A new Cyanogen OS update is out and it brings about an exciting new feature, called Mods. But, before we dive into the story, one thing that always seems to come up has to be clarified – we are talking about Cyanogen OS, as found on some YU and ZUK devices, as well as the OnePlus One. CyanogenMod, while also making great progress and already utilizing Android 6 Marshmallow in its stable builds, is a whole other OS that the update in question does not concern.
Now that that is out of the way, what are mods? Simply put, they are various third-party app features, baked right into the OS itself, in appropriate location for easy and convenient access. The Cyanogen team describes it as the post-app era and we have to admit, some of the concepts do sound incredibly useful.
For instance, Twitter is integrated in the lock screen, but not in the conventional widget or notification sense. Swiping left once on the locked screen actually takes you to a full-featured Twitter interface you can use. This screen can also be used to issue voice commands to Cortana. In the new update, the assistant has gotten smarter and can help you capture the perfect selfie by simply saying – “take a selfie”.
Cyanogen OS 13.1
Skype has its own mod integration as well. It is baked into the Phone app in Cyanogen 13.1. It mixes your Skype contacts with the rest and allows you to simply place a voice or video call through the Microsoft app with a single click. Convenience extends even further as you can also use the Skype Out feature from the dialer and even buy credits, so you can have one consistent Phone experience.
Other new additions include OneNote integration in the Phone and Email apps, so you can easily save texts and make notes for later. And last, but not least, the Camera app in Cyanogen OS 13.1 now has a Hyperlapse mode that was also developed using the Mods approach. This is probably what allows the same algorithm to also be used to hyperlapse existing videos as well.Currently, Cyanogen OS 13.1 seems to be out only for the OnePlus One, but if you are on one of the other devices officially supported by the OS, you should be eligible for the update soon as well.