CyanogenMod, the open-source operating system for smartphones and tablet computers, has released the official version of CyanogenMod 13.0 which is based on Android 6.0 Marshmallow builds. Until now only nightly/beta or unofficial builds of the CM 13 were accessible to users who wanted to install the custom ROM.
Around 39 devices will be compatible with the latest release including the Nexus 6P, OnePlus One, Moto E (2015), Nexus 5X, Nexus 4, Nexus 7 2013 (Wi-Fi), LG G2, ZUK Z1 and Oppo Find 7 among others. The CM 13.0 also CM 13.0 release 1 includes March security updates and new release builds which are expected to arrive every month.
Along with the goodness of Marshmallow features such as battery-saving Doze functionality, app permissions and more, the CM 13 brings its own tweaks to give users a better experience. For starters, it gets rid of encrypted Whisperpush text messages and fingerprint recognition extends beyond locking the home screen to specific apps . Privacy Guard has also been altered to comply with Marshmallow's new permission model.
The detailed CyanogenMod 13.0 features contains the following changes:
- Whisperpush capability (encrypted SMS) removed
- Settings > About phone > Advanced mode removed
- Settings > Notification Drawer > Quick Settings removed
- QS panel configuration items such as 'enlarge first row' and 'show weather' now present on leftmost QS pane while in edit mode
- 'Advanced location settings' renamed to 'Tri-state location'
- New controls for 'Status bar icons' (repurposing of SystemUI tuner from AOSP)
- Settings > Lockscreen > Quick unlock removed
- Settings > Sim Cards > manual provisioning switch (Multisim) removed
- Settings > Lock screen > Owner info replaced with lock screen message
- New screen (AOSP) to show memory usage over a selected period of time
- Device specific implementations of double-tap-to-wake replaced by AOSP implementation
- CM implementation of silent mode replaced by AOSP implementation
- CM Protected apps: New folder UX for viewing protected content
- Fingerprint support for accessing protected content
- Enhanced ability to prevent access while retaining usability: A protected app can no longer be launched via Play Store
- App notifications and services are not hampered by protection status
- Power menu ability to swap System Profiles removed
- New SMS/MMS Application: Notable features such as 'Quick reply' are available
- Users retain ability to control fine-grained permissions via Settings > Privacy > Privacy Guard
- Snap Camera: Some devices now ship with an enhanced camera app based on Qualcomm's Snapdragon camera
Along with the change logs, the Cyanogen blog also warns users that the CM13 Release 1 series comes with some restrictions and they have to follow a particular procedure to install the new custom ROM depending on the device's current software. For instance, those already running the CM 13 nightly builds should not install the latest release as the nightly is already running the latest codebase (Android 6.0.1_r22). If they still go ahead and do so, the system will crash as it will see this as an attempted database downgrade. For more procedural information click here.
CyanogenMod is developed as free and open source software based on the official releases of Android by Google, with added original and third-party code. Of late, a lot of people have taken to CyanogenMod as it offers features and options not found in the official firmware distributed by mobile device vendors.