Remember back when an HP Touchpad was spotted running Android out of the box? Well, it would appear that after some cajoling, the CM team (in association with an attorney) have convinced HP to release the Touchpad's Android kernel source, along with a couple of other GPL components specifically modified for Android-powered Touchpads accidentally released to the wild. In addition to the kernel, HP released code to androidvncserver and i2c-tools. The only thing missing, according to Green (part of the CM team), is the Wi-Fi driver. Green explains this in an announcement on the RootzWiki forums:

I did some digging around and it appears that the wifi driver shipped with both webOS and with the Android are GPL, there are multiple evidences of that including the driver licensing string. Plus the driver is linked against 10+ GPLONLy kernel symbols which makes it kernel derivative. HP is still investigating this matter and we hope to hear from them soon.

Green goes on to explain that the kernel appears to be a separate development from the Touchpad's WebOS kernel, with comments in the code suggesting that the kernels were developed by two separate teams. At any rate, the release of this code will certainly spice things up in the Touchpad's Android development community. Green has already indicated that bits of the code will probably make their way into CyanogenMod 9 for the Touchpad. For more information (and download links), check out Green's original post here.

Liam Spradlin
Liam loves Android, design, user experience, and travel. He doesn't love ill-proportioned letter forms, advertisements made entirely of stock photography, and writing biographical snippets.

  • SiliconAddict

    Is it bad that this news borderline sexually aroused me? O_o

    Seriously this is actually pretty damn big news.

    • malaeum

      With the migration to ICS I question the importance of the old code base. What benefits are to be expected from this? The few things not working now in ICS already do in GB, the issue is the new kernel.

  • sgtguthrie

    Check @dalingrin on twitter. It doesn't appear to him that this will do much. Of course, the Wi-Fi driver would be excellent for the cause if HP "finds" it ;-)

    • malaeum

      That is sort of what I figured. Wifi and maybe their bluetooth stack are about the only things useful (if the stack even carries over to 4.0).

      This would have certainly helped if we were stuck in GB, but HP was likely working on this over a year ago and the codebase has moved on.

  • Jer

    They wouldn't have tried to get it if there was no benefits

  • http://mgamerzproductions.com Mgamerz

    Hope they have a wifi driver/module. Cause god the current one sucks big time! Half of the time I cannot even connect to anything for at least a half an hour.

  • Ronnie

    Took them long enough

  • Jaz

    I can't wait for cm9. I love my touchpad and really like webos and to be able to dual boot would be awesome.

    • swazedahustla

      Not sure what you are waiting for......CM9 Alpha is out there for you to get. The things that don't work are pretty similar to what wasn't working on CM7 initially like camera. But im getting the same use of out it that I did with CM7.

  • Falconator

    I wonder if there will be WebOS mods for other Android Devices soon...?