Wileyfox, the company that sold Cyanogen OS phones, is going into administration
Wileyfox is a startup company that was created back in 2015 which provided smartphones that were affordable, good quality, and for a time, loaded with Cyanogen OS. Wileyfox was a private company which was run by previous employees from places like Kazam, HTC, and Nokia. The company was able to successfully launch three generations of devices, however, things aren’t turning out as they had expected since the company is now going into administration.
Wileyfox leapt out of the starting gate with the Wileyfox Storm and Swift. Both were mid-range devices which meant the initial investment was low, but it also means that profit margins aren’t that great either. These two devices shipped with Cyanogen OS and this relationship continued when they shipped out their second generation of devices. The Wileyfox Spark, Spark +, and Spark X were all announced in June 2016 and were either low-end or mid-range devices that had transitioned to MediaTek SoCs.
This relationship between the two companies didn’t last long though with the Wileyfox Spark 2, Wileyfox Spark 2 +, and Wileyfox Spark 2 X all going back to Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chips. This generation was also when they transitioned away from the dying Cyanogen OS to their own custom build of Android.
This is about as far as they could go though since they didn’t announce any smartphones in 2017, and now we’re learning why. Correction: Wileyfox did announce the Wileyfox Pro in 2017, a smartphone running Windows 10 Mobile.
The company is going into administration which means it is being taken under the management of a court appointed administrator. This person must be a licensed insolvency practitioner (IP) and they’re appointed by either the courts, creditors, or company directors. It should be noted that once a company goes into administration, it doesn’t mean that’s the beginning of the end of the business. If proper steps are taken then this could allow the company enough time to repay outstanding debts without being pressured by creditors.
The amount of time the process of administration takes can be anywhere from a few weeks to up to year or more as it all depends on the circumstances. This could end up in the company selling off anything of value in an attempt to pay creditors, but it could also give another company the opportunity to buy them out. OTA updates for existing smartphones have stopped (unless something drastic happens), and repairs and warranties will be up to the administrator in charge.