CyanogenMod 7.2 Release Candidate 1 is now available for dozens of Android phones and tablets. CyanogenMod is a custom ROM that replaces the software that came with your device, adding new features and performance tweaks.
CM 7.2 is based on Google Android 2.3.7 Gingerbread. Work is already underway on CyanogenMod 9, which is based on Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, but CM7 is capable of running on far more devices since older phones can generally run Android 2.3 better than Android 4.0.
So if you’re using a Droid Eris, Motorola Cliq, HTC Desire, or any of 67 older devices, including the Barnes & Noble NOOK Color tablet, CyanogenMod 7.2 should run well on your device. More devices are officially supported in this release than ever before.
Some of the new features added since version 7.1 include software that’s been backported from including transition effects, rotation effects, telephony fixes and updated graphics. The thing I’ve noticed most since upgrading is that the new transitions make my phone feel much faster simply because switching from one app to another happens much more quickly.
Other changes include a number of bug fixes, support for recent devices with TI OMAP3 and OMAP4 processors, and new lockscreen styles.
You can find the latest CyanogenMod build for your device at the download page. You’ll need to root your device and install a custom bootloader such as ClockworkMod to install the software, which will probably void your warranty, so don’t expect any support from your phone manufacturer or wireless carrier if you do this. But there’s a pretty strong developer/user community.