The OnePlus 8 Pro has a colour filter lens that when combined with the photochrome filter in the camera app allows the lens and camera to “see through” some structures. When it was discovered by some users OnePlus decided that they would remove it from the Chinese version of their latest ultra-premium flagship, the OnePlus 8 Pro. Unfortunately when they did that they also inadvertently removed it from some non-Chinese versions.
Details from within the camera app of a new update rolling out to the OnePlus 8 Pro suggest that when it releases in India in the next few days the Photochrome mode will be unavailable.
There is a reference to the Indian version of the device, IN2021, and a reference to disabling this infra-red camera: “InfraredCameraBuilder.ModelsToDisableInfraredCamera”. According to XDA Developers the code suggests that when the product model is IN2021, Photochrome is disabled. OF course they tested it out on a rooted OnePlus 8 Pro by changing the model number in the build.prop file and lo and behold the Photochrome mode disappeared from the camera app.
At this stage the OnePlus 8 Pro release into India is still delayed due to COVID-19 with a date for its eventual release still unknown. At this stage the new software will either come pre-loaded onto the device out of the box or a prompt for an OTA for it not long after turning the phone on.
XDA state that the disabling of the camera is only temporary while they work on a “fix” — although what exactly they are fixing we are not sure as the lens sees what it sees and that is the type of lens that it is, sensitive to infrared. The new update to re-enable the x-ray vision is expected to arrive in late June this year.
At this stage a release date for the Indian version of the OnePlus 8 Pro is unknown but we have reached out to OnePlus for any details they may be able to share with us. As for those in Australia and elsewhere with this infrared camera disabled, fear not a fix is coming, although as we stated above we don’t know what the infrared experience the other side of this fix will be. We expect it to no longer have x-ray vision though.