The Cyanogen team stated that there would be “something special” in store for the new year, which as it turns out is the announcement of nightly builds of CyanogenMod 12, which is based on Android 5.0.1 Lollipop. The first rollout of CM12 nightlies is set to commence soon, although the team notes that work on the M release (milestone snapshot, more stable than a nightly but potentially some issues) is 85 percent complete as of now.
What is CM12?
CyanogenMod is a popular custom version of Android that is designed to increase performance and reliability over other stock Android builds released by Google and its carrier and manufacturer partners. The custom Android ROM is also highly optimized with enhanced privacy settings, more customization options and no carrier bloatware.
CyanogenMod 12 is based on Android 5.0.1 Lollipop, which is Google’s latest build of the Android OS. The team advise that though the builds are usable, they consider them 85% complete at this stage, there’s still some fairly major features still missing or incomplete. They will be bringing up the rest of the devices they intend to move to CM12, as well as implementing features from CM11 into the new Material UI for the rest of the month.
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The list of things still being completed are :
- Theme Engine
- Quick Settings reorganization and customization
- Quick Settings Ribbon mode
- Navigation bar reorganization and customization
- Sound panel customization
- Lock-screen quick unlock
Cyanogen Team said:
“CM11 features aren’t the only thing we’re working on, with new features such as Ambient display, a brand new Messaging app, and some small tweaks including a weather option in the new Lollipop extended status bar. Our team is continuing to work on new additions and we have some big plans ahead for L”.
There’s new features being added to CM12 which aren’t in CM11, including ‘Ambient display, a brand new Messaging app, and some small tweaks including a weather option in the new Lollipop extended status bar’.
Most important to this announcement is that Cyanogen is officially pushing CM11 to weekly builds, in an effort to focus on CM12. CM11 is on version M12 now, with M13 still slated for release, but that will be the end of the road for CM11.
CyanogenMod has announced an initial list of devices that they will support with the CM12 nightlies, though they’ll add additional devices to the list as the days go on. These devices should have ‘full hardware support for the essentials (Calls, WiFi, BT, GPS, Camera, etc)’ but as this is a ‘Nightly’ release you should consider that and report any bugs you find.
So, if your device is on the list, you can start looking at flashing a CM12 build, but first a few words of wisdom from the CM team :
- This is an Android 5.0.1 Lollipop-based release – update your third party addons to ensure compatibility.
- The CM backupscript.sh in recovery will ignore and remove incompatible applications from your system partition (these are usually non-CM apps that users have opted to install). You must install a compatible app (or app pack) to regain that functionality.
- You can flash CM12 nightlies directly from CM11 M12 or CM 11 nightlies (no need to wipe), provided you read and followed items 1 and 2.
- Once one CM12 nightlies, you cannot downgrade back to CM11 – if you are thinking of just exploring the release, then take a backup of your existing installation if you want to go back to it.
- You’ll need an L compatible recovery.
To check if the CM12 nightly build is available for your device, head here. Do note that there will be bugs considering that this is a nightly build. As for now, the CyanogenMod blog states that the Android Lollipop-based build is available for 31 devices, with more being added on a daily basis.