What Is CyanogenMod And Why Should You Care?

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I recently read a somewhat shocking interview with Kirt McMaster, CEO of a company called Cyanogen, where he said that Samsung was going to be the next Nokia and was going to get “slaughtered” in coming years. He went on to say that Apple (Apple!!) itself was going to have trouble. Within 5 years. Needless to say I wanted to dig deeper and learn more about Cyanogen and it’s product, CyanogenMod, which McMaster promises will be a very disruptive force in the not-too-distant future of the mobile industry. To learn more I spoke with Steve Kondik, Cyanogen’s CTO.

What do you mean when you say “open OS”? What does this mean to the non-techie end-user?

Steve Kondik: That’s a great question. Open OS is not the same thing as open source. The concept of the open OS is securely enabling 3rd party developers to become more deeply integrated with the operating system—something they simply can’t do today on either Google Android and iOS, which favor their own native services. From the smartphone user’s perspective, an open OS is fundamentally about user choice and being able to choose your core default apps and services (i.e. personal assistant, maps, browser, entertainment, etc.). Market by market, there is significant variation on what people use around the world. A one-size fits all approach doesn’t work, and we fundamentally ...

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