Ice Cream Sandwich and Jelly Bean were the two flavors of Android that increased their share of the fragmented Android user base during August. Does this suggest Android Tablets are taking off?
Figures are from the Android Developer site and are based on the number of Android devices that have accessed Google Play. The latest figures having been collected for the 14-day period ending September 4, 2012.
The greatest increase (50%) is for Jelly Bean, taking it from a share of 0.8% to 1.2%. Although the increase in Ice Cream Sandwich installations is less steep (25%), it results in it having over a fifth (21%) of the Android market and this amounts to a significant share from the developer's point of view.
Overall, the tablet operating systems, Honeycomb, Ice Cream Sandwich and Jelly Bean account for almost a quarter of devices. And it must be remembered that many early tablets used earlier versions
The Android cake is now divided up as shown in this chart:
As for earlier versions, Android 1.x (Cupcake and Eclair) have less than 1% share and if you add in Eclair (2.1) the pre-Froyo versions amount to 4%. Froyo (2.2) has now dropped to 14% and, while Gingerbread is still dominant at 57%, this is a drop of over 3% from the beginning of August. Honeycomb is also in decline, down 0.2% to 2%.
The arrival on the market of attractive and affordable tablets using version 4 and 4.1 must account for some of these trends.
The Android operating system has now reached a level of development where it is starting to look mature. It looks as if we are going to have to target Gingerbread for a while, but we can look forward to the day when the majority of Android devices are Jelly Bean.