May 3rd, 2016

Android Platform Distribution May 2016

Android Platform Distribution numbers have been updated for the month of May. A way for developers to figure out which Android versions they want to target with their apps, we basically use them as a progress report of sorts, monitoring the current state of Android as it relates to updating devices to the most current versions.

This month, Marshmallow is now up to 7.5% while Lollipop still occupies the biggest slice of the pie at 35.6%. Last month we saw Marshmallow running on only 4.6% of active devices (those that have recently used the Google Play Store) and while it was almost double that of the previous month, it still seems to be getting off to a slower start than Lollipop did the same time last year.

By comparison, Lollipop was already running on 9% of Android devices during this same time last year, so Marshmallow still has some catching up to do (keep in mind the number of active Android devices is always growing). While it’s easy to compare numbers like this against something like iOS, remember that these percentages are much higher on Google-controlled Nexus devices. Because Android is open source, manufacturers are free to do what they will with the OS as it runs on their devices, even if it means dragging their feet when it comes to updates.

Google IO 2016 is around the corner and we’ll be interested to see what tricks Google has up their sleeve to address Android’s longstanding fragmentation issue.

[Android Developers]