A new way to access OnePlus Shelf includes a swipe down gesture
Now, in it, you can set the OnePlus Launcher to launch the Shelf when you swipe down on the home screen. If you set that gesture, you will no longer be able to swipe down anywhere on the screen to access your notification shade, of course.
For me, personally, that tradeoff is not worth it, as I'm not using the OnePlus Shelf. If you do, however, it may be worth it to you. If you've installed this update, this is how you can set up this gesture.
Hold down your finger on an empty space of your home screen until a bottom menu pops up. There, hit the 'Home Settings' options, and there you'll see 'Swipe down to access' option.
Tap that, and you'll be able to choose between the notification shade and OnePlus Shelf, essentially. It's nice to see that OnePlus is not forcing you to this change, but is giving out options instead.
If you do set OnePlus Shelf to open that way, you will still be able to access your notification shade and quick toggles by swiping from the top of the screen. That makes it less convenient, though, as OnePlus' handsets are quite large.
OnePlus says that with this update, it wants to make this feature more accessible to its users. For those of you who don't know, OnePlus Shelf is basically a screen with many useful, easy-to-access tools.
You can quickly access Notes, Toolbox, Step Counter, and recent contacts. You can pin your apps on the OnePlus Shelf, and more. It's a useful feature, that's for sure.
This update is available for OnePlus 8 series users in the US and Europe, for now
This feature will probably come to the stable build of OnePlus Launcher soon, though. The company did not mention when, but such features don't take long to make the jump.
The OnePlus Launcher is slowly, but surely, getting more and more compelling features. There are a number of additional features requested by the community, though, as people see a lot of potential in OnePlus Launcher.
One of the most requested features is the addition of more customization. For example, this launcher doesn't allow you to set it 7×7 (grids & rows), it's very limited in that regard. So, the space between the icons is always quite substantial. That is just one example, though. We'll see if OnePlus plans to change that in the future.