Ever since they promised to help developers and slow the growing problem of Android fragmentation, Google has been quite consistent in updating their platform version chart, which shows how many phones are running each version of Android. Just over a month ago, the chart was used in the argument that fragmentation is a major problem for Android, as Android 2.1 was running on a much smaller percentage of phones than previous versions Android 1.6 and 1.5. However, last month, Eclair finally took over, becoming the most used single version of Android (1.5 and 1.6 still accounted for a larger total share).
This update is an even bigger milestone for Google: the latest version of Android is now on par with the combined use of 1.5 and 1.6 – at this rate, the next time the chart updates, we should finally see 2.1 as the most used version of Android. We suspect that this change has to do with a few high profile 2.1 rollouts (the HTC and Samsung Moment saw the official 2.1 releases hit stateside), as well as an increase in devices that are hitting the market with 2.1 pre-installed. Unfortunately, despite the growth of 2.1, this still means that 50% of users are using either 1.5 or 1.6, so there’s still a ways to go before we can reasonably say that fragmentation has been beat.
It will be interesting to see how the upcoming release of Android 2.2 (Froyo) will affect this chart. Though Google can update the Nexus One as quickly as they want, it will still take time for the device manufacturers to push out their customized updates.
Source: Android Platform Versions