In 2007, the LKDDb project has been started to build a comprehensive database of hardware and protocols known by Linux kernels. The database is built automatically by static analysis of the kernel sources. Later in 2014, the Linux Hardware project was launched to automatically collect a database of all tested hardware configurations with the help of users of various Linux distributions.
This means that any drivers written for Android hardware platforms, can not get merged into the main kernel tree because they have dependencies on code that only lives in Google's kernel tree, causing it to fail to build in the kernel.org tree. Because of this, Google has now prevented a large chunk of hardware drivers and platform code from ever getting merged into the main kernel tree. Effectively creating a kernel branch that a number of different vendors are now relying on. 2b1af7f3a8