Google's stats for devices accessing its Play Store indicates that the latest incarnations of Android — versions 4.1.x and 4.2.x, codenamed Jelly Bean — now power 33 percent of devices the store.
Over the past month, Jelly Bean's usage share — called distribution by Google — has increased by 4.6 percentage points compared to the previous month. Jelly Bean's gains are at the expense of other Android versions, in particular Ice Cream Sandwich, which has seen its distribution fall by 1.8 percentage points, and Gingerbread, which has seen its distribution fall by 2.1 percentage points.
Jelly Bean is now a few percentage points away from overtaking Gingerbread as the most popular version of Android. At the current rate, this should happen this month.
The Android landscape is now a three-way split between the aging Gingerbread and Ice Cream Sandwich releases, and the current Jelly Bean release.
The data also shows quite clearly how Jelly Bean alone is now the only version of Android that is experiencing growth, which is good news for developers, because it means the ecosystem is getting less fragmented.
Beginning in April 2013, Google started delivering data collected from each device when the user visited the Google Play Store. Previously, the data was collected when the device simply checked in to Google servers. Google believes that the new data "more accurately reflects those users who are most engaged in the Android and Google Play ecosystem."
For now, the most popular version of Android continues to be Android 2.3.3 to 2.3.7 Gingerbread, a version first released back in February 2011.