CopperheadOS Overcame Its Internal Setbacks With Gusto & New Updates


CopperheadOS hasn't been in the news much since last year when it was reported to be on the brink of collapse but the ROM has been receiving updates and even thrived. That's according to Copperhead Director and CEO James Donaldson who recently reached out to Android Headlines with a brief progress report for the company's efforts.

Not only has CopperheadOS not gone under, but the company has also continued to be profitable, according to the executive. No exact details have been provided regarding just how profitable the company was over the past months. But the company has released several updates, on a nearly monthly basis since the drama within was last reported.

In fact, CopperheadOS has seen the arrival of no fewer than 12 updates, highlighted in documentation shared by Mr. Donaldson. At least one of those has dropped within the past month.


The trouble in at Copperhead may have been overblown

In June 2018, CopperheadOS quickly rose in the news, not as a secure ROM for Pixel and Nexus devices but as a company that might be at its end. That's because of a dispute between at least two of its employees that at very least involved James Donaldson and then-developer and 50-percent co-owner Daniel Micay.

The highly-visible spat centered around an apparently leaked internal message suggesting that Daniel Micay had been forced out. Specifically, it indicated that Mr. Micay had been unable "to maintain the confidentiality of Company business."

Further details about the matter were never publicized but the matter was expected to be resolved with plans to continue forward without Mr. Micay.


After issuing what equates to a cease and desist order to Mr. Micay, the developer reportedly sabotaged the project. In summary, the company's subreddit indicated that Mr. Micay seemed to have deleted the signing keys associated with the project. The keys are an integral part of that process as they relate to the certification of the project.

That left open a couple of negative possibilities for the security-focused ROM. The first was that CopperheadOS might need to be restarted from scratch. Having lost the ability to provide updates, it could have shut down entirely. That apparently has not happened at all. Just one month later, Copperhead began releasing a slew of new CopperheadOS updates. Those landed in July, September, October, November, and December of last year.

Each of those centered on security and bug patches, as well as the addition of components to make updating easier. But bigger changes were on the way. After a brief hiatus in between those updates, CopperheadOS was updated to Android 9 Pie in March of this year. Subsequent updates have followed through until August.


So what's in the newest CopperheadOS updates?

The two most recent updates to CopperheadOS are equally big news for users. With the August update, the company placed in the relevant Android security patch August security patch. But it also initialized a new licensing mechanism. More importantly, it began work to prepare for Android 10.

In mid-November, Copperhead released another run of security patches, fixing everything from the September, October, and November releases. It also fixed updater caching and file notifications as well as packing in a new app service. Namely, that's a messaging system that delivers information directly from Copperhead. Simultaneously, it included an opt-out toggle in settings to allow users of the privacy-focused ROM to avoid those messages.