Once again and right on time, Google has released Platform Distribution numbers for Android, this time for the month of October. The numbers still show Gingerbread holding on at just over 54%, but Jelly Bean is gaining a little more ground at 2.7%, up 0.9% over the previous month.


Again, the Gingerbread/Jelly Bean numbers are a bit disappointing considering the extremely small change from the previous cycle (a change of less than 1% for each), but it's worth noting that these numbers will (hopefully) be helped along by updates rumored to be coming soon (or those that just arrived).

Android's other iterations are still marching along on a predictable trajectory – Ice Cream Sandwich is up to 25.8% from 23.7% last time, Honeycomb is basically the same, with just a 0.1% change for API level 13, and likewise pre-2.3 releases are steadily dropping off (though slower than we may like).

With the new pie chart, we of course always get a new historical distribution chart – a handy visual representation of the steady growth and decline of Android's respective builds, shown old to new, top to bottom.


For more handy and interesting numbers, just check out the full report below.

Source: Android Developer Dashboard

Liam Spradlin
Liam loves Android, design, user experience, and travel. He doesn't love ill-proportioned letter forms, advertisements made entirely of stock photography, and writing biographical snippets.

  • Tim Peyton

    The biggest reason why, IMO, Gingerbread numbers are still high is because a lot of us are still stuck on what's left of our 2 year contracts with phones that came out just before ICS, or just abandoned after release.

    • http://www.facebook.com/YAYSAVERGN Eric James Salcido

      I would think it's because with Android phones, you get a wide variety of options and sizes and features, and some people get the free Android phones or the cheapy $50 ones, which no longer have any real support. My father has this... I don't even know what to call it, cheap LG Android with a weak processor and crap screen. He got it because it was free and he signed up for his contract less than 6 months ago. He likes Android enough to get a phone with the OS, but not enough to drop a few hundred on the latest and greatest which will most likely be updated to at least ICS, if not JB.

      • Tim Peyton

        I have the G2x, which was the T-Mobile flagship in Spring 2011. It still contends with mid-rangeish phones today in terms of hardware. Unfortunately, LG and T-Mob saw fit to drop it like a bad habit a few months after release. Still stuck on GB. Might pick up the N4 once I see some reviews.

    • infogulch

      Hopefully they will all go for the Nexus 4 when they get off contract. That would be incredibly awesome for the Android world. The whole market saturated with the single best phone in existence? I think yes.

      • ssj4Gogeta

        That would be so awesome, but it's highly unlikely.

        • Randall Walsh

          True. Most Android users do not know or care what they are running as long as the phone does what they want it to do. And the Nexus was never meant to be a major seller but an alternative to carrier branded phones and a pure Google experience for those who wanted it. Nexus owners are a very,very small percentage of Android users. But a percentage I am proud to be part of.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Phillip-Martin/100000077199240 Phillip Martin

        That could only happen if Google gets the Nexus 4 into the carriers stores and thats not going to happen.

  • Nathan

    I want my Jelly Bean on my Verizon Samsung Galaxy S3

    • http://wodtracker.net/ acedanger

      I thought you were supposed to be getting that last month o_O

  • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

    Curious to see where 4.2 will be a few months after the Nexuses launch. Probably still at 0.5% by January (for December stats) :S

    Really surprised to see Gingerbread stay up there this steadily - looks like it's going to be a problem for a while with the millions of low to mid range devices that are still perfectly usable, yet will never be upgraded.

    • lbrfabio

      "millions of low to mid range devices that are still perfectly usable, yet will never be upgraded"

      And not only because of the lack of ICSJB upgrade but bcause a lot of them don't want to update or don't even know there iswhat is an update :S

      • btod

        Or manufacturers deciding not to update them. There are phone that came out this year even with gingerbread and wont see an upgrade. Considering they signed two year contracts, its going to be a while before phones gingerbread numbers get higher than ics or jelly bean.

        • GraveUypo

          i think you mean lower

          • btod

            corrected, thanks

      • http://twitter.com/Codexx Cody Curry

        There's clearly a reason Froyo dropped off the map. A lot of phones got the "small" update to 2.3, but phones two years ago ran Froyo out the gate. Once Christmas hits, we're going to see Gingerbread take a huge hit. It'll help that most people running Froyo might be on their first Android device.

    • http://twitter.com/HELIO5ai HELIO5ai

      I think it has a lot to do with people that have older/lower-end devices that haven't upgraded yet or don't feel the need to upgrade. My gf is still on gingerbread even though I show her all the cool things on my Gnex. She doesn't see a need to upgrade. Her phone works well enough and all her apps still work. We'll see Gingerbread go down as time goes on. Sadly though, this may be the case forever with the majority of users being 2 versions back since Google doesn't have control over updates. Unfortunately, only Android fanboys/girls like us really care about this.

      • http://resaberz.blogspot.com/ Rebornyama

        Well it doesn't even have to be a lower and device. More like some kind of carriers and manufacturers BS to tell ppl to buy new phones and extend their contract. My Infuse 4g with its one core and less than 1gb of RAM runs JB (and games like shadowgun) smoothly, and if I were to wait for ATT to release official updates, I'd still be waiting for my GB.

    • infogulch

      Maybe the super cheap Nexus 4 will persuade some people who are holding out. As long as carriers are *sane* about how they price it. *cough*tmobileiscrazy*cough*

      • LiamBryant

        It would also help circulation of the new OS (in the US anyway) if Google had made the N4 available on more than one carrier. I know why they did it, but I still think it's a poor move and severely limits the number of people who can have access to such an amazing device.

        • http://twitter.com/HELIO5ai HELIO5ai

          That's why Samsung is so dominant. While Moto and HTC are releasing a phone on 1 or 2 carriers, Samsung releases the same phone on all.

          • perfectlyreasonabletoo

            Just buy an Optimus G, it'll get updates about the same speed as a Verizon or Sprint "Nexus".

          • Simon Belmont

            Yeah. Perfect solution.

            Because the crowd that wants a Nexus 4 will definitely have no qualms with the locked bootloader on the Optimus G. /s.

        • http://twitter.com/Codexx Cody Curry

          The GSM networks are the mid-sized carriers. The fact that you can buy it unlocked means it will work on AT&T, even if you only can get it with a contract on T-Mobile.

    • anamika

      Lots of low end $100 mobiles sold in india are gingerbread. Most of people who buy them won't be much concerned about ICS.

  • nsnsmj

    I really wish Gingerbread would just hurry up and die off. Compared to ICS/JB, it's pretty horrible.

    Edit: Holy crap. There are still 12% of people on Froyo. That's bad too. One thing this also proves is that normal consumers don't care about updates at all. On the somewhat bright side, 4.x makes up almost 30%.

  • Peterson Silva

    Low-end devices that are simply forgotten by manufacturers make up for a lot of Gingerbread devices... Heck, I still have a Froyo device.

  • infogulch

    I would **really** like to see that distribution chart all the way back to cupcake. Please, Google?

    • TylerChappell

      There would basically be no point because of how narrow it would be. My guess is you would just have to find the same charts from the earlier days of android when anything pre-froyo was actually relevant.
      I am not surprised at Froyo's number because a lot of the smaller carriers still sell froyo phones to those on a budget. A girl in one of my classes had a flip phone from Tracphone that stopped working, and so me and my friend convinced her she should try to get a low-end smartphone with a cheap plan and she got some $80 phone with Straight Talk (owned by Tracphone, and sold in Walmart) and it is running Froyo. I think it is the "Samsung Galaxy Precedent" Sure, it's a crappy phone but she was very budget limited for both the phone and the data plan so it works for her, and now she has wonderful new things like checking email and Google Maps

      • John O’Connor

        well, this travesty sets a horrible "precedent" for the galaxy moniker

  • Peterson Silva

    Am I the only one who keeps waiting for that 0.1% cupcake to simply cease to exist? =P

    • fixxmyhead

      i know huh. who the fuck is still using a g1 as a real phone. actually a couple months ago i saw some mexican guy at taco bell still using one. i was like oh snaps is that a g1

      • Simon Belmont

        The G1 should be on 1.6 Donut actually. That was the last release it got from Google.

        Maybe a few HTC Hero and myTouch phones didn't grab the 2.1 update? A lot on 1.5 are probably cheap craplets from Asia.

    • defred34

      My mom uses donut. She wanted a really cheap touchscreen phone, so she could touch numbers to dial. Otherwise, she doesn't need anything better.

      • Romeo

        Your mom sounds hot 【ツ】

    • TylerChappell

      There's actually quite a few of them I imagine. Several weeks ago I was on a bus with a kid that had an HTC Rezound, and I noticed he was still running Gingerbread even though the ICS update had been out for over a month. So naturally, I couldn't resist bringing it to his attention. Not only that, this kid told me he had eagerly been waiting for the ICS update. When he went to check for the update, it was already downloaded to his phone and probably was just sitting there for the past few weeks and immediately began installing.
      I bet if you took all of the phones that havent been updated yet from GB to ICS, it would probably change these numbers by about at least 5%. Just a guess though.

      • Simon Belmont

        Ain't this the truth. I've run into several people that didn't even know they had an update waiting for them.

        I've done OTAs, on the spot, for quite a few people. One person I did that TWICE for her phone. Her Fascinate went from 2.1 to 2.2. Months later she, again, didn't realize she had 2.3 waiting.

      • Bruno Pedro

        you are doing gods work son

  • bnpoteet94

    I noticed one of my friends had a Galaxy S2 that was still running gingerbread, so I updated it for her today. I wonder how many people there are out there that could have a more recent OS, but don't.

  • dtwisted

    I think the worst statistic here is that more than one in ten users are still on Froyo.
    I think the attitude towards Android is negative from many average users just because they're on something pre 4.0.

  • defred34

    Whaaat? Only 1/4 of Android users on an Android OS released within the past year. Thats awful. Apple gets most of its users to switch over to the latest OS flawlessly!!!

    • JS_215

      It's because Apple has like 4 devices and specifically make the updates to run on them. With Android there are multiple devices and it is up to the manufacture to decide whether or not the update their phones and the carrier will decide when the update goes out. It sucks but it is true.

    • John O’Connor

      Apple?? and do you seriously think that the latest iOS (not watered down) makes it to all iDevices? Let's not try to confuse the issue. At least when Android OEMs put out an update it includes all features of the OS

  • master94

    Who cares, fragmentation is not a problem. Android apps made for 1.6 will run on 4.1, unlike ios apps that need to be re-written for each update.

    • perfectlyreasonabletoo

      You smoked the whole bag, didn't you?

      • Androidandwp7equalsPower

        Why is this being down voted, when it is completely true? Fragmentation really is not a problem. Sure apps will look ugly but they run unlike ios, and this is coming from a guy who makes apps for all three major mobile OS.

  • kelly mullenax

    I would think Google needs to step in and make all phones pure android no overlays.....make moto blurr, touchwiz, sense etc a downloaded option. Phones would stay up to date easier make security app development a whole lot easier

    • perfectlyreasonabletoo

      And also they should cure cancer.

  • Kent Andersen

    To that 1 person still using cupcake.... its time. Put down your phone. Get a new one.

    • TylerChappell

      It's probably not even a phone. It's probably one of those crappy sub-$100 tablets from Toys-R-Us from a year ago.

  • Ittiam

    80% of phones and tablets sold in emerging markets still has Gingerbread out of the box, with no upgrade plan... Unless that changes Gingerbread is going nowhere and probably may even increase...

    Samsung has said that soon they will shift most of their portfolio from GB to ICS/JB... but I think that 'soon' is not gonna be anytime soon

  • GazaIan

    Ouch, that's not good. Meh, don't care though, I'm running Jellybean 4.1.2, thank you Cyanogenmod :)

    • trozero

      See, this. I had ICS on my fascinate before I upgraded and have 4.1.2 on my S3, I know for the average user's perception of ANdroid, it is important to get their phones updated so they can see how awesome Android is. But the OS is available for most phones for most users. And if someone buys a cheap ass device that is still onc Froyo, they probably don't care enough to notice the difference.

  • DannyBiker

    Honestly, this is why I'm moving to WP8 partially. My Atrix is stuck with Gingergread, a Google's move. That's it Google, keep your Nexi, I'm not your sheep anymore.

  • hanspeide

    Keep in mind that these are _global_ statistics. In Norway > 4.x accounts for ~70%, and 2.3 is at ~28%.

    Wish Google would post statistics per country, continent and global.

  • Simon Belmont

    Ha. A lot of MVNOs still sell Gingerbread handsets new.

    IMO, at this point, all new handsets should be running ICS at a minimum. A friend of mine just bought a 2.3 handset on Net10 because he needed an emergency phone until he could get a replacement for his main phone.

  • Asphyx

    That 1% uptick in JB is kind of a testament to just how slow the upgrade cycles are in Androidland.
    I bet just about all of that 1% is due to Nexus 7 sales not actual migration from earlier OS'
    And I'm willing to bet there are more custom roms making Jelly Bean available than actual Manufacturer updates.

  • Matt

    i cant believe 2.3 is still dominant, what will google ever do to get these updates out? i know its the carriers and not google but they have to find some way to remedy the situation

  • Johnny

    that one guy on cupcake

    come on dude

  • Minns

    Make a chart by brands

  • KABO

    for the galaxy S2, Gingerbread was the best! I regret ever going ICS, the wifi opens up in 6-7 seconds while it used to open in less than a second, wifi sometimes freezes the phone, plus sometimes the whole phone gets too slow for no reason... I MISS GINGERBREAD !!!