CyanogenMod, an open source alternative operating system built on top of Google Android, looks set to become an operating system in its own right after raising $7m (£4.3m) in funding.
The smartphone operating system "mod" has already been installed on more than seven-and-a-half million Android-based smartphones and tablets but the funding will allow CM to employ full-time coders to work on the project, as opposed to the enthusiasts working on the OS in their own time for free.
Mitch Laskey, one of the venture capitalists who helped raise the $7m, described CyanogenMod as "based upon Google's Android open source project, and designed to vastly improve the speed, security, and overall user experience of Android on mobile phones and tablets".
"CyanogenMod is already in use on millions of handsets, and with the simplified installer that the company is announcing simultaneously with this financing, that number is sure to grow quickly.
"We believe that CyanogenMod is poised to become one of the largest mobile operating systems in the world," claimed Laskey.
Cyanogen Inc will be headed up by technology chief Steve Kondik, who was involved with a lot of the early work on the Android modification and the firm will be located in Seattle. The deployment of CyanogenMod as an operating system in its own right would allow apps to be developed specifically for it.
Writing in a blog post, Kondik said the first task for CyanogenMod would be to make the process of installing it on Android devices much simpler.
"The biggest obstacle we wanted to get out of the way is the hideous installation process," he wrote.
"Today there are more open and unlockable devices than ever, but they all have their quirks and wildly different installation procedures. We've done our best to document the process for every device we support on our wiki, but it is still a daunting process for mere mortals," Kondik continued.
"This is not sufficient. Installation needs to be easy and safe. This is a great deal of complexity to manage when you are talking about almost a hundred different devices, but we decided to tackle it," he added.
According to Kondik, the CyanogenMod installer will be available on the Google Play store in a few weeks.