Propelled by flagships, KitKat now on 8.5% of Android devices

May 3, 2014
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Samsung Galaxy S5 android 4.4 kitkat 2

April has been a great month for KitKat, with the latest version of Google’s operating system growing 3.5 percentage points, powered by the launch of several high-profile Android flagships.

In Google’s platform version statistics for the week ending May 1, Android 4.4 KitKat is now at 8.5 percent, while the bulk of devices checking in the Play Store ran Jelly Bean versions, with a combined share of 60.5 percent.

Ice Cream Sandwich and the stubborn Gingerbread continued their slow descent towards oblivion, though, combined, the two aging versions of Android still hold just under 30 percent.

Google includes in this snapshot devices that ran the latest Play Store app, thus excluding devices such as the Kindle Fire line, the Nokia X, and many devices sold in developing countries.

android distribution numbers may 2014

Looking at the similar stats from April and March, KitKat’s growth is quite consistent, with the version going from 2.5 percent to 8.5 percent in just two months. The jump is owed to the release of new versions of popular series like the Galaxy S, HTC One, and Sony Xperia. The Galaxy S5 in particular enjoyed a wide release in 125 countries, and, if Samsung is to be believed, it was welcomed enthusiastically by consumers. Likewise, the HTC One launched in the US and around the world in the first week of April, while Sony’s Xperia Z2 became available this week in Europe and parts of Asia.

But it’s not just new high-end devices contributing to the growth of KitKat. Big Android OEMs released updates to some of their devices in the measured interval, while mid-rangers such as the HTC Desire 816 and Desire 610 also added to KitKat’s numbers.

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