone will now boot into the TWRP recovery.
- In the TWRP recovery, click on Advanced > Terminal.
- Now in the Terminal, write: treblize
- Press the tick button appearing on the bottom right in the TWRP now.
- This will add the vendor partition to your OnePlus 3T.
- Reboot your OnePlus 3T into the system now. Check if everything works fine or not.
- If everything is working fine, reboot the OnePlus 3T into the TWRP recovery again.
- This time, click on Install > Install Zip > Locate the LineageOS.zip file and flash it.
- Reboot the phone into the system again.
- You have the Treblized LineageOS running now. You can flash any other Android GSI now.
The OnePlus 3T is an old device. There is a potential chance that something will go wrong during the process. It can take several attempts to make this process successful. If, at some point, anything goes wrong with the phone, follow this guide to unbrick OnePlus 3T. If you have any queries, feel free to reach out to me through the comments section below.