Cyanogen reportedly fires OS staff in major shift towards apps

CyanogenMod Android

Cyanogen has apparently laid off about 30 of its staff members, with the majority of cuts coming from its open source division. The mass exodus spells bad news for the brand’s OS arm which may not be around for much longer.

As reported by Android Police, Cyanogen started the process of letting people go on 22 July, firing around 30 people out of its 136-strong workforce. The systems and QA teams in its Seattle and Palo Alto offices have been heavily affected. Even its smaller Lisbon and India offices have been more or less wiped out, in addition to community support members.

With so many cuts, the future of CyanogenMod is extremely uncertain. The company’s vision was to offer handset makers an alternative version of Android which wasn’t as heavily dominated by Google. It had managed to tie up with a few big-name brands like OnePlus, Lenovo and Micromax’s Yu to ship its OS, but seems to have failed to catch on beyond a niche audience.

Also See: Cyanogen 13.1 release brings MODs to the OnePlus One

According to Recode, Cyanogen is going to pivot towards app development now under the direction of its new COO Lior Tal, who recently joined the company roughly a month ago from Facebook. There’s no clear indication of what this could entail in the long run, but it could mean the company is planning to focus on its new Cyanogen MODs app platform.

Cyanogen’s had a rough go of it for the past couple of weeks. Several top executives such as longtime product head Dave Herman left the firm for greener pastures. The brand’s CEO Kirk McMaster hasn’t said anything official about the cuts or the new app-focused direction yet.