Publishing the kernel source of an Android-powered smartphone is needed for the OEM to comply with the GNU General Public License v2, and it also helps third-party developers to build custom recoveries and ROMs for that device. An ideal kernel source release should be accompanied by appropriate commit history, and all the dependencies are expected to be properly documented. While we don’t expect every OEM to maintain such high-quality control, even a partial release should be enough for experienced developers to get the ball rolling. Manufacturers like Motorola and Nubia have a good track record of releasing kernel sources and they have now posted kernel sources for the Moto G8 Plus and the Nubia Mini 5G, respectively. Realme, on the other hand, has released a revised kernel source package targeting the Realme 1 and the Realme U1.
Motorola Moto G8 Plus
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 laden Moto G8 Plus was launched back in October 2019. The phone runs Android Pie out of the box, and its Android 10 update is under soak testing at this moment. As expected, the kernel source release for this device corresponds to the stable Android Pie-based firmware with the build number PPIS29.65-51-5.
Nubia Mini 5G
Nubia’s Mini 5G is a first-gen 5G phone, which is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 850 chip paired with a Snapdragon X50 modem. According to our own Adam Conway, the “mini” phone felt like more of a proof-of-concept than an actual retail product. Nevertheless, the OEM has finally released the kernel source code, which can be downloaded using the link below.
Realme 1 and Realme U1
Realme has no plan to roll out a stable Android 10 update for the Realme 1 and the Realme U1, but XDA’s developer community has somewhat managed to fill the void. The company delivered the ColorOS 6 flavored Android Pie update for the phone duo more than a year ago, but they didn’t update the kernel source repo till date. Now that the Pie-based kernel sources are live, we hope that these phones will get stable custom ROMs in the coming days.