Join Transform 2021 this July 12-16. Register for the AI event of the year.

Google today updated its Platform Versions page for Android, and the news is quite good. Android 4.4 KitKat was the only release to gain adoption share, as all previous versions slipped.

Android 4.4 KitKat is now on nearly a third of mobile devices running Google’s mobile OS, though it still has a long way to go before catching up to Jelly Bean. While the Nexus 9 officially launched today with Android 5.0 Lollipop, the latest mobile operating system version naturally won’t show up in the chart just yet:


More specifically, here are the changes between September and November:

  • Android 4.4 KitKat: Up 5.7 points to 30.2 percent
  • Android 4.1/4.2/4.3 Jelly Bean: Down 2.9 points to 50.9 percent
  • Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich: Down 1.1 points to 8.5 percent
  • Android 2.3 Gingerbread: Down 1.6 points to 9.8 percent
  • Android 2.2 Froyo: Down 0.1 points to 0.6 percent

For the sake of comparison, here’s the Android adoption chart for September:


As with any updates using this tool, it’s important to note that the data is gathered from the Google Play Store app, which requires Android 2.2 and above. That means devices running older versions are not included, nor are devices that don’t have Google Play installed (such as Amazon’s Fire line).

Looking ahead, Google’s new Nexus devices will give Lollipop a decent start, but if history repeats itself, it won’t be anything to write home about. Android 5.0 updates for existing devices, as well as major new phones and tablets in time for the holiday season, will be the ones that really kick off the next upgrade cycle.

We expect Lollipop will jump into third place rather quickly, but it will take a while to get into second, and eventually first. Unfortunately, Google still doesn’t have a decent strategy for getting the latest Android version out to more users, at least none that it has announced along with Lollipop. So far, the company seems perfectly content pushing updates via Google Play Services and letting new Android version adoption happen naturally.


VentureBeat's mission is to be a digital town square for technical decision-makers to gain knowledge about transformative technology and transact. Our site delivers essential information on data technologies and strategies to guide you as you lead your organizations. We invite you to become a member of our community, to access:
  • up-to-date information on the subjects of interest to you
  • our newsletters
  • gated thought-leader content and discounted access to our prized events, such as Transform 2021: Learn More
  • networking features, and more
Become a member