/e/OS v2: the new version of the Google-free operating system has been released

/ e / OS

Although privacy should be a right, the truth is that we live in a stage in which privacy has become a utopia, in which personal data is "confiscated" left and right, / e / OS emerges as an oasis for those looking for a safe haven for their data on mobile devices. Version 2 of this open source Android-based operating system (specifically Lineage OS) is not just an update, but a big step forward.

In addition, this operating system is sold pre-installed on some mobile phones, if you do not want to complicate your life by installing the ROM yourself or not knowing if your device will be compatible or not. And those phones are known as Fairphone, a European brand that designs smartphones especially focused on having the minimum impact on the environment, among other things.

What is /e/OS?

In a world dominated by technology giants and where privacy seems an increasingly scarce commodity, /e/OS emerges as an alternative for Android. It is an open source system, developed mainly by Frenchman Gaël Duval, the same developer of the GNU/Linux Mandrake distro. Currently, the system is under the umbrella of the e Foundation.

/e/OS was born in 2019 as a project based on "LineageOS for MicroG", a fork of LineageOS that had aim to remove Google services and replace them with open source alternatives that respect the privacy of the user. This project quickly gained popularity among the privacy-conscious community, leading to its official relaunch as /e/OS in 2020. Since then, the project has grown exponentially, gaining a strong user base and a team of dedicated developers. who work hard to improve the experience with each new version.

Instead of GMS (Google Mobile Services) that comes preinstalled on most Android devices, /e/OS uses MicroG as a base service framework. MicroG offers the same essential functionality as GMS, such as contact and calendar synchronization, but without the invasive data collection and tracking associated with Google services. On the other hand, geolocation has also been replaced by Mozilla Localization Service.

/e/OS also includes a custom app store called Aurora Store, which offers a wide range of open source and privacy-friendly applications. Additionally, users can install apps from other sources, such as F-Droid, giving them full control over the apps they use on their devices. Of course, you can install native Android apps, as it is supported, although if any app depends exclusively on Google services, it may not work.

The project calls itself Google-less, that is, they intend to “Ungoogize” The operating system. However, it is true that in the new v2 version we still depend on Google Maps in Android Auto, but the truth is that most of the apps and services that Google has pre-installed on official Android have been eliminated, and that they have many of trackers that violate user privacy, collecting data and sending telemetry to the company.


  • There are no pre-installed Google apps, which protects your data from being collected.
  • Google search is replaced by a privacy-focused metasearch engine.
  • MicroG provides basic functionalities without compromising privacy, replacing GMS as I said before.
  • Location services are based on Mozilla Localization Services, in addition to GPS (or other systems supported by the device).
  • It does not rely on Google servers for connectivity, time or DNS checks. This is done independently of the Alphabet company.

What is included within GMS?

For those who still don't know what it is GMS or Google Mobile Services, this is a pack that includes Google on all Android devices and is made up of the following apps:

  • Play Store: Google's official app store for Android, where you can download and install apps, games, music, movies, and e-books.
  • Gmail: Google's free email service.
  • Google Maps: Google maps and navigation application.
  • YouTube and YouTube Music: video and music platform.
  • Google Chrome: Google web browser.
  • Google Drive: Google cloud storage service.
  • Google Calendar: Google calendar to manage your events and appointments.
  • Google Photos: app to manage and share Google photos.
  • Google Play Music: Google music streaming service.
  • Google Assistant: A virtual assistant from Google that can help you with a variety of tasks, such as setting alarms, making calls, and playing music, with just voice commands.

On the other hand, the GMS package also includes the following services:

  • Google Play Services: A set of APIs that allow developers to create applications that integrate with Google services.
  • Google Account Services: Services that allow you to manage your Google Account, such as signing in, changing your password, and accessing your privacy settings.
  • Google Location Services: allow applications to determine your location, to be geolocated.
  • Google SafetyNet: A set of security services that help protect your device from malware and other threats.
  • Google Cloud Messaging: Cloud messaging that allows applications to send and receive messages.

All of this is what /e/OS has tried to replace…

/e/OS v2: what's new

La e Foundation has just released a major update for its popular mobile operating system, /e/OS v2. This new version focuses on keeping your data safe while offering interesting features such as Android Auto support and a built-in “Wall of Shame” system to expose apps that compromise privacy.

The project has grown significantly, with support for more than 200 devices (both official and unofficial). There is even a company called Murena that sells smartphones pre-installed with e/OS and offers additional cloud services, so the ecosystem now on /e/OS is richer than when the project started, where there were still things to polish and that They didn't work at all.

As for the what's new in /e/OS v2, we have to highlight:

  • A "Wall of Shame" that exposes the applications with the worst privacy practices so that the user is aware that they are going to use an insecure app.
  • Advanced privacy settings give you more control over your data.
  • Updated launcher with new features like live wallpapers and better notifications, offering a better user experience than the previous version.
  • Android Auto compatibility (although it still uses Google Maps for now, as I mentioned, although there could be substitutes in the future).
  • QR code reading integrated into the camera application.
  • More stable file syncing with the updated eDrive.
  • Some bugs have also been fixed and optimized.

There are over 250 devices supported by /e/OS, but support levels may vary. You can install it yourself on most devices or purchase a Murena Fairphone smartphone with /e/OS preinstalled. Murena also offers a cloud service called Murena Cloud for email, contacts and other functions, which is not bad at all…

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