It’s been a while since we’ve last heard from OmniROM but the rather ambitious project hasn’t exactly gone silently into the night. The open source project is still alive and kicking even if it doesn’t try to grab the spotlight like CyanogenMod and Paranoid Android often do. For this round, the team is shedding some light on their Android 5.0 activities and sadly, it’s not all good news. The good news is, of course, that there is enough progress to soon have nightlies for supported devices.
Just a bit of history lesson for those who might have forgotten. OminROM was born out of the rather controversial incorporation of CyanogenMod’s core developers into Cyanogen, Inc. Some members felt that the move would inevitably clash with the open source spirit of CyangoenMod, which thankfully has not yet come to pass, at least not in a huge way. The custom Android ROM pledged to remain fully open source and community-driven and has sparked some rather interesting ideas for future features. Progress on the ROM has been relatively silent compared to other bigger and older ROMs, which might give the impression of stagnation.
It was still back in November when the team revealed plans and a bit of a teaser for Android Lollipop. Fast forward almost three months, OmniROM is now saying that its fans can expect nightlies soon. The number of officially supported devices have been comparatively small even back then and those that will have Lollipop is even smaller. Aside from technical issues, the real major hurdle for the team is finding a maintainer for a particular device. Unless one is found or steps up, the device cannot yet have its nightly build. There are also blocks coming from OEMs themselves, like not releasing kernel source code or totally dropping support for a legacy smartphone or tablet.
OmniROM has compiled a wiki page to make it easier to monitor the progress of the endeavor, including a list of supported devices. OmniROM notes that while they are indeed stopping nightlies for the Android 4.4 version, they will still be backporting important security and bug fixes to those older devices as long as they are possible.