Android Lollipop, the new version of Google’s mobile operating system, is now running on less than 2 percent of all Android devices. The statistics now show up on Android Developer Dashboard along with the information of previous versions of Android.
Google first announced Android Lollipop in its annual I/O conference back in 2014. At that time, the new version was given a codename, Android L. The real name of the version was announced later in the year. Since the release of the new version, the adoption has been steady with Motorola being the first company to roll out Lollipop update to its Android smartphones.
Up until now, there was no statistics available for Android Lollipop on Android Developer Dashboard, which shows user statistics of all versions of Android. According to CNET, an Android version must run on a minimum of 0.1 percent of all Android devices in order for the information about that version to show up on the developer dashboard. Now that Android Lollipop has reached 1.6 percent of smartphones, Google has put up the information there.
The stats are based on all the Android-powered devices that have accessed Google’s app market, Google Play store, during the seven-day period ending at Feb. 2.
Google publishes Android distribution statistics every month. According to information gathered from the seven-day period, the most popular version of Android is Jelly Bean which runs on 44.5 percent of all devices. Jelly Bean has three different flavors. The percentage is a combination of all three. After Jelly Bean, Google rolled out 4.4 KitKat which is still the default version most smartphones come pre-installed with. But it has a relatively low share of just 39.7 percent while Android Lollipop has lowest usage of less than 2 percent of all Android phones.
The reason why most smartphones running on Google’s mobile operating system do not receive update as quickly as Apple iPhone does is rigorous testing that carriers and manufacturers do after every new version is released. Carriers and smartphone manufacturers test the new version for compatibility with features, optimize for better performance, and then pushes out to users in different regions at different times.
Some smartphone manufacturers use their own version of user interface, known as skins, on top of stock Android operating system to provide users with a different flavor. While the custom user interfaces have their share of ups and downs, it is often what causes the delay in rolling out the new version to users across the world.
However, when it comes to Nexus devices, that is not the case. Google directly pushes every new version of Android to the Nexus devices. Because they run on stock Android, there is little to no customization that’s needed. In fact, Google does the initial optimization and customization on Nexus phones and tablets. So when the new version is ready, it’s ready for the Nexus devices before anything else.
The competition is who comes first with the new version after Nexus device. Motorola has gained a lot of positive feedback from users and reviewers for being the first company to roll out Android Lollipop update to its users. It not only delivered the new version to its first and second generation of flagship phone Moto X, but it also satisfied the users of first and second generation of its mid-range budget smartphone, Moto G.
Another popular smartphone manufacturer HTC has already promised Android 5 update to its flagship M8 and previous flagship M7 in addition to a number of mid-range smartphones.
Android Lollipop is running on less than 2 percent of all Android phones as of now, but the adoption is expected to rise when the statistics are published next month on Android Developer Dashboard.
By Aminul Islam Sajib