The 2016 Asus ZenFone 3 Max is getting a nice surprise for owners starting today. The company has pushed out the Android Oreo 8.1 update to the phone along with the new ZenUI 5.0 update to the phone. The updated firmware is version 15.0200.1807.406 for those keeping score at home.
The update can be checked for on our ZenFone 3 Max by going to Settings>About>System Update. Given that it has just been released, it make take a few days to get to everyone so patience is the key.
Unlike other phones in the ZenFone 3 lineup, the Asus ZenFone 3 Max never was updated to Android Oreo 8.0. While it was never made clear why, it seems that the company decided to skip it. It is also unclear on if other ZenFone 3 devices that did get the Oreo 8.0 update will be updated to 8.1.
The release notes for this update were short so it is not clear on which month of the Android Security Update that the ZenFone 3 Max is receiving as part of this update. If you have one of these phones and get the update, drop me a line and let me know so I can update the article (full credit to you of course). That said, the more stock Android look of ZenUI 5.0 will be pleasing for users as it gets rid of a lot of the clutter of previous versions of the Asus UI experience.