Gingerbread is on 38.7% of Android phones

Daniel Bader

October 4, 2011 9:49pm


The latest monthly Android distribution charts are in, and it’s looking good for the anti-fragmentation crowd. The total number of phones running on Froyo or higher is up to 84%, with 38.7% running Gingerbread, the latest version for phones. The total rises to 97.5% if you factor in Android 2.1. In short, the fragmentation issue is a lot less important now than a year ago.While Gingerbread has some great improvements over its 2.x brethren, there are very few core features that are missing between 2.1 and 2.3.

As for Honeycomb, the outlook doesn’t look as bright. Only 1.8% of Android devices run the tablet OS, but that speaks more to the number of phones out there than the success of the tablet space. Certainly the Android tablet market hasn’t taken off as some would have liked, but things should look better when Ice Cream Sandwich is announced next week at Samsung Unpacked.

Source: Android Developers Forum via Phandroid

  • RICH CALGARY

    Ice Cream Sandwhich isn’t for tablets. Its for smartphones.

    • Jeremy

      Ice Cream Sandwich is slated to be a version of Android for both phones and tablets, therefore making fragmentation between various Android devices a smaller issue.

  • jellmoo

    So less than 40% of handsets are using the current firmware after it has been out almost 11 months and this is a good thing?

    • Adam

      That includes all devices out there. So things like the HTC Magic and Dream that might still have 1.5 or 1.6 are included here. Some people just won’t be upgraded. Once the old devices are phased out, you’ll see the numbers changed.

      Google has said with Ice Cream Sandwich, they are guaranteeing something like 2 years of consistent updates for every device.

      As for Ice Cream Sandwich, it will be for Tablets. It’s supposed to be the version that combines the phone and tablet OS into one common OS.

  • Alex

    And what’s gonna happen in a month or so when ICS comes out? Here we go again! It’s a never-ending mess.

    • Stuntman

      Would you rather Google not release ICS just so there are fewer versions of Android out there?

    • Nick

      Yeah, Google should stop improving so gosh darn quickly. All these improvements are confusing the people used to Apple’s one update every year (and only one major update every 2 years).

      The insane pace of improvement is what allowed Google to catch up to (and depending on your personal opinion, surpass) the competition in a year or two. The catch is that to get the full benefit of the insane pace of improvements the consumer has to be responsible enough to pick a handset company that will update. Seems like a pretty good deal to me.

  • lolz

    There are quite few cheaper tablets out there running 2.2.x and not 3.x.x FW.

  • daveloft

    Three months ago it was mentioned that there were 550,000 Android devices activated daily and a total of 130 Million devices.

    July 5th -Honeycomb was on 0.9% of 130 Million devices, making for 1.17 Million Honeycomb tablets sold and in use on the market.

    August 1st – Honeycomb was on 1.3% of 146 Million devices, making for 1.9 Million Honeycomb tablets sold and in use on the market.

    September 2nd – Honeycomb is on 1.4% of 163 Million devices, making for 2.28 Million Honeycomb tablets sold and in use on the market.

    October 4th – Honeycomb is on 1.8% of 179 Million devices, making for 3.23 Million Honeycomb tablets sold and in use on the market.

    From these numbers you see some consistent growth in Honeycomb, except between August 1st and September 2nd when the hot tablet to buy was the HP Touchpad at $99. After the Touchpad disappeared growth for Honeycomb continued. These numbers are way behind the iPad, but a growing interest in Honeycomb is clearly illustrated. It’s important to note these numbers only represent Honeycomb and does not include 2.x tablets as that is more difficult to calculate.

    I expect to see these numbers increasing more rapidly going into the holiday season fueled by Ice Cream Sandwich and a lowered price point due to increased competition.

  • Mark

    I love it how people complain that Android has bad fragmentation issues but they don’t even look at iOS. iOS doesn’t run on everything, Apple starts making it so the old devices can’t run the new firmware. At least with Android developers can port over the different versions, you don’t have that with iOS. I still know people using 3G variants of the iPhone and first and second generation iPods with an old version of iOS.

  • Peacenik

    Mark you comparing Apples to Oranges. The Android fragmentation is on newer devices. Of course 3 to 4 year old idevices won’t run the latest iOS just like old Android devices cannot run the latest OS. The iPhone 3GS — a 2 plus year old device will still work with iOS 5 by the way

  • TeknoBug

    Good, GB is finally catching up, there were too many phones out there with 2.2 and in some cases 2.1. I’ve had Cyanogenmod 7 on my Desire and Optimus One since last November.