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Too Many Android Devices Still Running Older Versions

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Too Many Android Devices Still Running Older Versions
November 02, 2010
By Susan J. Campbell, TMCnet Contributing Editor


Google fans hoping for the latest Android (News - Alert) operating system on their mobile devices may want to take a closer look before they make a purchase.

According to a recent Information Week report, only 36.2 percent of devices are actually running the Android 2.2 Froyo version. The percentage of devices running the Android 2.1 Éclair is a nearby 40.8 percent and a number of new phones are still launching with Android 1.6 – ouch.

Fortunately, even with current launches of outdated systems are launching, the versions of Android 1.5 and 1.6 still on the market are lower. Cupcake 1.5 only holds a 7.9 percent presence and Donut 1.6 claims 15 percent of all Android devices.

The Cupcake and Donut versions still on the market claim 23 percent – meaning these users are still stuck in a version of the Android platform that is too old and outdated in technology terms. Some would think Google (News - Alert) would want all users on the latest version – especially if the company hopes to continue to pound Apple’s share.

In the last month, the figures haven’t changed significantly. The biggest shift occurred between Aug. 15 and Sept. 1 as a number of devices were updated from Android 2.1 to Android 2.2.

We should expect to see another shift this month as Samsung (News - Alert) and its carrier partners are set to update the Galaxy S line of smartphones from Android 2.1 Éclair to Android 2.2 Froyo. More than 2 million Galaxy S phones have been sold in the U.S., with millions more finding homes throughout the global market.

The Samsung Galaxy Tab is also expected to go on sale this month, which will run Android 2.2. Also launching this month is the myTouch 4G from T-Mobile (News - Alert), which will run Android 2.2.

The latest boost in tablet device shipments is attributed to Android, according to a TMCnet report. Juniper Research, which provides research and analytical services to the global hi-tech communications sector, indicated that the number of annual shipments for Tablet devices would reach 81 million by 2015. Android Operating System takes the credit for this, as it has allowed new and existing manufacturers to join the market.

And, while Apple (News - Alert) may be the best selling smartphone in the third quarter, Android still claims a total of 43.6 percent (on multiple branded handsets from multiple wireless carriers). Canalys research found that the 43.6 percent of the U.S. market commanded by Android devices wasn't the only good news for Google. Global sales of Android handsets grew 1,309 percent from the same period last year, largely due to the debut of multiple new handsets running on the platform.

Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for To read more of Susan’s articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Tammy Wolf

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