Back in January, we noted how Android 6.0 Marshmallow was moving slowly in its journey towards market adoption. Since then, however, the softy candy has proven us wrong, nearly doubling its territory every time. This month is no different and, in fact, Android Marshmallow has exactly doubled its number to 4.6% up from 2.3% last month. If this keeps up, even with Android N’s introduction later this year, things will bode well for the over all Android distribution, especially in terms of mitigating version fragmentation.
Primarily a tool for developers, the monthly spread of Android versions in the market is also interesting to observe from a market perspective at it paints a better picture of the rate of adoption of newer Android versions. That said, it also portrays a still unavoidable situation where Android versions are spread over at least 4 large chunks. This fragmentation eventually leads to added burden on developers and slower rollout of updates.
As of April 4, we are at least seeing more growth in the two most recent versions of Android, specifically Android 6.0 Marshmallow and Android 5.1 Lollipop. Even Android 5.0 stepped a bit down since last month. Android 4.4 KitKat and Android Jelly Bean (4.1 to 4.3) are all going down. Curiously, this month Neither Android 2.2 Froyo nor Android 2.3 Gingerbread moved even a bit.
While things do look promising for Marshmallow, there might be a hitch later this month. Depending on how the final feature set for Android N turns out, some OEMs might find it more worthwhile to adopt that version sooner rather than go through Android Marshmallow first. This might be especially true for tablets and phablets that might be getting better multitasking features in the next version.