Galaxy S9 received an upgrade to Android 9 Pie last month
Easier to manage with one hand
When it introduced One UI, Samsung emphasised the software had been designed from the ground-up to make navigating on larger devices with one hand easier.
The firm said: “One UI helps you focus on what really matters to you.
“With hardware and software working together in harmony, see only what you need, using and viewing your phone with an experience that feels second nature. Because it’s the small details that make a big difference.”
During our testing of the new software on a Galaxy S9+ device, Express.co.uk can confirm using Samsung’s native applications are easier with one hand.
Messages, Clock and Gallery are just some of the apps that have been altered so the majority of their contents is placed in the middle and bottom of the display.
While this means when you open Messages for instance, the top of the display is initially left with blank space, once the user scrolls up to see older conversations such a gap is filled with more recent chats.
The ease of use offered by One UI in native applications is of the reasons we have opted to start using Samsung’s own experiences over those from Google.
It is not just Samsung apps that are now easier to use with one hand, if the user pulls the notification shade completely down, its contents similarly fills the screen so the user does not have to stretch to reach certain functions.
One of the biggest caveats to Samsung’s new design choice is that it has not transcended into all the firm’s programmes.
Samsung Notes for instance has not been changed and does not comply with the claimed system-wide dark mode offered by One UI in our testing.
The notification shade for One UI fills the entire display
One of One UI’s best features is its dark mode
One UI allows Samsung fans to control their device using gestures, however it is worth noting they are not the same as those offered by Google on its Pixel 3 handset.
Instead, swiping up where the traditional Android buttons at the bottom used to be performs each respective function.
That means if the user has their back button on the bottom left-hand side of the navigation bar, once they turn on gestures a swipe up on the left-hand side of the device will similarly go back.
Gesture navigations can be switched on by heading to settings > display > navigation bar.
One UI allows Samsung fans to control their device using gestures
Arguably the biggest change to arrive with One UI and Android 9 Pie on Samsung devices is the new aesthetic it presents users with.
Most of the South Korean OEM’s apps have been given a new icon and interface.
The icons themselves appear to be more cartoon-like than what existed before and is certainly a welcome change.
However, it is worth noting not all of Samsung’s programmes have been altered, meaning there is a somewhat lack of uniformity across the OS.
Samsung Notes retains its old icon for instance and looks especially disappointing next to the overhauled ones.
One UI presents Galaxy S9 owners with a visual overhaul
One UI brings a host of subtle design tweaks for Samsung fans
One UI comes with a dark mode that can be enabled by heading to settings > display and then ensuring the “night mode” toggle is on.
Once the darker theme is enabled, native Samsung apps such as Messages will also flaunt such an aesthetic.
Google has previously claimed dark modes have the ability to increase device battery life thanks to their decreased power consumption.
However, during Express.co.uk’s testing of One UI, we have not noticed a huge improvement in our screen-on time.
Most of the South Korean OEM’s apps have been given a new icon and interface
Gallery recycle bin
Samsung’s Gallery app now has a recycle bin feature that will keep deleted photos for 15 days before they are erased permanently.
iOS already has a “recently deleted” feature that preserves items for a month before they are completely removed.
The recycle bin is great in the instance a cherished memory is accidentally deleted
Samsung’s Gallery app now has a recycle bin feature in One UI
Such a feature is great in the instance a cherished memory is accidentally deleted.
Instead, such items can now be recovered with ease.
The Gallery recycle bin feature can be enabled by heading into the app’s settings menu.