One last look at Jelly Bean’s dominance before KITKAT arrives


Google has updated the world on Android distribution numbers for the two-week period ending November 1st (which, if you didn’t already know, was the day immediately following the announcement of Android 4.4 KITKAT and the Nexus 5). So how do the numbers stack up before the first taste of chocolate begins to trickle onto the scene?

android numbers

Jelly Bean is still dominating the charts with a commanding lead over all the rest. It accounts for 52.1% of all Android devices that checked into the Google Play Store over the past two weeks. Of course, that statistic can be a tad misleading — a vast majority of those check-ins were on Android 4.1.x (37.3%), while 4.2.x (12.5%) and 4.3 (2.3%) lagged behind.


While the differences between those three revisions of Jelly Bean aren’t huge, it’s still alarming that only 2.3% of people were on the absolute latest version. That said, it is still an improvement over the 1.5% it had the last time Google updated us on these stats. The slight bump can be credited to companies like HTC and Samsung getting their flagship handsets upgraded to Android 4.3 starting in the past few weeks, and by launching their latest smartphones with the OS.

Moving on, we are a bit saddened to see that Gingerbread and Froyo still take up a combined 28% of the pie. We’re not sure which handsets are still keeping those versions’ heads above water, but it’s no less frustrating that it’s taking this long for legacy versions to die. We aren’t quite as saddened about the fact that Ice Cream Sandwich still has 19.8%, but old is old.

We should see KITKAT represented on this chart by the time the next update comes around, but history tells us we should expect adoption rates to be quite slow to start. Have you gotten upgraded to Android 4.3 or higher yet?

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. Well, if Samsung is to be believed, my note 2 should be updated to 4.3 before the end of the year.

    Hurry up Sammy, I want me some lockscreen widgets.

  2. I’m a bit surprised with the use of “dominant” anywhere near this story.

    1. Maybe it’s in an ironic way? :P

  3. Its not that bad since about 70% of devices are running android 4.0+ which will make the jobs of developers a lot easier and encourage more holo UI apps.

  4. damn gingerbread needs to go away

  5. Almost all the Prepaid carriers are pushing out Gingerbread devices……Just take a look at Straight talk or Net10, most of there phones are Gingerbread. Until they start pushing newer phones Gingerbread will still see a big share.

    1. Hopefully with kit-kat’s optimization, phone manufacturers will be able to skip ICS and JB and load kit-kat onto these lower end devices.

    2. same here in Canada. Some Koodo and TELUS prepaids are all on Gingerbread, Huawei Ascend Y210, Samsung Galaxy Ace, some LG phone.

    3. I am so glad boost mobile is selling all 4.0+ devices and phased out all their 2.3 devices. My HTC one about is on 4.1.2 with 4.2 coming at some point down the road according to rumors

  6. My mid- to low-range Samsung S3 Mini started on 4.1 not long after that version was released. So it was up to date for about five minutes. I don’t expect it to be updated beyond 4.2; it probably won’t even get that. The phone’s only been out about a year.

    Maybe the manufacturers should build phones they can keep up to date for a year or two, instead of giving up on them after six months. Or make rooting easier.

    1. lesson of the day: you cant buy a non-flagship and expect flagship level support

      1. This so much. It’s common knowledge that flagships gain priority support. You should have known that when you bought the phone.

  7. Might want to update that page for the Nexus5 before you link to it again. “The next Nexus handset — known as the Nexus 5 — hasn’t been announced yet, but rumor has it LG will be reprising its role as the manufacturer.”

  8. Here’s an easy article for ya…

    How do the charts look here vs. when JB, ICS, and GB were announced? (I know the reporting methods have changed, but some comparison can still be made.)

  9. The older versions are still around because some of us spend our money wisely. If I hadn’t gotten my current phone for free. I’d still be on my old incredible which still works perfectly well and upgrading the os on it would just slow it down to much.

  10. still stuck on 4.1.2 :(

  11. I’ll just go from 4.2.2 to 4.4. Can’t be bothered with 4.3. I don’t think Google should’ve released it as a separate version of Jelly Bean. Didn’t have THAT much over 4.2.2.

  12. i’m thinking 4.3 has had the shorted life of any version so far? should be interesting to see how much goes straight from 4.0, .1, and .2, to 4.4 bypassing 4.3 completely

  13. Have been enjoying 4.3 for almost a month now. Look forward to a speedy release of 4.4

  14. Sammy says the s3 gets 4.3 this month but we’ll see

  15. nobody on Cupcake or Donut?

    1. I think they decided to take out donut and Cupcake since they don’t even do the 0.1% od the distribution.

      1. That and the latest google play store doesnt support them any more

        1. Forgot that detail. Thanks .

  16. This is because we have CARRIERS in the middle. Once they no longer sell the phone (6 months to a year), support DIES. If we took Carriers OUT of the equation where to use their network was just a matter of using an APP instead of some bastardized “OS” this problem would go away practically OVERNIGHT. OTA updates of STOCK android pushed out as a COURTESY for those less tech savvy should still happen, but carrier specific “versions” should GO.

  17. Really this is as good as we could hope for. A majority of android devices being used are on jelly bean and thats a huge accomplishment considering how much low end volume is out there.

  18. Have a break…….Have a KitKat

  19. I don’t get the “fragmentation” problem. Guess what? Windows is pretty friggin’ fragmented too. Do you know how many windows users are still on XP? It’s nearly 13 years old now.

  20. They give us “smart”phones here where I work (Intel) for back and forth communications. They are currently all Motorola Admirals running Gingerbread, so those will add some numbers. I also still use my old Droid X on Gingerbread daily as my Chromecast remote. So those numbers for old versions aren’t going to go away as people tend to repurpose their expensive old phones once they get new ones.

  21. gingerbread, ice cream, whatever. They’re phones. they make calls & texts, view the internet, show the weather etc. they pretty much all do the same thing. I never could understand everyone drooling over the next new phone with a couple of tweaks every 3 months.

  22. question/poll- does kit kat and jelly bean 4.2/4.3 support the flash player apk still? love me some flash. I know its not officially supported anymore but it still works on 4.1 for me. I wonder when chrome for android will finally get a pepper flash.

  23. On a side note, I can’t wait to get KitKat on my LG G2.

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