Jelly Bean now powering one-third of Android devices: Google

Jelly Bean now powering one-third of Android devices: Google

Summary: With a 33 percent usage share, Jelly Bean finally has Gingerbread in its sights, and is poised to overtake the aging Android release at the top spot.


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.

(Source: Google)

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.

See alsoIs Android's market share really a 'joke'?

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.

Topics: Mobility, Android, Google, Smartphones, Tablets

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  • Jelly Bean: Fastest-Ever Growing Version Of Android

    Shows how the whole Android market is still growing exponentially, that a new version can so quickly dominate the precious, already-huge installed base.

    When was the last time Microsoft was able to do that?
    • Different worlds!

      If Windows were free and your computer told you about the update, sure Microsoft would have been able to do that.
    • You what?????

      Jelly Bean can't go on most Android devices anyway... some are stuck at 2.2 and probably a lot lower for some.

      Don't get me wrong.. I like my Android phone and Asus Transformer (prefer it for movies as it'll play what I want without converting, has hdmi, and takes SD/uSD/USB... where my ipad mini is too much of a hassle). BUT Android IS fragmented and the figures are irrelevant.. there share is spread across hundreds of devices. Add I the totally $hit and diverse synchronisation of ANYTHING, and the lack of a standard connecter and it really is 2nd class in many areas.

      I do use my Asus Transformer, and I did use my HTC phone a lot. BUT... I've since given in to some of the Apple infrastructure and use Apple TV purely to connect our phones and pads to the HiFi via airplay. Android does that too and that's useful... but I needed the Apple TV to form the infrastructure simply (don't bore me with Android Bluetooth options... irrelevant and junk) There's no doubt Apple have a major lead in overall integration.... Sony Dock in kitchen; airplay in lounge... I'm happy.
      • "the lack of a standard connecter"

        i've never seen an android phone that doesn't use micro usb
        • And ????

          How many docks does that standard connector with non standard placement fit? None!

          I had to go out before finishing the last memo. The point is ALL IOS devices can be upgraded as soon as it's released, apart from the ones that are deprecated. So 80% or so of the entire tablet and iphone base can be upgraded overnight. That cannot happen with Android and never will. You might be happy to but a new phone but why should you have to. IOS is just a simpler platform to upgrade.

          Add in itunes as a data library (I buy nought) for audio, ebooks, magazines and it's just way to easy compared to Android. I drag ebooks and magazines from my calibre library, and I plug in my iphone/tablets and they get a copy in seconds. No messing about trying to remember what device I have and where it's storing them on my Androids.

          I hate the Apple ethos and have no intention of converting films to a compatible format AND I truly hope Google/Android get a grip and make it as simple as IOS. I've been beating this drum for a year though and see no chance of that happening.

          You might think 250 devices with an average 0.25% market share each is great but lets face it.. Apple has most of the market with 10 devices. I'm no fanbois... just realistic. And now that I've got my OCS Jukebox, TuneIn radio, and whatever subset of music on my gadgets I can say I'm not looking to buy another Android in a hurry. Probably much likelier to get an Android tablet as I do keep the mini for music and books now, and Android tablet is better for multimedia on holiday etc. Phone?? Forget it; not a chance.
      • "BUT Android IS fragmented and the figures are irrelevant"

        Fragmentation is everywhere. Doesn't matter if it's Android, iOS, MacOS or Windows.

        Anytime you add features to kernel or change it's behavior, that is a candidate for fragmentation. Any time you change a hardware configuration, it is a candidate for fragmentation. Even if the version number on the operating system doesn't change.

        Apple is up to their 5th version of their phone. You can't run an app designed for iPhone 5 on iPhone 1.

        iossupportmatrix dot com shows a pretty comprehensive picture of Apple's fragmentation.

        And even though it's comprehensive, it's not exactly complete. Every iOS upgrade to weaker devices routinely makes them significantly slower or device specific features available in the newer iOS versions are unavailable on older hardware.

        These situations create more fragmentation because developers have to change their apps to check for feature availability or possibly attack performance problems a different way for apps that perform well on modern hardware and not as well on weaker hardware.

        The figures ARE relevant if you're a developer for Google Play. It shows the breakdown of devices visiting the app store that they'll deploy their apps to. This allows developers to decide what versions of Android to target for maximum exposure. It would be nice if Apple gave this information to us rather than having us rely on sampled sources such as iossupportmatrix (which is not a site owned by Apple).
  • I'll do my part this summer.

    Ditching my 2.3.7 device for 4.2.2 or 4.3 ... i'd say three years is good wear on a single phone.
    • If you don't mind tinkering with your phone's firmware

      You may be able to CyanogenMod 10 (AOSP Jelly Bean) on it and go even further.
      • i actually did do that...

        but it was a bit too laggy for my tastes. The Ole G Droid Incredible has surely seen better days, but it was not powerful enough to run the jelly bean equivalent. Granted i didn't use CM10, it was another flavor (i forgot which one). But the one I used was a pared down version even and it had a hard time keeping up sometimes.