With over eight million users CyanogenMod is the most popular community-based Android distribution. It allows users to get the latest Android updates quickly, rather than waiting months for manufacturers such as Samsung or HTC to adapt a new version of Android for their devices. The current version is available for about 50 devices.
Compared with the standard version of Android on the Nexus devices CyanogenMod has many additional features and allows the user to configure the device more fully. For example, the user can adjust the size of the widgets, hide the caption under the symbols and the search bar, set the number of screens and set the grid for rows and columns. In addition, you can configure the scrolling direction (horizontal or vertical) of the App Drawer. Another highlight is the resizing of widgets, allowing the available screen space can be better utilised.
Very popular is the ability to configure the lock screen shortcuts for launching applications or actions. The choices are in addition to all installed apps as well as actions such as starting a music playlist, a route or just a particular setting option. Under profiles, situational settings can be saved.
To install CyanogenMod, the bootloader must be unlocked and the custom recovery installed. In addition to the manual method, toolkits are available that take to unlock the bootloader for the respective devices, including the N-Cry toolkit for Nexus devices.
Version 10.1.3 is the final planned release for the 10.1 code branch, with the developers focusing their efforts on CM 10.2 and eventually Android 4.4 ‘KitKat’.