Google has released the official statistics regarding the usage of the various versions of Android. Continuing the trend spotted in the previous month’s report, those devices that are running Android 4.3 Jelly Bean and Android 4.4 KitKat are on the rise. Like the last report, most Android devices are running a version of Jelly Bean. Beginning April 2013, the distribution data charts are now based on the data collected from each device when the user visits the Google Play store. Google also stopped including Android 1.6 Donut and Android 2.1 Eclair in the data, as it is gathered from the new version of Google Play store app, which supports Android 2.2 and above.
Google announced Android 4.4 KitKat update late in November last year for their Nexus devices, but most other players, like Samsung, Sony and LG still have not released the Android 4.4 updates for their devices. Industry analysts say that the upgrades will start rolling in within the first quarter this year.
However now, according to monthly Android distribution numbers, KitKat has increased its share to 1.4 percent of all Android devices. This is a 0.3 percent increase from the previous month, where it was 1.1 percent.
Incidentally version 4.3 of the Android OS platforms, Jelly Bean, also continues to gain ground. It can stem from the fact that the new 4.4 upgrade has not yet come on most Android devices except the Nexus devices. The current share of the Android 4.1.x Jelly Bean-powered devices is 35.9 percent (interestingly, dropping from 37.4 percent the previous month). The two new versions of the Jelly Bean, 4.2 and 4.3 grew by 2.5 percent each bringing the grand total of Android 4.x.x to 59.1 percent. This is a growth of 4.6 percent compared to the previous month, where it was 54.5 percent.
Android 2.2 Froyo, 2.3 Gingerbread, and 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich on the other hand, are losing shares as predicted. All three versions dropped their cut in the overall distribution. Gingerbread and Ice Cream Sandwich were the biggest losers with 2.9 percent and 1.7 percent drops respectively, which is actually more than they lost last month, hinging at updates intensifying. Curiously, Android 3.2 Honeycomb is still refusing to disappear form the map. The tablet-only Android version continues to sit on a 0.1 percent share – it has been there for a few months now.
It’s worth pointing out that the total sample excludes forked variants of Android (the ones on Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablets) and variants in China that don’t include Google services.