In the Android customization and hacking community, CyanogenMod is one of the biggest names in custom ROMs for devices. We’ve covered them quite a bit here before, as the ROM is available for a large number of devices, from the HTC EVO series to the Galaxy Nexus. Since CyanogenMod is based on the Android Open Source Project source code, every time a new Android version is released CyanogenMod potentially has to change quite a number of things, from their supported devices to included features. Especially since the Ice Cream Sandwich based CyanogenMod 9 Release Candidate 1 was just released a few days ago, there has been a bit of confusion about how CyanogenMod will go about handling the new 4.1 OS when the 4.0 based mod isn’t finished yet, while still maintaining the old CM 7.2 Gingerbread based mod.
Fortunately, yesterday the CyanogenMod team took to Google+ in an attempt to clarify what the plan is for the next version of CyanogenMod when Google releases the source for Android 4.1. First, they talked version numbers and simply confirmed that CyanogenMod 10 would be the Jelly Bean based version, not 9.1. They also mentioned “Project Butter,” and said that the changes would easily merge with CyanogenMod’s code and would not break compatibility for devices that meet the CM9 criteria. Because the team rewrote nearly all their tweaks for Android 4.0, these too should merge fairly seamlessly with the new Android 4.1 code. Of course, the team will still have to do some work, but it actually sounds as if the transition from CM9 to CM10 will be a very smooth one.
So, what of the unfinished CyanogenMod 9? The CyanogenMod team has said that any device that will run CM9 should get CM10, but there are no promises. As such, they will be releasing the CM9 stable release while they work on CM10, but with CM9 completed will turn their focus to just maintaining the legacy CM7 as well as CM10. Finally, they addressed the dreaded ETA, which is what most people want to know about new versions of Cyanogenmod. While I predict nightlies by at least the end of this month, the CyanogenMod team has stuck with their traditional response: Don’t ask for ETAs, it will be ready when it’s ready.