Julian Yap

Android developer recommended target specifications - Not such a rosy picture

Localytics tries to paint a rosy picture for Android:

Across all apps using Localytics, a full 73% of Android usage came from devices running a variant of Android 2.3. While the build, known as “Gingerbread”, is not the most recent, from a fragmentation perspective it should be good news to developers that such a large majority of users are running the same Android OS version.

The problem is, when you have only "1% adoption":http://developer.android.com/resources/dashboard/platform-versions.html of your latest Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich operating system, developers won't be targeting that version. By targeting Android 2.2 or 2.3, Android developers are in effect stuck in the past for a long time to come. The hype surrounding any new release of Android is greatly diminished since mass adoption isn't possible in the short term. Imagine if Google announced Android 5.0 tomorrow with awesome new API features. It wouldn't mean anything.

It should be noted that the figures that Localytics mentions for Android 2.2/2.3 usage are much higher compared to the "figures":http://developer.android.com/resources/dashboard/platform-versions.html put out by Google.

74% of Android tablet usage takes place on 7 inch devices with 1024 x 600 resolution.

That percentage for tablets will surely increase as the Kindle Fire is largely seen as the only successful competitor to the iPad.

If Android tablets get stuck in "7 inch device" land, that's really going to effect the stigma associated with Android tablets and the markets it can appeal to.

2 FEBRUARY 2012 @ 12:20AM

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