News by Brian James Kirk on Monday September 28, 2009.
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Google has ordered a custom Android ROM programmer to cease and desist distribution of the CyanogenMod ROM because it contains Google's proprietary applications like YouTube and Maps.
Google expressed support for custom Android builds in a blog post concerning the incident, but clarified that though Android was built to be modified and distributed, Google's applications are not.
The search giant said that Android was created to give any developer the ability to code compelling mobile applications and that Google uses the operating system in the same way. It too is a developer that wanted to create interesting proprietary applications for its Google services.
Cyanogen's developer commiserates. "I'd love for Google to hand over the keys to the kingdom and let us all have it for free, but that's not going to happen. And who can blame them," he asked in a written response to all the news.
The developer has changed tack only slightly, promising that there are still ways to offer the software without violating rights. CyanogenMod will be delivered as a "bare bones" ROM that will be able to make calls, send MMS, take photos and more, but without Google apps. Users will then potentially be able to make the decision to install the Google apps using a backup from their phone's original ROM.
Brian James Kirk
Brian is a former news editor on MobileBurn.com that freelances in Philadelphia. You can follow him on Twitter as @BrianJamesKirk.