QUALCOMM, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) and Cyanogen Inc. are partnering in the development of Qualcomm Reference Design smartphone, the companies announced during the ongoing Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain.
The announcement from QUALCOMM, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) and Cyanogen Inc. comes after news that the latter, in its bid to become a more mainstream company and evolve from its hacker roots, has attracted substantial investments from industry giants.
As part of the collaboration, Cyanogen Inc. will provide support in developing features and user interface enhancement for the Cyanogen Operating System for certain QUALCOMM, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) Snapdragon processors.
These reference designs will be for lower-tier Snapdragon 200, 400 and 600 series chipsets from the chip giant which means Cyanogen’s brand of Android will be spread to more lower-end devices.
“We’re addressing the needs of device makers in developed and developing markets looking for a truly differentiated software experience that matter to consumers,” Kirt McMaster, Cyanogen CEO said in a statement.
The companies say that these enhancements will be available for the upcoming release of the Qualcomm Reference Design in April. Reference Designs are essentially templates for smartphones that are meant to help smaller device makers with more limited resources to quickly rollout their own branded devices.
The open source version of Android Cyanogen is supporting will replace Qualcomm’s own Android builds for its reference designs.
Aside from the partnership with QUALCOMM, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM), Cyanogen Inc. has also unveiled a new company brand, ridding itself of its past logos and introducing a cleaner logo that inspires “a sense of motion and a feeling of inherent energy.”
The upstart was recently in the news after it was reported that it was negotiating a massive $70 million funding round with companies like Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) participating. Cyanogen Inc. is spearheading a move for a more open Android, hoping to wrest control of Android from its main patron, Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL).
William B. Gray’s Orbis Investment Management increased its stake by 141% quarter over quarter in QUALCOMM, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) by the end of the December quarter, ending the year with about 7.47 million shares in the chip maker.
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