It’s interesting to have a look back at our past year roadmap: most of the features we announced are either done or close to be completed, which is not too bad! The two things that show very little progress are the Smart Assistant project, and the energy efficiency project.
For others items, we have started to introduce better compatibility with Android applications (SafetyNet support), first for the stable devices, and later, progressively, for as many supported smartphones as possible.
We will also soon be offering a much larger and transparent access to mobile applications, with our new application installer called “App Lounge”. On this aspect, even if we didn’t have a single case of tampered application during the past three years, we’re progressively abandoning our dependency to the “CleanAPK” service. CleanAPK is still going to be used momentarily for the catalog of apps coming from F-Droid and Progressive Web Apps, but will be totally abandoned this year.
Our new Application Installer: App Lounge
We are also finalizing the integration of our “Privacy Central” application (that won’t be called like this): it is going to offer sophisticated features related to tracker management, and other cool features…
/e/OS’ new Privacy app
Other features that should arrive soon include:
- a new “BlissLauncher”, rewritten from scratch. It will be smoother to use and more stable.
- a new “eDrive” service, that helps synchronizing documents, pictures and videos to the user’s private cloud. It will introduce instant synchronization and be more reliable.
- a better link between /e/OS and the cloud. A widget will first show how much online storage remains available and progressively introduce additional features.
And of course, we are still improving the user interface and more generally the user experience of /e/OS and the cloud: we now have a dedicated team of experienced and enthusiastic designers and graphic designers for this. I’m pretty confident that Murena users are going to be impressed by what they see in the product sooner or later this year.
Although much of our development efforts go to /e/OS, which is a complex piece of software that must run on 250 different pieces of hardware, we have started to add a lot of additional resources to improve our online services, starting with the cloud. It will enjoy a full UI revamping, and progressively add new features. The reason behind this, is that we think that a credible and private cloud is bringing a lot of value to /e/OS users, by letting them synchronize online and manage their documents without compromising their data.
The new cloud user interface: work in progress from the design team!
Document editing in the cloud.
Some other progresses are already there, like with our metasearch engine “spot”, that is serving better results and is now more reliable than in its early days.
In terms of infrastructure, we’re also making it more reliable, scalable and secure, with a dedicated team and more servers. We are also making plans to add regional clusters that will make online services more performant for users not located in Europe.
A great feature for this year is also going to be the introduction of a “Single Sign On” feature, that will make easier the use of our various online services by using a single account instead of several ones. It will be a good opportunity to introduce the new @murena.io domain alias, that users can use as an alternative to their @e.email address.
All put together, this should make it possible to release a V1 this year. It will be a big achievement for our project, that will celebrate its 5th birthday at the end of 2022! The time of maturity has arrived.
One of the challenges we still face is to be able to fix bugs (new bugs, old bugs, regressions…) in a timely manner. For this, we rely on our team of developers, of course, but also on the community of users and contributors. We have also recently opened a “bug bounty program” that hopefully will accelerate bug fixing.
In 2022, we are also going to start working on “End-to-end encryption” for the cloud services, as we got some financial support to develop this. And we are starting a new project to review and improve accessibility in /e/OS and our online services.
We are cooperating closer with our hardware partners, Fairphone and Teracube, in the EU and in the USA, to optimize /e/OS on their smartphones, and to add new models to the Murena catalog.
We are also seriously considering introducing our own smartphone this year… Stay tuned!
Those three values are the pillars of our project, made for humans, by humans. It’s important to remind them:
Privacy: we believe that people have the right to have products and services that protect their data and offer them privacy by design, by opposition to privacy as a choice or even no privacy at all.
Facts: we support facts over claims. We are open source, because it’s the only way to offer true auditability of what happens in /e/OS and in the cloud (and /e/OS has been recognized for its privacy).
Sustainable development: we think that people deserve better digital products and services, with a reduced environmental footprint. We make it possible by extending the smartphone’s life with an up to date operating system, and because reduced data consumption results into decreased energy usage.
March 17th 2022
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