CyanogenMod Installer pulled from Google Play Store

Cyanogen, Inc. has announced through the company blog that CyanogenMod Installer has been voluntarily pulled from the Play Store after Google pointed out that the app violated the Store's Terms of Service.

CyanogenMod Installer, an easy-to-use solution to install the popular after-market Android based ROM on supported devices was launched recently on the Google Play Store. The app simply acts as an interface to enable ADB on the user's phone and later proceeds to install the CyanogenMod ROM from the desktop.

The company has posted that Google contacted them regarding the app and indicated that it violated the Play Store's developer terms. Google asked Cyanogen to remove the app voluntarily or it would be forcibly removed if the company failed to comply.

According to Google, the app in itself is harmless as it enables functionality which is natively present in devices but insisted that it encourages the users to void their warranty which is the reason why it would not be allowed in the store.

Cyanogen mentions that the installer has been downloaded hundreds of times and that it had realistic demand from users. The company remains committed to getting their installer to users and would publish it to the Amazon Appstore and Samsung Apps in the near future. Until then users who want to install this app would have to sideload it from the company's website.

Source: Cyanogen Blog

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54 Comments

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This is my first android phone, while I'm not into using CyanogenMod right now - I fully understand the proposition to experiment, to go beyond where one feels comfortable and learn - and share.

I think this is the "android experience".

Microsoft is not interested in this at all. Especially the sharing part. This is why they can not compete in this arena.

It's kind of like Linux - but more organized.
Rick

Seems pretty damn stupid to me, a user that already knows what Cyanogen Mod is will already be aware of the risks of voiding their warranty, besides Rom Manager has been doing the same thing for a couple of years (it can download and flash all manner of ROMs) and it hasn't been removed.

Yeah i don't see that mod tools should be available via the official (and trusted by end users) store. I'm talking exclusively about the warranty voiding mainly.

this mod tool changed one setting on your phone which you could have done yourself and then the desktop installer took over
i used it on my sgs3 and it worked flawlessly so im happy =]
plus my warrenty was allready voided the moment the friggen glass shattered and i had to replace it myself

Edited by DKAngel, Nov 28 2013, 11:00am :

StarkWiz said,
is CM good on Nexus smartphones as well ? I wonder as it's not bloated.

Yup Nexus phones are supported by CyanogenMod. TBH, CyanogenMod is a near-stock-Android experience though. The big advantage of using CM over stock Google Android: Many advanced settings/parameters.

The CM Launcher looks a lot like the Google Launcher, the Theme is the same, etc.

StarkWiz said,
is CM good on Nexus smartphones as well ? I wonder as it's not bloated.

If you are looking for a lean experience you stay stock, Nexus runs vanilla Android and its about as lean as it gets..You can gain root and change permission on some folders to disable logging and remove unwanted system files if you wanted to get even leaner.

Good and really doesnt need to be in the app store. Anyone using Cyanogen should know how to side load and those who dont shouldnt be messing with it any way.

On a side note, nice to see the usual comments here.

Disagreed. App store gave Cyanogen mod much needed exposure and makes the whole project seem much more legitimate than "side load this app" approach.

The app is also completely harmless, it does not "one button" flash your phone or somehow automatically brick it if used by an average Android user.

So people looking to get their foot in the door need not apply? I have a fairly good understanding of this stuff but Im not overly confident that I wont brick my phone. You gotta start somewhere. Also bricking can be reversed pretty easily. IIRC you just have to wipe and flash again, maybe use a nandroid back which you should make, anyways.

It's not like they're preventing you from using it, you could still download and install it from their website.

The term side load makes it seem like a hacking type thing to get it running. When really, you select one option, download, and install it.

They could still freely distribute it in Europe by using Play store, as bricked phones are covered by warranty here

Hello,

Zaic said,
They could still freely distribute it in Europe by using Play store, as bricked phones are covered by warranty here

Source please

lmaobox said,

That article isn't implying to what you posted here.


Okay, in simple, easy to understand terms, under EU legislation a manufacturer should not be able to deny you your statutory consumer rights in regard to warranty claims on your phone just because you changed the software that your handset runs on (as long as you bought the device as a consumer in the EU)

However if the custom firmware fails to use build in protections to not overheat the device, changing voltages/amperes or anything else that can physically damage the phone. Your warranty is still voided.

adrynalyne said,
More like, Open as long as you don't use our services to promote voided warranties and potential lawsuits.

Try to find out what google is doing with android, then we can talk.

Nice deflection. Last I checked, this was about using their services to promote a product that ruins warranties. Now you want to make it about Android in general?

The play store is neither open source, nor open. It never has been. You can still side load the app. CM exists because the openness of Android. So much for your argument.

Edited by adrynalyne, Nov 28 2013, 2:18pm :

I used it, and I'm happy with the results, but the Play Store gives it exposure to people who don't understand the potential consequences.

Having it available from their site is more than sufficient.

Raa said,
No issues with HTC Sense whatsoever here.

Ditto that. May have been true in the past but very pleased with my stock HTC One. Not that I have anything against CyanogenMod, I do run it on a couple other devices that would otherwise be stuck in Android 2.x land.

riahc3 said,
Hello,

Fixed that for you.

No, you just failed to understand that it is possible to de-bloat any stock ROM as long as you can get ROOT (temporary or permanent) and have R/W access to system/app.

Good call.

For the most part I'd assume those downloading this would understand the risks involved, up to and including warranty voiding. There are a few though that wouldn't understand these risks and cause far more trouble than it's worth. Google is actually doing the Cyanogen Team a favour imo.

I always thought this was a bad idea. It was just too accessible.

too accessible? when is that really a bad thing? Maybe you belong to the iOS crowd.

I don't use CyanogenMod per se, but AOKP is fantastic, IMO. It has been so well tested that I don't think it is that easy to brick a phone.

P.S. I use both iOS and Android daily, and I love the freedom with Android devices. iOS provides great user experience, although jailbreaking it is still not as fun as android.

iOS has nothing to do with it. Anyone who reads this site will have no issue with the tool, because we know what to do if something goes wrong, we can fix small issues. However for the general population who isn't tech oriented, they'll grab this off Google Play and then somehow break their phone or at least render it unusable for a wee while until someone changes a simple setting or something.

As long as it is available (i.e. off dev website), I don't think there's much issues. I also use both iPhone and Android, one thing I've learnt is that without jailbreak, iphone has a lot less issues with inexperienced users, they grab everything off the App Store which is pretty decent in filtering crap, and it's happy times for everyone.

dingl_ said,
Good, nobody wants Bricked phones and voided warranty

Without CyanogenMod, I would still be using a crappy, bloated, Samsung-flavoured, Android 4.1.2 on my Galaxy S 3

I'm now using Kit Kat 4.4 and it runs flawlessly.
Thanks CM and other ROMs based on CM!

Hello,

dingl_ said,
Good, nobody wants Bricked phones and voided warranty

Since when does this brick your phone?

I imagine a disclaimer is added that it voids your warrranty...

if i were to switch to android. i'll be sure to get a cyanogen-supported phone. i like clean install. no oem craps. that's one main reason i moved away from windows.

Albert said,
if i were to switch to android. i'll be sure to get a cyanogen-supported phone. i like clean install. no oem craps. that's one main reason i moved away from windows.
But if you're willing to install the O/S yourself (as you would be with Cyanogen) then you can have a clean Windows install, you just wipe install it without the OEM crapware.

Mr.XXIV said,
That's pretty ironic when Android users talk about "freedom".

No, it's not ironic. Anyone that actually understands how the ecosystem works knows that the core OS itself is "free" insofar that it can be modified it á la Cyanogenmod. But Google's store, although closely linked to Android, isn't free and they can run it as they see fit. And no phone manufacturer will support an unofficial OS because it makes tech support a nightmare when someone tries to do something they can't and bricks their phone.

Of course, any opportunity to make a cheap shot at Google, regardless of whether it's backed up by facts, is hilarious.

mog0 said,
But if you're willing to install the O/S yourself (as you would be with Cyanogen) then you can have a clean Windows install, you just wipe install it without the OEM crapware.

sure. me "willing to install" is not the issue. getting "it without oem crapware" is.

Geranium_Z__NL said,

I dont even understand your reasoning now.

perhaps you didn't understand the problem from the get go. that's ok. it means you are with the in crowd here at neowin.

Majesticmerc said,

No, it's not ironic. Anyone that actually understands how the ecosystem works knows that the core OS itself is "free" insofar that it can be modified it á la Cyanogenmod. But Google's store, although closely linked to Android, isn't free and they can run it as they see fit. And no phone manufacturer will support an unofficial OS because it makes tech support a nightmare when someone tries to do something they can't and bricks their phone.

Of course, any opportunity to make a cheap shot at Google, regardless of whether it's backed up by facts, is hilarious.

Are you sure you caught what I said?

Being an iOS user, I always hear Android fanboys talk about how they get so much "freedom" on their device, when it really isn't all that great depending on the distro and it isn't all that secure of an OS in the long run. Technically I was backing up Android in a way up there, to the sense that this guy acts like having a stock Android or a OEM is the greatest thing in the planet instead of having the ability to modify the OS yourself.

Majesticmerc said,

No, it's not ironic. Anyone that actually understands how the ecosystem works knows that the core OS itself is "free" insofar that it can be modified it á la Cyanogenmod. But Google's store, although closely linked to Android, isn't free and they can run it as they see fit. And no phone manufacturer will support an unofficial OS because it makes tech support a nightmare when someone tries to do something they can't and bricks their phone.

Of course, any opportunity to make a cheap shot at Google, regardless of whether it's backed up by facts, is hilarious.


When is the last time Google offered help to people when they installed malware from the store? Besides perhaps the forced remote-uninstall.

Mr.XXIV said,

Are you sure you caught what I said?

Being an iOS user, I always hear Android fanboys talk about how they get so much "freedom" on their device, when it really isn't all that great depending on the distro and it isn't all that secure of an OS in the long run. Technically I was backing up Android in a way up there, to the sense that this guy acts like having a stock Android or a OEM is the greatest thing in the planet instead of having the ability to modify the OS yourself.

But Android's freedom IS great, the problem here is that the Cyanogenmod installer violated the Play store TOS, plain and simple. I think the point that dingl_ is trying to make is that making an installer app on the Play store somewhat trivialises the idea of switching ROMS, and makes it appealing to people who could potentially break their hardware without knowing the risks. It's like having a gun cabinet. You sure as hell don't give someone the key if they aren't aware of the risks of playing with guns.

Shadowzz said,

When is the last time Google offered help to people when they installed malware from the store? Besides perhaps the forced remote-uninstall.

How is that relevant to anything I said?

Shadowzz said,

Supplying malware or possible brickification through the store, whats the difference?

Well aside from the obvious "one is a warranty void problem, and the other is an insidious piece of software designed to extort, steal and generally be a pain in the ass" difference, Google remove both from their store, as demonstrated here.