Android platform versions

The latest Android platform version numbers are in, and things are marching slowly along in the direction you'd expect. Jelly Bean -- which comprises Android 4.1 and 4.2 -- ticked up a few percentage points to 16.5 percent of active devices as measured over the past two weeks. (It was a 2.9 percentage point increase, to be precise.)

More: See February's version numbers

Ice Cream Sandwich fell just four-tenths of a point, and Honeycomb dropped just one-tenth of a point. Gingerbread fell 1.4 percentage points. 

Source: Android Developer Dashboard

There are 33 comments

someguy01234 says:

Don't have to worry about this too much when you have a Nexus and always the latest version. But Gingerbread is still a great OS as long as you know the right app to customize it to gain new features.

True as long as you buy a Nexus every 2 years. Gingerbread on my N1 is somewhat flaky, it reboots about once/week even though it's no longer being used as a phone.

If you add all the numbers = 100.2%

Darth Spock says:

Caused by rounding.

mwara244 says:

Still a major victory that all phones now have 42% of 4.x.x considering last july it was 8% had 4.x.x

Also 3 Nexus phones are in space, 2 Nexus S and one Nexus one, which will never be upgraded again unless the ISS has wifi and can get with in a quarter mile of them.

Darth Spock says:

The donut and eclair people need to upgrade... for seriously! That stuff is from 2010 and barely worked then! Modern apps have to slow them to a crawl, especially considering most of those devices had less than 1GB storage on board.

With as awesome as Jelly Bean is, not sure why anyone would not want it.

Jon_Doh says:

People do want it, but most phones that have the capacity to run it are not upgraded by their manufacturers. This is the great shortcoming of Android. Once a phone is out, it's forgotten for the most part in terms of updates. IOS keeps phones several generations back current with regular upgrades.

The only way for many of us to get JB is to root and it's not as easy or safe as jail breaking was on the iPhone.

joebob2000 says:

lol troll. I can't find a single factual statement in your entire post, kudos.

someguy01234 says:

Take a look in the mirror before you spout your idiocy.

brendilon says:

I wouldn't go that far. I'd say he's half-right or better on most of what he said.
Most users DO want Jellybean (if they know it exists). But I think he overestimates how many devices can run it well. A lot of devices just can't handle it. On the other hand, OEM's also are slow to update, and some never update their devices at all.

As for rooting/roming being less safe than jailbreaking, that's just false. Rooting is 100% safe. ROM's are less safe if you use an alpha or beta build, but pretty much all devices have very stable builds. No OEM will intentionally brick your phone if they find out you are rooting, unlike Apple.

mwara244 says:

I have a Verizon Gnex, but still use my D1 with froyo on wifi as a Music player, because it is 2 x louder than my gnex, and as an alarm clock.

joebob2000 says:

Only Android enthusiasts (and apparently, a stunningly large number of apple fanboys) have any idea what the difference is between froyo and jelly bean and the rest. For the masses, if their phone works they just keep using it. When it's time to upgrade they look for a bigger screen or more memory or some other flashy feature, and could care less about the OS. For the enthusiasts, there are a wealth of roms for old handsets. Somehow, the only ones hurt by the "android abandonment" are all the iphone fanboys who seem to want to make a big deal about it at every turn and probably dont even own an android device anyway. Good riddance to their trolling.

dyinman says:

Just so happens that the same percentage Android users that are on Eclair or lower is the same percentage of iOS users are on 4.x or below:


a. eclair is almost 1 year older than iOS 4.x

b. the thing you link doesn't actually show the current percent of devices running 4.x or lower. all it says is "The population below these limits was below 4% WHEN SUPPORT WAS DROPPED." that was a while ago.

c. android sucks ass when it comes to updating. here is a little example:

HTC Desire (a very popular and widely available device) came out in the summer of 2010 running android 2.1. it got an update to android 2.2 later that year and was never updated again. updating to 2.3 is possible but not supported by HTC. same story with my Droid X, it stopped getting updates before i was even able to upgrade again.

iPhone 4, also came out in the summer of 2010. still getting updates right now. last update was a few weeks ago to the latest iOS (6.1.2)

These are facts, and no matter how much anyone hates Apple, it is hard to argue that Android sucks when it comes to updating.

mwara244 says:

Android is great for updating, It is OEM's with their skinned crap on android that sucks, blur, touchpiss, and NO-Sense, are the reason why there are no updates. OEM's need to get rid of their software overlay's and just run pure android and just make all the add ons apps on their phones, and if their apps are good enough they could sell them in the play store for other devices to use and make money from them.

If each OEM would make one Nexus device a year and add it to their line up of phones they would probably sell more that their own skinned devices.

dyinman says:

Right? These people are seriously overdue for (free!) upgrades.

Though, I don't know how many people realistically target that low of a percentage.

What needs to happen is all those Evo-type devices need to be upgraded. I have high hopes for next holiday season to finally kick Gingerbread down to the teens in %.

ZachA says:

There are still so many people that are on Gingerbread. It a good version of Android but its time to move on.

sicembaylor says:

Gingerbread is going to be the XP of the Android world.

Jon_Doh says:

Gingerbread is solid, without bugs and its fast. It doesn't have the problems ICS does on some phones and it's light on the battery. You can install a launcher like Holo that will come very close to turning your phone into ICS - you keep the speed and battery life of GB, but get the advantages of ICS. This is why GB is so popular.

@ZachA: That's all well in good, but for many people who have Gingerbread, that's it for them because they can't move on. Simply put, there are most likely Smartphones and those Smartphones including my old LG Thrive that is running Frojo doesn't meet the specs needed to be upgraded to Ice Cream Sandwich, let along Jelly Bean. Plus carriers most likely aren't going to upgrade those Smartphones anymore. My upgrade stopped at Android 2.2.2. That's why I upgrade to a GNex.

Even more, consumers are still buying budget Smartphones that are running Ginderbread and most likely will never see an upgrade mainly due to the carriers not willing and of course the specs. But Ginderbread is a good version of Android OS and will be used for at least another 2-3 years.

curley says:

I still see a lot of people sporting the OG Droid. maybe they don't want to lose unlimited data LOL!

Darth Spock says:

OG droid makes nerds cry :s

orlanka says:

I've upgraded twice since they stopped the unlimited data plans with the most recent upgrade to the DNA when it launched.

shamatua says:

the people on gingerbread should root and put out roms. After all that's the beauty of Android.

jimbo says:

People on gingerbread should leave well enough alone.

Rooting and Roming is asking for trouble. Glitches here, crashes there. Bluetooth maybe, wifi questionable, gps not locking.

Gingerbread is stable and has good battery management.

Now if one likes to explore various development sites for various roms, then tinker away with your gadget.

N0sferatU524 says:

my non-tech savvy parents don't want me touching their phones. They want it left alone and happy the way it is. That would be Froyo! Anyways count me in for Jelly Bean. :)

Darth Spock says:

my wife was the same way on her old Thunderbolt. Once she got the nexus she was cool with Cyanogenmod, but we haven't moved her ROM since the 4.2.2 nightly last month.

piizzadude says:

Rooting no, roming maybe.

The two go together but not hand in hand... It more of a casual dating kinda thing.

44% still use Gingerbread. If you count Eclair and Froyo, over 50% of the market has yet to move to ICS or better.

Yet, you have major developers who are deciding to require a 4.x version or higher on their apps, often without any valid reason other than laziness in implementing Google's backward compatibility library for Holo.

(NOTE: And, despite the myth, not all phones, even some previously "high end" phones, are able to run CyanogenMod or ICS versions of CyanogenMod. And, despite the myth, not all users upgrade their phones every 6 months to 1 year anyway. And, despite the myth, people with said phones between 1-2 years old DO BUY APPS.

TheDu9du says:

Any clues as to what could be the main reason for the drop of 1% in honeycomb? I would imagine mainly that they replaced their tablet.
On other topic, I for one preferred my old galaxy s to have froyo. I liked the UI better and updating it to gingerbread didn't help me much cause the apps I games I wanted to play wouldn't play cause they were to big and crashed. Also battery was better when it had froyo. Today I sport a N4 and life is better

TheDu9du says:

Meant to delete ”apps I" for the more honest comment

JobiWan144 says:

Phil, I'm pretty sure you're missing the real story here. 4.x users now outnumber Gingerbread users (45.1% to 44.2%)! Yay! Adding in Honeycomb users, that makes 46.3% of users on 3.0+, which is required to use many new API's. In the next month or two, that number should surpass 50%. I guess these numbers go to show how well 2012 phones like the Galaxy S III have sold.

joe bebe says:

Gd job