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Official statement from Google regarding the Cyanogen controvery

OP blueheeler

26th September 2009, 12:34 AM   |  #1  
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I have no idea where this needs to be posted. There are a number of different threads regarding this topic, and I know at least one of them are locked. So mods, feel free to move, delete or merge this as you see fit.

Google, via the Android Developers Blog, issued a statement a short while back. Here it is ...

Quote:

A Note on Google Apps for Android
Posted by Dan Morrill on 25 September 2009 at 2:31 PM

Lately we've been busy bees in Mountain View, as you can see from the recent release of Android 1.6 to the open-source tree, not to mention some devices we're working on with partners that we think you'll really like. Of course, the community isn't sitting around either, and we've been seeing some really cool and impressive things, such as the custom Android builds that are popular with many enthusiasts. Recently there's been some discussion about an exchange we had with the developer of one of those builds, and I've noticed some confusion around what is and isn't part of Android's open source code. I want to take a few moments to clear up some of those misconceptions, and explain how Google's apps for Android fit in.

Everyone knows that mobile is a big deal, but for a long time it was hard to be a mobile app developer. Competing interests and the slow pace of platform innovation made it hard to create innovative apps. For our part, Google offers a lot of services such as Google Search, Google Maps, and so on and we found delivering those services to users' phones to be a very frustrating experience. But we also found that we weren't alone, so we formed the Open Handset Alliance, a group of like-minded partners, and created Android to be the platform that we all wished we had. To encourage broad adoption, we arranged for Android to be open-source. Google also created and operates Android Market as a service for developers to distribute their apps to Android users. In other words, we created Android because the industry needed an injection of openness. Today, we're thrilled to see all the enthusiasm that developers, users, and others in the mobile industry have shown toward Android.

With a high-quality open platform in hand, we then returned to our goal of making our services available on users' phones. That's why we developed Android apps for many of our services like YouTube, Gmail, Google Voice, and so on. These apps are Google's way of benefiting from Android in the same way that any other developer can, but the apps are not part of the Android platform itself. We make some of these apps available to users of any Android-powered device via Android Market, and others are pre-installed on some phones through business deals. Either way, these apps aren't open source, and that's why they aren't included in the Android source code repository. Unauthorized distribution of this software harms us just like it would any other business, even if it's done with the best of intentions.

I hope that clears up some of the confusion around Google's apps for Android. We always love seeing novel uses of Android, including custom Android builds from developers who see a need. I look forward to seeing what comes next!

Source:
http://android-developers.blogspot.c...r-android.html
26th September 2009, 12:36 AM   |  #2  
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Yep, it's over.
26th September 2009, 12:37 AM   |  #3  
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We're still asking for community access to these applications that are almost essential to the current Android experience. I really doubt it's hurting their bottom line substantially enough to justify the killing of their distribution.

In other words, Mr. Morrill's post was pretty much a sugarcoated attempt to gain some of the PR they lost.

Quote:

We always love seeing novel uses of Android, including custom Android builds from developers who see a need.

A "novel" use from a developer who "sees a need" is quite a way to describe a substantially improved version of your OS.
Last edited by coolbho3000; 26th September 2009 at 12:41 AM.
26th September 2009, 12:39 AM   |  #4  
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So what is the conclusion? A lot of the things could be replaced, but as mentioned before, the sync tools and so forth are tricky to get around. What is the next step from here?
26th September 2009, 12:40 AM   |  #5  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cyanogen

Yep, it's over.

How so? What would be wrong with releasing the ROM without the google apps, but have a script or something that runs on first boot that installs the missing apps?
AdrianK
26th September 2009, 12:42 AM   |  #6  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cyanogen

Yep, it's over.

So no more ROMs? Or no more ROMs with close-source apps?
26th September 2009, 12:42 AM   |  #7  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AquaVita

How so? What would be wrong with releasing the ROM without the google apps, but have a script or something that runs on first boot that installs the missing apps?

It's still illegal. A clever trick to walk around the legal fine print. But in essence, it's illegal...
26th September 2009, 12:43 AM   |  #8  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AquaVita

How so? What would be wrong with releasing the ROM without the google apps, but have a script or something that runs on first boot that installs the missing apps?

Without the basic function to sign into the device using your Google credentials, the ROM is useless. You can't just grab them from another build (as far as I know) because of the way they are tied in at compiling to the framework. So you would have to pull the ROM, grab the proprietary pieces from somewhere else, and compile the source yourself.

Right?

To touch on this in another way, what would it take for Cyanogen to become a licensed distributor of Google's Apps for Android? If there are really 30,000 users, couldn't legal fees be gathered from them? And, couldn't the business license be set up as a Not-For-Profit? Like the Association of Cyanogen Followers? If it were, wouldn't the required fees to license the distribution rights of the software be tax-free and operating expenses for the association? Meaning, any costs for running the business could be taken out of membership dues and donations? With the rest being tax write-offs?

Just a thought, as I would love to see this made legit, 4.0.4 is great, but I don't want this to stop here.... selfish I know, but it's the truth.
Last edited by daveid; 26th September 2009 at 12:48 AM.
26th September 2009, 12:44 AM   |  #9  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AquaVita

How so? What would be wrong with releasing the ROM without the google apps, but have a script or something that runs on first boot that installs the missing apps?

I guees thats no way. What if you have a wipe? No APNs or anything else? You cant dowmload "Market" als a single-app directly from google (as i know).
26th September 2009, 12:44 AM   |  #10  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daveid

Without the basic function to sign into the device using your Google credentials, the ROM is useless. You can't just grab them from another build (as far as I know) because of the way they are tied in at compiling to the framework. So you would have to pull the ROM, grab the proprietary pieces from somewhere else, and compile the source yourself.

Right?

Then what the hell is google talking about "encouraging other ROM releases"? If that isn't possible without some pieces of Google software, then is it literally impossible to develop a custom ROM for android?

Thoughts, Cyanogen?

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