Update: This is now an official build. You can download the latest builds directly from the CyanogenMod download page.
The NOOK Color features a 7 inch, 1024 x 600 pixel display, an 800 MHz TI OMAP 3 processor, 8GB of storage, and a microSD card slot. It ships with a custom version of Google Android 2.3 that’s been skinned by B&N and tweaked to use a NOOK app store. But hackers have been running alternate builds of Android on the tablet almost as long as it’s been around.
Android 4.1 turned out to be a tough nut to crack though. Developers started working on Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich for the NOOK Color last year. Since then they’ve spent a lot of time upgrading to a newer kernel and improving hardware support.
Now that CyanogenMod 10 Alpha is available for the NOOK Color, almost everything works the way you’d expect it to on a tablet that shipped with the operating system.
There are still some issues. Netflix doesn’t work, and HD YouTube video playback isn’t supported, although standard definition YouTube videos look fine. Pressing the “n” button doesn’t wake the tablet from sleep yet. And if you want to plug the NOOK Color into a wall charger, make sure to wake it from sleep first, or the device won’t detect the charger.
Developers are still looking for solutions to these problems… and to any others that users may discover now that the software is widely available.
You can either install CyanogenMod 10 to the NOOK Color’s internal memory, or load it on a microSD card. The external storage option is handy, because it lets you dual-boot the NOOK Color. Insert the microSD card and reboot your system and you’ll be in CyanogenMod 10. Remove the card and reboot and you’re running the stock NOOK Color software (or whatever else you may have installed on the internal storage.
Out of the box, CM10 Alpha for the NOOK Color provides the same user interface used for the Google Nexus 7, Acer Iconia Tab A110, and other 7 inch tablets. It’s sort of a cross between the older Android tablet and smartphone user interfaces, with a notification bar at the top and buttons at the bottom.
But if you’d prefer the sort of design we usually see on 10 inch tablets, you can modify CyanogenMod 10 to use a “tablet UI.”
Note: An early build of Cyanogenmod 10 is also available for the NOOK Tablet. The NOOK Color version will not work on that 7 inch tablet.