Once Android 5.0 Lollipop was pushed to AOSP, many of you were wondering when your favorite custom ROMs would be making the leap and more importantly, which of your favorite features would remain. To answer this question, I’m tracking the progress of some of the most popular non-OEM-skin ROMs as they make the transition to Google’s latest and greatest codebase. OmniROM is one of the first to officially announce its rollout plans in detail (of course others have announced their plans, but to a lesser degree of detail).
In case you’re not familiar with OmniROM, it was created around the time Cyanogen Inc. was formally announced. Made up of a community-led development team including an all-star cast of legends from the development community (jerdog, Pulser, Andrew Dodd, XpLoDWilD to name a few), OmniROM introduced a number of original features to the rooted community. These include multi-window, OmniSwitch (a new take on Recents) and one of the first native file explorers to automatically integrate your cloud storage accounts through KitKat’s built-in cloud integration.
As for the ROM’s transition to Lollipop, I asked team publicist Jeremy Meiss (jerdog) the following questions:
Will all of the KitKat features be ported to OmniROM Lollipop?
That’s up to our community, but we hope most will be coming forward, except where they were superseded or made irrelevant by advances in L. In those cases, we hope to improve upon the user experience and functionality of stock, building on what we had before – example being our additions to Quiet Hours.
If not, do you know which ones won’t make the cut?
We don’t know – it’s very much down to our individual contributors, as Omni is a community-supported and community-led project.
Are there any new features you have decided upon for Lollipop?
Well, one thing has become clear with regards to AOSP 5.0 – Google does not care about, or seem to like, AOSP users. They’re breaking the AOSP applications left and right, and pulling many of them back to be proprietary. We’re in the process of getting people together from various projects to fix this. Get in touch if you’re interested – we want to make AOSP awesome again, even without Google apps!
Will your first Lollipop build be stock+, allowing for an earlier release or will you wait until you can include most of your most popular features?
We’ll wait until we have stable hardware support. At that point we’ll begin nightlies for devices with engaged and active maintainers. We are currently evaluating the feasibility of having a long-term support sub-project working on 4.4.4 if there are enough users with devices that will be left behind due to lack of OEM support for L. That is another reason to get in touch with us, as if there is enough interest it will help drive the direction.
Is there any estimated time frame for your first build?
It shouldn’t be too long now. The more that our maintainers get done now, the sooner it will happen. Our first priority is getting all of the hardware support stuff cleaned up and ready, and we’ve already seen several devices as old as the Galaxy Nexus (thanks to MWisBest) start to come up and build successfully. In the coming days we hope more maintainers will complete their bring ups and we can progress towards a nightly status.
You can find out more about their plans on their blog post, and if you know a few things about coding or if you’re willing to test some initial builds on your device you can contribute directly to their efforts here.