Latest Android Platform Stats: KitKat Nearly 25%, 2.x Down to 12%

Latest Android Platform Stats: KitKat Nearly 25%, 2.x Down to 12%

As we’ve by now become accustomed, the beginning of the month marks when Google updates its Android Developer Dashboard website with updated Platform Distribution Stats. These numbers, which show the current state of Android ecosystem fragmentation both in terms of version/API adoption and graphics capabilities, become an incredibly valuable resource for Android application developers looking to better target their development efforts.

When we took a look at the Android Platform Stats back in August, we were pleased to see that KitKat was finally over 20% market share. Android 4.4.x KitKat was up to 20.9% from 17.9% the month before, resulting in a 16.8% relative growth. Just like what we’ve seen in previous months, Android 2.x had been hovering in at over 10% of end user devices. However, for the first time in recent memory, this number has dropped somewhat significantly to 12.1%. Perhaps we can finally conclude that (some of) these people who are still running extremely old devices are no longer seemingly as content with slow and outdated devices.

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Now, we are continuing to see a positive growth in KitKat market share. And for the first time in several months, the rate of adoption has actually grown (slightly) from the previous month. This is likely due to a last, final push by OEMs and carriers to roll out KitKat updates before Android L is officially released in the coming month or so. This month, Android 4.4.x KitKat saw a 17.2% relative growth, leading to a total of 24.5% of active installs. And as we mentioned before, Android 2.x is hanging strong at 12.1%. This is down from 14.3% last month, and it represents a 15.4% relative drop. And for those who remember last month’s anomaly where 2.x actually “grew,” this is more than welcome progress in the right direction.

Now that we’ve been watching KitKat’s adoption grow over time, we can safely conclude that as always, KitKat is on the rise. We first saw a rather meteoric rise, which tempered off for a few months as a higher percentage of devices that would receive the update actually received it. Now, that decline in growth rate has leveled off, leaving us with slightly higher relative growth this month than last month. Android 2.x is still holding strong, but for the first time in quite a long time, we actually see a noticeable 15.4% relative drop in adoption down to 12.1%. Hopefully this trend continues and this is not some kind of sampling artifact. Android 4.x Ice Cream Sandwich and 4.1-4.3 Jelly Bean saw somewhat noticeable declines as well.

In addition to version stats, the Android Developer Dashboard also reports information regarding screen size and resolution, as well as max supported OpenGL version. This can be seen below:

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This month, we are happy to report progress both in terms of Android 4.4 growth and Android 2.x decline. It’s great to see the latest (official) versions of Android make their way to more and more devices. But folks, remember that we are just a month or two away from the official release of Android L, when this cycle will undoubtedly repeat once again.

Do you think Android L adoption will mirror what we’ve seen in the past, or will Google’s focus on optimizing resources help it reach older devices? Leave us your thoughts in the comments below!

[Source: Android Developer Dashboard]

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