Cyanogen Inc., the commercial operation behind the highly popular Cyanogen range of Android OS variants, has announced a partnership with Microsoft that offers prospects of a more diverse Android platform in future – if it still counts as Android OS at all.
“Cyanogen Inc. and Microsoft Corp. announced a partnership to integrate popular Microsoft services across the Cyanogen Operating System,” states the Cyanogen release. “Under the partnership, Cyanogen will integrate and distribute Microsoft’s consumer apps and services across core categories, including productivity, messaging, utilities, and cloud-based services. As part of this collaboration, Microsoft will create native integrations on Cyanogen OS, enabling a powerful new class of experiences.”
This, it should be noted, applies to Cyanogen’s own Cyanogen OS, but not the CyanogenMod community-developed free variants – and CyanogenMod staffers rushed to reassure users that their own beloved mod family would not be affected. Exactly how much difference it will make to the user experience for Cyanogen OS users remains to be seen, not least for those using their phones as ereaders. According to the release, “the distribution arrangement includes a number of Microsoft services: Bing services, Skype, OneDrive, OneNote, Outlook, and Microsoft Office.” However, if Cyanogen OS parts company entirely with the Google Play Store, ereaders and other apps could be much harder to come by for Cyanogen OS phone users, or at least harder to find and install.