Evolution of Android version distribution in 2017

An analysis and visualization of the evolution of the Android version distribution in 2017. This post includes statistical data, charts and notes about what happened in the Android ecosystem during the last 12 months.

Android is the mobile operating system created by Google and initially released in 2008. Now it’s the most used platform in the mobile landscape, but also the most used operating system on earth.

I started keeping track of its evolution in 2012 and I’ve been blogging about it every year since then.

I gathered all the data in this post from the Android developer dashboards, which provide monthly statistics on platform versions, screen sizes and OpenGL versions for all the Android devices which access Google Play. Statistics do not include Android versions with a market share lower than 0.1%.

Android version distribution in 2017

The following table shows the distribution share for each Android version in the last 13 months. I gathered all the data from the Android developers dashboard.

Android version distribution in 2017 - data table

I included December 2016 too as it helps to see how things evolved in January 2017.

As you may have noticed, numbers in red are used when a version of Android has lost distribution share respect the previous month, whereas green numbers represent a growing distribution share.

Since August 2013 data is gathered from the new Google Play Store app, which supports Android 2.2 and above. Devices running older versions are not included, but at that time they accounted for about 1% of the Android market. That was over 4 years ago, which means that proably most of them are not active any more,

Visualization of Android version distribution in 2017

The graph below shows the 2017 data as lines and it highlights the growth of Android 7.0 (Nougat):

Android version distribution 2017 lines graph

The next graph shows the 2017 data as stacked area:

Android version distribution 2017 as stacked area

The final graph shows the 2012 data as stacked bar:

Android version distribution 2017 as stacked bar

Android version distribution 2017 highlights

This is a summary of what happened in the Android ecosystem in 2017:

  • 2.2 (Froyo) finally disappeared from the market after spending 11 months at 0.1%. Farewell Froyo!
  • 2.3.3 – 2.3.7 (Gingerbread) went for the first time under 1% in April and finished the year at 0.4%. Considering its very long life it might still be around at the end of 2018.
  • 4.0.3 – 4.0.4 (Ice Cream Sandwich) keeps to imitate the evolution of Gingerbread and it will probably keep doing this till the end.
  • 4.1 (Jelly Bean) started the year at 4% and ended it at half of that.
  • 4.2 (Jelly Bean) started the year at 6% and ended it at half of that exactly like 4.1.
  • 4.3 (Jelly Bean) went for the first time under 1% last month, but it’s likely it will last one more year.
  • 4.4 (KitKat) has still more market share than all the other 4.x versions combined, despite it dropped under 20% in May.
  • 5.0 (Lollipop) dropped under 10% for the first time in February, but it ended the year above 6%.
  • 5.1 (Lollipop) went up and down for half year, then finally started to lose market share every month since June. It ended the year above 20% though.
  • 6.0 (Mashmallow) kept gaining market for most of the year, but it started to go down in September and finished the year under 30%.
  • 7.0 (Nougat) passed the 1% share in March and it kept gaining about a 2% share every month till the end of the year.
  • 7.1 (Nougat) appeared for the first time in January this year and after a slow growth finished holding 4% of the Android market.
  • 8.0 (Oreo) is the latest Android version and started to gain its share of the market only in October. It ended the year under the 1% mark, but I predict it will grow much in 2018.

In conclusion, Android 6.0 (Mashmallow) is the most used version of 2017, ending the year with almost 30% of the market. Nevertheless, its decline started and next year it will be replaced by another version, probably 7.0 (Nougat), which had a steady and fast growth all year.

Previous Android version distribution history posts

If you are interested in older periods of Android history you can check the previous posts of this series:


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