The Android 4.4 KitKat-based CyanogenMod 11 custom ROM continues to be developed with the M8 version of its software, which became available on Tuesday.

The CyanogenMod team has been working with CyanogenMod 11 since December 2013. It releases “M” or “monthly” build versions every month to address vital bug fixes in addition to introducing new features. CyanogenMod has released eight monthly builds so far. Monthly versions are considered more stable than “nightly” build versions that come out more frequently with the latest features but with little attention to bugs or other issues.

The CM 11 M8 snapshot is based on Android 4.4.4 KitKat, the latest software by Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), which became available in mid-June. The new software version also includes Heads Up notifications, a feature that will officially be introduced in the upcoming Android L software. Google will make Android L available to the public this fall. Notably, it was CyanogenMod developers who discovered Heads Up notifications within Android’s open source code just days before Google showcased a developer’s preview of Android L at its I/O conference in June.

The CM 11 M8 snapshot will be available for up to 80 devices in the coming weeks. Many devices receiving CyanogenMod support for the first time include the OnePlus One, Oppo Find 7 and 7a, Xiaomi Mi2, and the Sony Xperia Z2.

CyanogenMod details a number of new and improved features found on this iteration of CM 11, in its change log, listed below:

Common: Android 4.4.4 (Google)

New Devices: Sony Xperia Z2 (sirius); Xiaomi Mi2 (aries); Oppo Find 7a/s (find7); OnePlus One (bacon)

Common: Fix VPN issues related to 4.4.3 merge

Common: Enable 'Heads Up' notification mode (Settings > Notifications)

Settings: 'Interface' replaced by 'Status Bar', 'Notification Drawer', and 'Gestures'

Settings: Moved 'Expanded Desktop' to 'Display'

Settings: Moved all lock screen related items to 'Lock Screen' and removed duplicates from 'Security'

Settings: Moved 'Navigation Bar' layout control to 'Buttons'

Trebuchet: Custom Homescreen grid size

Trebuchet: Add Protected Apps feature

Trebuchet: Add Search Panel (Google Now) option

WhisperPush: No longer ignores 'Blacklist'

Futex: Protect against Towelroot

Various small bugfixes, global and device-specific

As always, users should proceed with caution when installing custom firmware on their devices, keeping in mind that their warranties may be voided. Backing up your device is recommended. CyanogenMod installation requires root access and custom recovery software.

You can download CyanogenMod 11 here.

The Gapps Zip file for Google Play Store and Google Services can be downloaded here.

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