Latest Android stats out

Android users take bite into Ice Cream Sandwich, Gingerbread still dominates

Chris Mayer
Android-Fragmentation

The latest Android stats won’t do much to ease fragmentation critics – with Ice Cream Sandwich making little headway, and latest version Jelly Bean barely registering

The latest
Android distribution stats
from Google will do
little to fan the flames from ardent fragmentation critics, with
Ice Cream Sandwich numbers still flagging.

They’ll probably try to pass it off as differentiation, but
the figures are telling. Android 2.3, aka
Gingerbread
, still holds the lion’s
share,
 running on
60.6% of total Android-running devices.

Quite a lot further down the line, we have Ice Cream
Sandwich
with 15.9%. Although technically
gaining some ground
- this figure rising
5% in the past month -
it’s nowhere near the level Google envisaged almost a year on
from releasing the version.

It had high hopes, but seemingly not enough manufacturers are
placing their faith in version. So does the blame lie ?
Google
, for making it hard for mobile
makers to upgrade to the latest flashy version, consequently
delaying upgrades for customers? Or with
handset
manufacturers
for just not showing enough interest?
When you know there’s an update just round the corner, why bother
with the effort?

Jelly Bean, unveiled at the recent Google I/O developer
conference
, has amassed just 0.8% so
far,
though to be fair it’s only
available to run on a few select smartphones
like the
Galaxy Nexus and tablet like Nexus
7. 
While only a minor update from
ICS, this is much more encouraging to see after a short amount of
time. Again, this raises the question, why both with ICS when Jelly
Bean is here?

Contrast this with the walled garden world of Apple, where
they recently revealed at
their Worldwide Developers
Conference in June that 80% of their devices ran the latest iOS 5,
and
the disadvantages of Google’s open policy become
clear
.

Android is in a rut – at least in attaining the numbers they
want from Ice Cream Sandwich. New features are being developed, but
not seen. Malware is becoming ever more rampant, despite

best efforts. They clearly need to exert some
pressure on mobile manufacturers to update
archaic
Android versions present on their phones, if developing for Android
is going to continue to be lucrative.

On a positive sidenote for Ice Cream Sandwich -
the
Razrdroid project
, part of the Raspberry Pi
foundation
, have got the credit card
sized computer to run Android 4.0, bar some sound barriers. We’ll
be interested to see what this leads to. Although no code is
available just yet, check out the soundless video below to see it
in action.

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