It may have taken over two-and-a-half years, but Gingerbread was finally surpassed today by Jelly Bean as the most used Android software version. The latest numbers for a two week period ending July 8th reveal that 37.9 percent of all Android smartphones and tablets that accessed Google Play were running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean or newer, compared to 34.1 percent for Gingerbread.
This is an important milestone for Google, as fragmentation has often been highlighted as a major issue plaguing the Android platform. For years, the issue of having too many hardware manufacturers, carriers, screen sizes, software versions and so on has been a burden on Android developers. And despite the rise in adoption of Jelly Bean, over one-third of all Android devices are still running software that was released in December 2010 or earlier.
Apple has even been using the fragmentation of Android to its advantage, promoting how 94 percent of its devices are running iOS 6 or later in a pie chart that looks eerily similar to the Android one. For developers, there is certainly an upside to having all users running on the same software and using one of the few iPhone models available.
Google recently announced versions of the Samsung Galaxy S4 and HTC One running stock Android, which will receive streamlined updates similar to the Nexus family of devices. Both devices hit the market last month, and should help further reduce Android fragmentation.
Additionally, experienced users have long bypassed the need to wait for software updates by rooting and flashing custom ROMs, such as CyanogenMod, to their Android devices. If you’re an Android user, let us know which device you have and if you’re part of the 37.9 percent running Jelly Bean.