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Latest Android distribution report highlights Google's fragmentation issue

Android Distribution Report
Android Distribution Report
Google Press Release Kit

While the latest version of Android has been out in the wild for sometime, only a few devices are rocking the newest version of Android. The new Android platform distribution report from Google illustrates that fragmentation is still the biggest issue with its mobile operating system. In a report dated July 7, Google's latest report shows that just 17.9% of Android users have access to the latest version of the software.

Fragmentation has always been a big issue for Google, and it continues to be the biggest turn-off about the platform in general. While Apple has always been able to boast a near 90 percent adoption rate of its latest software, Google has often struggled to reach 20 percent, and this is true with the latest version of Android (aka KitKat) with only 17.9 percent of users being on the newest version.

The problem with Android is that most users get stuck with old versions of the software thanks to device manufacturers and carriers not wanting to update older devices (even if those old devices are just 6 months old).

The report shows that 0.7 percent of devices still use Android 2.2 Froyo, 13.5 percent use 2.3 Gingerbread, 11.4 percent of devices are stuck on Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, and a total of 58.4 percent are still running various versions of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.

While Android KitKat has had a faster adoption rate than any other version of Android in the history of the operating system, the numbers still leave a lot to be desired. A large chunk of the fast adoption rate numbers come from the fact that new devices such as the Samsung Galaxy S5 and the HTC M8 were released with the latest of Android version pre-installed.

Unfortunately the vast majority of Android devices will likely never be upgraded to KitKat thanks to the business practices of the four major carriers who simply want you to purchase a newer device, which already has the latest version of Android installed. When it comes to adoption rates of new software, Google has a lot to improve upon, and it is this reason alone why many people opt to stay with devices from competing companies such as the iPhone and Windows Phone from Microsoft.