With the recent release of the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich source code many are wondering when we’ll start seeing custom ROMs built on the AOSP code, rather than from ports using code ripped from the SDK or Galaxy Nexus that we’re seeing now.
According to a tweet from Cyanogen, the race has begun, and the estimated time for us to see the first builds released is approximately two months.
That’s unusual for Cyanogen. Usually the answer to when a ROM will be available is “when it’s ready”. Getting a time-frame from the leader of the group himself is very nice. However, we find ourselves asking whether this is an actual time-frame, or just a way to stem-off the flow of “when can I expect Ice Cream Sandwich” questions.
Another item of note, the current CyanogenMod ROM is 7.1.x, which is based on Gingerbread. There apparently will be no 8.x version of the ROM based on Honeycomb, the team will jump right up to version 9.x with Ice Cream Sandwich.
That makes sense, ICS will run on both smartphones and tablets. It’s worth mentioning, however, that the Honeycomb source code has also been released.
We think this move was more out of necessity to comply with licensing requirements than to get developers to build ROMs based on that version of Android. We expect most will simply skip Honeycomb and jump right to ICS, like CyanogenMod is doing. Further, we suspect this was Google’s game-plan all along.