Android’s distribution numbers for March: KitKat on the rise, while Gingerbread slowly dies


Android Platform Distribution numbers March 2014

It’s time once again for Google to update us on the current state of Android. Posted today to the Android Developers page, these stats are a way for Android devs to see the percentage of Android devices — and the versions of Android they’re running — that have recently visited the Google Play Store. No point in building an app optimized for Froyo when nobody is using it, right?

To make things easier to view at a glance, here are this month’s numbers as compared to February 2014 (previous month).

Android versions February –> March

  • KitKat: 1.8% –> 2.5%
  • Jelly Bean: 60.7% –> 62%
  • Ice Cream Sandwich: 16.1% –> 15.2%
  • Gingerbread: 20% –> 19%

As we can see, KitKat made a sizeable jump as more and more Android OEMs continue upgrading many of the last year’s flagship devices to Android 4.4 KitKat. We’re still in the process of watching that play out, so we’ll more than likely need another month before the Ones and GS4’s of the world are completely updated. Don’t forget all those new flagships scheduled to launch over the next few months should have that number spiking, so watch out.

Looking at Jelly Bean numbers, we really hate to lump them in with each other as there are some pretty big differences when moving from 4.1.x to 4.3 (as any Android enthusiast will tell you). We did see that 4.1.x too a slight dip from 35.5% in Feb, to 35.3% this month. We’re sure this was likely due to devices being upgraded to later versions of Jelly Bean, as 4.2.x and 4.3 continued to rise — and that’s a good thing.

Our favorite number? Watching the now ancient Android 2.3 Gingerbread drop down to 19% of active Android devices using Google Play. Once again, these numbers do not account for off-Androids like the Nokia X or Amazon HDX tablets which use alternative app stores and services than Google’s own.

[Android Developers]

Chris Chavez
I've been obsessed with consumer technology for about as long as I can remember, be it video games, photography, or mobile devices. If you can plug it in, I have to own it. Preparing for the day when Android finally becomes self-aware and I get to welcome our new robot overlords.

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  1. Die gingerbread! DIE!!! (froyo too)

    1. Why? My gingebread tastes better than Kitkats.

      1. I’d definitely rather a KitKat over a gingerbread.

      2. Ugh bring back the downvote button

    2. Why? These devices that EOL’d with GB work perfectly well as a stand-alone media, streaming, or alarm clock devices.

      Should we just throw them away when we upgrade to the newest devices?

  2. It’s my fault Kit Kat isn’t at 2.6. I haven’t updated my HTC One to a Kit Kat ROM yet. I’m sorry for giving false analyses.

    1. Let’s take his soul!!

  3. The good news for developers is that Gingerbread on up supports the new Google Play Services. So the APIs are consistent for nearly all active Android devices, reducing fragmentation. Not perfect but a big step. Most apps written for GPlay Services should run on those devices.

    1. not instagram!

      1. if it doesn’t work, is probably not written to google play serivces api’s, which means a poorly written app.

      2. Who cares about Instagram? Snapchat is fun to use to see funny/interesting but Instagram is just filled to the brim with food pictures. Histagrams are about the only Instagram-related thing I like.

        1. Instagram is terrible and all the videos on Vine aren’t funny ever.

  4. The fact that less than 3 percent of devices are on kit kat is sad in my opinion. These numbers make me sad. It’s been many months… hmmm….

    1. People use phones for a long time, and I personally get that manufacturers don’t want to release updates to phones that are >2 years old (they are just as good if not better at the end of life than they were at the time of purchase (purchase != guaranteed updates)).

  5. lol are gingerbread users destroying their phones slowly

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