Jelly Bean only represents 1.2% of Android web traffic, anyone surprised?

by: Andrew GrushSeptember 18, 2012

Jelly Bean is the latest version of Android to hit the market, but how many devices actually utilize it? Looking at Google’s August numbers, 1.2% of Android web traffic comes to from a Jelly Bean device.

Considering Android 4.1 Jelly Bean was first open-sourced in July, is this growth rate too slow? Yes, it is, but no one should be surprised. Google Android has a lot going for it, but version fragmentation is arguably one of its weaknesses. Even ICS rates aren’t exactly that high, at about 16.7%.

While most Android apps will play nice with just about any version at Gingerbread or higher, the fact remains that there are still tons of Android 2.x, 3.x and 4.x intermingled out there. Many new budget handsets are still shipping with Gingerbread, even.

Is this any different from the PC world? Yes and no.

Looking at desktop OS data from earlier this summer, about 50% of users were still running the aging Windows XP platform.  30% had moved on to Windows 7. Less than 10% were on Windows Vista.

As you can see, fragmentation is part of the OS game. Those who criticize Android’s fragmentation need to realize that this happens with almost all platforms. Even on Windows Phone there are still users that are on Windows Mobile 6 variants, despite the fact that Windows Phone 8 is on its way out the door.

The good news is that Google seems more committed than ever to start pushing out Jelly Bean to more devices. Motorola is also strongly behind the idea of bringing Jelly Bean to as many of its recent devices as possible.

Jelly Bean won’t end the fragmentation found in Android, but it is clear that Google is aware of the problem and is doing its best to address it. Does Android fragmentation bother you, or do you feel it’s something that just comes with the open-source territory?

  • JensAstrup

    It drives me insane to think that there are people with Froyo on their phones and they think that Android IS Froyo and they show their friends their Android phone and those people judge Android based off of Froyo.

    • Kassim

      My sentiments too…it’s bad for Android’s image and it just doesn’t have to be so bad if all manufacturers could just get their heads out of their moneybags.

      I’m quietly waiting for a Nexus device that can appeal to me completely and then I will have good reason to leave my Desire S behind. Nexus 7 came close but it all came down to that lack of micro SD slot *sigh*.

      Oh well, I live in hope…

      • carlisimo

        Uh, Google is generally opposed to the use of SD cards as additional storage space, and I don’t see them ever changing that.

        • Kassim

          Well…that’s where hope comes in, of course!

          The rapid evolution of the android ecosystem has forced many to adapt, with the market itself more or less dictating in which direction we go next. So, just because they are ‘opposed to it’ today doesn’t mean they will be tomorrow (…probably).

          Market forces can be overwhelmingly irresistible…

          • Tuetlejone5

            Google has a fixation with streaming (Music Manager) and online storage (Drive), I can’t see that changing. I feel like a lot of companies may start the push for “Cloud” like device storage.

  • CloudWarrior

    Most Android phones aren’t upgradable. Most of the iOS users I know have the latest version. Unless carriers or Google changes their behavior and work with phone manufacturers to keep them up-to-date, I can’t imagine the situation changing. I am quite happy with my Galaxy S II but I am tired of manufacturer delays and considering switching to Windows Phone 8.

    • alex13809

      i have an iphone 3gs, and let me tell you ios5 doesn’t run with all its features. In fact it runs slowly and painfully. About as fast as running ics on the original nexus. Its painful.

  • Well, maybe if carriers would actually start releasing updates instead of labeling them as “soon” or “in the near future” we’ll see some JB traffic.
    Chances are that 80% out of the 1.2% are people with custom roms.

  • carlisimo

    It seems a bit absurd to complain that iOS is a year behind Android when most Android users are two years behind. And we like to compare Google Now to
    Siri, when hardly anybody has access to it.

    But that’s fine. It’s real life. And I can understand that ICS was a big
    enough upgrade over GB to be difficult to implement on existing phones.

    What I DON’T get is why 4.0->4.1 is so difficult. I don’t think a single non-Nexus phone has made that jump yet (some tablets have), and even some Nexus phones haven’t! We shouldn’t have high-spec phones coming out with 4.0 three or four months after it was made obsolete. There are phones coming out a couple of months that won’t have 4.1 either! Did Google not tell the OEMs that it was coming?

  • Its still new. The Note 2 will come with Jellybean and make it more famous.

  • Scorpineo
  • FO

    Is it me or comparing Windows to Android for fragmentation makes no sense at all…!

    Windows = You need to pay, personnaly, to purchase the updgrade
    Android = Open Source and you don’t have to pay personnally for the updgrade

    People don’t update Windows but they have the option to do so
    People don’t update Android because they don’t have the option to do so
    (talking about most customers which would not root their device and install custom roms)

    Give people with Gingerbread the option to update their device to JB and they probably would… even if you’d charge something!

  • RANT
    The only big complaint about Android, and I’m sure that I’m not alone on this. Is that the operating system needs to set a time frame of when all devices gets updated about at the same time. It doesn’t even have to be on the same exact day. Example, all devices must have the latest update available in __insert month____.
    I love Android due to it’s flexibility, but I also wish it had some standards that all of the devices use or have.

  • rj5555

    I guess the numbers quoted in this article are from the stats on developer . Android . com.
    THESE NUMBERS ARE NOT “android web traffic” but % of accesses to the play store in a two week time frame.