Even though Android is mostly Open Source Software (software that gives users the freedom to run and distribute the software for any purpose), few devices usually come with proprietary software (software where the developers or distributors reserve all freedoms and rights) like Bluetooth etc. and services that prevent people from using them in an independent and autonomous way.
Henceforth, free software foundation (fsf) has been working on a project called Replicant OS to reduce the dependency on proprietary drives and make a complete open source project.
Replicant is a free and open source software based on the Android mobile platform, which aims to replace all proprietary Android components with their free software counterparts, in other words Replicant aims at developing a #Android OS software which uses free software without exceptions, giving the user control over every aspect of the device. In simple terms user can change, modify and share the software ‘free’. The developing team of Replicant believes that even though Android is open source, there are still considerable amount of proprietary software (such as drivers or libraries).
Replicant does not use any paid drivers, therefore it currently works on a limited number of devices. It presently delivers 4.2 Android version. It lacks Play Store, but users can download the applications from F-Droid app store (app store contains only free-of-charge, free and open-source software).
With exceptions for Wi-Fi and Bluetooth for proprietary software. Presently there are very few devices which support Replicant OS. These include:
- Nexus S.
- Samsung Galaxy SII.
- Samsung Galaxy SIII.
- Samsung Galaxy S.
- Galaxy Nexus.
- Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1).
- Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (7.0).
- Samsung Galaxy Note 2.
- Samsung Galxay Note (Original).
- HTC dream/HTC magic.
- Nexus One.
- LG Optimus Black.
Note and Conclusion:
Currently very few number of developers are working on Replicant OS. But I hope it will grow bigger in coming future and most of people started preferring Open Source these days.
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