Here’s one major change coming down the road: long-term support (LTS) for Linux kernels is being reduced from six to two years.[…]
Why? Simple, Corbet explained: “There’s really no point to maintaining it for that long because people are not using them.” I agree. While I’m sure someone out there is still running 4.14 in a production Linux system, there can’t be many of them.
Another reason, and a far bigger problem than simply maintaining LTS, according to Corbet, is that Linux code maintainers are burning out. It’s not that developers are a problem. The last few Linux releases have involved an average of more than 2,000 programmers — including about 200 new developers coming on board — working on each release. However, the maintainers — the people who check the code to see if it fits and works properly — are another matter.
The longer LTS support windows were put in place mostly for embedded devices, and as Ars Technica explains, it’s Android in particular that is affected by this change.