Thursday, January 9, 2014

CyanogenMod is attaining new heights in the Android arena


CyanogenMod recently passed 10 million installs and raised $30 million in funding. As a result, we should see more apps from CyanogenMod and to see Android devices running CyanogenMod out of the box. Their success will help shape the future of Android.

What is CyanogenMod?

If you are unfamiliar with CyanogenMod, they create the most popular ROMs for Android devices. These ROMs replace a smartphone's stock firmware, giving users absolute access to their phones. This can potentially make phones faster or more enjoyable to use.

One particularly nice thing about CyanogenMod over other ROM communities, is that their ROMs are easy to install. At one point, CyanogenMod was on Google Play. This may be partially responsible for their recent success.

CyanogenMod is becoming increasingly well-known

Out of the 1 billion activations of Android devices, over 10 million of these devices have CyanogenMod's ROMs installed on them. Samsung's Galaxy S, Galaxy S II, and Galaxy S III are the devices most commonly modded with CyanogenMod. This figure of 10 million includes only phones that are currently running CyanogenMod. If a phone does not check in within 90 days, it is removed from CyanogenMod's database.

That being said, this figure is impressive, especially given that modding phones is not an easy or common task. Many users are satisfied with their Android devices running stock firmware. However, the number of users running CyanogenMod on their devices indicates that a significant amount of Android users are becoming fed up with stock firmware, which often times is bloated with features or apps that users do not want and cannot remove.

CyanogenMod's recent funding success

The 10-million install mark was really just the cherry on top for CyanogenMod this year. They have also raised around $30 dollars in funding and are looking to hire staff immediately. They hope to go from 25 staff members to 85 or more in the next year. Clearly, this is very exciting news for CyanogenMod.

In a blog post, Steve Kondik, the CTO of Cyanogen Inc, outlined what this funding would be used for. Importantly, Kondik has ensured that CyanogenMod will remain open source, which is good news for its developers. Cyanogen Inc will expand their engineering, UX, design, and product teams. Users will begin to see more CyanogenMod apps, features, and services more often. Furthermore, devices will be developed that run CyanogenMod out of the box.

This is great for the average smartphone user who does not know how to mod phones but who would benefit from CyanogenMod's firmware.

If Cyanogen devices become popular, smartphone manufacturers will have to make their stock firmware competitive with CyanogenMod if they do not wish to include CyanogenMod on their devices. Hopefully, this means that we will see less bloatware and have more control over our devices.

Overall, CyanogenMod's success is well received in the Android development community and we should see great things from them soon.


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