LineageOS Apps on F-Droid? How to modify them correctly?

Android has a big problem: it lacks a lot in some core apps.

Google stopped maintaining a lot of them and instead pushes their proprietary apps, full of creepy stuff.

SimpleMobileTools is now discontinued, Fossify took care of the apps for now, but there haven’t been new releases to my knowledge.

Also especially some Core Apps like AOSP DeskClock, Phone or Messages, may be better than the Fossify equivalent.

LineageOS has afaik recently began to update all the old apps to the new design and build configs.

LineageOS has never published APKs to my knowledge, and the issue also is that they use the com.android name. So installing them mostly does not work, as the system already has them preinstalled, and updates fail.

So for building the apps, it should just be

  1. Pull them in
  2. Modify the source so that the AppID is changed, I propose org.lineageos.APPNAME

I am not sure if LineageOS devs need to be asked before that.

And I am also not sure what parts of the apps need to be changed.

I am talking about these apps:

(These are the ones that should work as regular user apps)

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Since these are and need to be signed by the ROM key, not sure this is possible.

What are you trying to achieve exactly, updates after your ROM provider stops updates for your device?

Some of these apps are designed to be built along with the ROM so maybe some changes are needed.

It’s needed if you don’t want to maintain forks.

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I want to make the apps available to all android users. As a GrapheneOS user myself, I would at least like to try them, and maybe update the preinstalled AOSP apps on GrapheneOS

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We’ve had some discussion about Eleven (music player) a few years ago.

You probably would have to fork the apps, provide needed changes (like AppId, Fastlane, VersionCodes) and do proper releases for them to quialify to get included.

I am too a grapheneOS user and while generally I agree where you are coming from it would be nice to have these alternativeOS apps have more accessibility.

I do find myself getting by just fine with apps on F-Droid however as most of them are very good replacements to the AOSP apps

Agreed on the matter of the clock app.

Also I believe the lineageOS camera app (Aperture) does have a forked version that’s compatible with any device thanks to IodéOS. Sadly it appears they did not fork the other apps

https://raw.githubusercontent.com/iodeOS/fdroid/master/fdroid/repo?fingerprint=ec43610d9acca5d2426eb2d5eb74331930014de79d3c3acbc17dfe58aa12605f

Generally speaking, you cannot simply take built-in apps from LineageOS and use them:

  1. Those apps are designed to run on a particular version of Android, i.e. an app taken from LineageOS 21 (that’s Android 14) probably won’t work on Android 13 and lower. The app should be ported to AndroidX/Jetpack libraries and explicitly deal with Android versions differences.
  2. Apps shipped with a ROM have access to private Android APIs that are not available to regular apps. If an app uses such APIs, the appropriate functionality needs to be removed or re-implemented with public APIs.
  3. The last but not least, built-in apps don’t care about versioning. They don’t update their version codes and version names. One need to handle this to make an app installable onto other ROMs.

TL;DR apps from ROMs need to be ported to be used outside of their native ROM.

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Not sure if it is exactly the same app but maybe “close enough”? There is https://f-droid.org/packages/ws.xsoh.etar/

While somewhat old, and from FairPhone rather than Lineage, there is https://f-droid.org/en/packages/community.fairphone.clock/

F-Droid does of course have many apps in such categories as keyboards, calendars, contacts, calculators, etc, though they don’t all match the similar apps that are built in to any particular ROM. And sometimes NOT matching those is a GOOD thing.