When Cyanogen announced its services and nightly builds were ending, it said the CyanogenMod open source project would continue on. However, after the latter made a blog post calling the action a "death blow" for CyanogenMod, the DNS routing for its…
The days leading up to the holiday have been a real roller coaster ride for Cyanogen fans. Yesterday, Cyanogen Inc. unceremoniously pulled the plug on its support for CyanogenOS in a short post declaring that “all services and Cyanogen-supported nightly builds will be discontinued” by the year’s end.
In a post today titled “A Fork in the Road,” the team behind… Read More
As most of us are paying attention to our long holiday weekend, Cyanogen Inc. has announced that "all services and Cyanogen-supported nightly builds" will be discontinued by December 31st. While its statement says that the open source CyanogenMod OS…
Cyanogen is abandoning its dreams of becoming the third big mobile platform in favor of rolling out a modular approach to smartphone software customization. The Cyanogen Modular OS program empowers device manufacturers to introduce "intelligent, cust…
Not all smartphones are created equal, but the new OnePlus One (not to be confused with that other One, the HTC One) is roughly equivalent on paper with some of the most expensive smartphones in the world, albeit with a price that puts it much more within reach than most of those. The OnePlus One starts at $299 for a white 16GB version, and will also offer a 64GB variant in black for $349 when it… Read More
Cyanogen Inc., the makers of an alternative Android ROM that last year raised $30 million (in two chunks) in VC funding, from Benchmark Capital and Andreessen Horowitz, to try to turn what has generally been a geek project into something with more mainstream appeal, has named an official hardware partner for its endeavour.
Fittingly enough, this partner, OnePlus, is itself a startup — albeit, one founded by a person with experience of putting CyanogenMod on phones. Namely, former Oppo VP Pete Lau, who had been involved in bringing CyanogenMod to Chinese OEM Oppo’s N1 smartphone.
Lau has clearly decided to take that experience and apply it wholesale, in a new setting — where the effort isn’t an adjunct to business-as-usual Android handsets.
In a blog post announcing the news, OnePlus said: “The CyanogenMod team will work in tandem with us to combine the best hardware with the best software. They are developing a custom version of CyanogenMod with special features and tweaks.”
The first fruit of the partnership is going to be called the rather tongue-twisting OnePlus One. There’s precious little detail at this point about how the phone is going to differ from the N1 running CyanogenMod — not to mention stand out from the more-vanilla-Android crowd. But it doesn’t sound like it’s going to be a mid-range device, with a pledge of “the latest and highest spec hardware” for the OnePlus One.
Other descriptors used are “fast, clean and beautiful”, which is all terribly non-specific so it’s a case of wait and see what the partnership delivers. The biggest trick the pair will have to pull off is making CyanogenMod attractive to a more mainstream user than has generally been the case thus far.
The OnePlus One is due to debut in the first half of this year, with a limited launch in “selected markets” initially, but with the aim of broadening availability down the line.
Recent years saw the birth of many new online brands in China, with Xiaomi being the most notable one with its complete ecosystem on top of aggressive pricing. And at last, it looks like local competitor Oppo wants a share of that pie as well. According to a rumor from just before the weekend, the company’s VP Pete Lau (pictured above) will be developing a new online brand from scratch, and its first product will feature top hardware specs along with CyanogenMod — the same renowned Android ROM that’s headed to Oppo’s flagship N1 and Find 5. More interestingly, Lau has just announced that today’s his last day at Oppo.
Cyanogen Inc. revealed a few months back that it closed a $7 million seed investment from Benchmark Capital. The vision it laid out at the time was no small one: it wants its cooked version of Android to become the third most-used mobile OS behind iOS and Android proper.
Naturally, that involves getting CyanogenMod onto as many devices as it can, and today the company took one giant leap in that direction. They’ve just made it easier for average folks to flash their software onto their smartphones with an installer app available in the Google Play Store.
If that last bit doesn’t sound like a big deal, then chances are you’ve never tried to install CyanogenMod on your own. After all, the original installation process wasn’t exactly for the faint of heart. While some devices could be coaxed into running CyanogenMod in mere moments, others required lengthy lists of instructions and some occasional finger crossing. Hardly an ideal situation for a company trying to get CyanogenMod working on as many devices as possible.
Even now, there are still some caveats to deal with. The Android app won’t do a whole lot all on its own for one, as it requires a companion Windows installer for heavy lifting so Mac users are plum out of luck at the moment. And most notably, the list of supported devices represents just a fraction of the Android gadgets currently floating around out there, so true mass-market penetration is going to take some time.
But let’s back up for a moment: why would someone want to swap their current Android build (whatever it may be) with CyanogenMod? Long story short, the Cyanogen team has been working to build extra features into their custom version of Android by way of very frequent updates. While they’ve been developing CM for a long while, it’s still very early days for Cyanogen as a company. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t making headway. The team inked a partnership with Chinese OEM Oppo to fold CyanogenMod support into its curious N1 smartphone, and with any luck, more manufacturer partnerships are in the cards, too.