Microsoft's home-built (or home-bought) smartphone lineup may not be long for this world, but it looks like the development community isn't giving up on it. The Nokia Lumia 520 is an entry-level Windows Phone 8 device, announced back in 2013, and later succeeded by the Lumia 525 and 530.
A few days ago, XDA developer banmeifyouwant posted a video of his in-progress CyanogenMod 13 port to the Lumia 525. The video shows CM13, based on Android 6.0, booting on the device as well as opening and closing apps.
The developer only demonstrated the 525 booting, but he is currently working on kernel tweaks to allow the 520 to boot as well.
Cyanogen Inc. recently experienced a round of layoffs as the company struggled to make its customized build of Android into a viable business. Through all the turmoil, Cyanogen Inc. CEO Kirt McMaster has contended that CyanogenMod (the non-commercial side) has tens of millions of users. Now, some are expressing doubt as to the accuracy of such figures. For a company fueled by venture money, that could be a problem.
The Android ROM community isn't quite as active as it was a few years ago with Android itself becoming more feature-rich. Still, CyanogenMod is chugging along with support for a ton of devices and a reasonably fast update cycle. A new snapshot build of the Marshmallow-based CyanogenMod 13 is now official (ZNH5Y), and it will be available on the first wave of devices today.
CyanogenMod founder and Cyanogen Inc. cofounder Steve Kondik has published a blog post on the official CyanogenMod blog today. That is the blog associated with the community project, not Cyanogen Inc. Kondik's post appears to serve dual purposes: to ensure the community that CyanogenMod isn't going anywhere (and no one suggested it was), and that the company's alleged "pivot to apps" isn't happening.
After Friday's layoffs, the post makes sense. There's no reason to believe that the reduction of staff at Cyanogen Inc responsible for the maintenance of the open source CyanogenMod project means the community-driven effort is in danger.
The OnePlus 3 runs OxygenOS, a custom version of Android that is similar-to-but-not-quite what you get on a Nexus. You get a few more options, but you're still ultimately dependent on a company for updates.
Phone tweakers and open source types like having more freedom, and that can come from flashing a custom ROM. OnePlus 3 owners now have the option to install the most popular community-supported ROM, CyanogenMod.
We're hearing from multiple sources that Cyanogen Inc. is in the midst of laying off a significant portion of its workforce around the world today. The layoffs most heavily impact the open source arm of the Android ROM-gone-startup, which may be eliminated entirely (not CyanogenMod itself, just the people at Cyanogen Inc.
Last year Cyanogen (the company) announced plans to release flashable bundles of its internally-developed, proprietary Android apps for CyanogenMod (the original community ROMs). It's taken a while, but now those apps are available for CyanogenMod 13 (that's the version based on Android 6.0). Users can download the package at cyngn.com/c-apps, and for the moment they include the custom theme chooser and theme store, Cyanogen's Truecaller-equipped dialer, the new Gallery app, the Cyanogen Account manager, and the AudioFX equalizer.
The march of CyanogenMod continues as nightlies hit two Samsung devices. The Galaxy Tab S2 9.7 and the Galaxy Note 8 are receiving CM13 nightlies, with both the WiFi and the LTE variants of the Tab S2 9.7 included.
The Galaxy Note 8 was released in April 2013 with Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, while the Galaxy Tab S2 9.7 hit the market less than a year ago, in September 2015, running Android 5.0 Lollipop. The Galaxy Note 8 is only upgradeable officially to 4.4 KitKat, so getting 6.0 Marshmallow support, albeit through CyanogenMod, will be a big boon to owners of that device.
Fans of the community-created CyanogenMod ROM, your cup runneth over with new gadgets to try out on CM 13 (based on Android 6.0 code). Five new phones and a tablet have been given the nightly treatment in the last week or so, to wit: the OnePlus 2, the Moto X Pure (the US multi-carrier variant of the Moto X Style), Yu's low-priced Yureka, the Oppo R5 and R5s, and the original version of Sony's Xperia Tablet Z. They're all available at their respective download locations under CM's somewhat nebulous device codenames.
Waiting on a carrier is not the only way to get the most recent version of Android onto your device. There's the option to flash a custom ROM instead.
You can't go that route unless your device is supported, so technically, you may still find yourself waiting. Fortunately CyanogenMod 13 nightlies with Android 6.0 have now arrived for the Galaxy S5 on Sprint, US Cellular, and Vodafone.