Android: 2016

Michael Watterson's picture

When reviewing a phone or tablet, it's important to understand the
difference between faults and advantages of OS versions (Android) and
the implementation, hardware, firmware, software, customisations,
supplied apps etc.

From Wikipedia Android OS<

Charts in this section provide breakdowns of Android versions, based on devices accessing the Google Play Store< in a seven-day period ending on September 5, 2016.[291]<[d]< Therefore, these statistics exclude devices running various Android forks< that do not access the Google Play Store, such as Amazon's Fire tablets<.

Version Code name Release date API level DVM/ART Distribution First devices to run version
7.0< Nougat< August 22, 2016 24 Unknown "less than 0.1%" Nexus 5X<, Nexus 6P<
6.0 – 6.0.1< Marshmallow< October 5, 2015 23 Unknown 18.7% Nexus 5X<, Nexus 6P<
5.1 – 5.1.1< Lollipop< March 9, 2015 22 Unknown 21.9% Android One<
5.0 – 5.0.2< November 3, 2014 21 ART 2.1.0 13.1% Nexus 6<
4.4 – 4.4.4< KitKat< October 31, 2013 19 ART 1.6.0 27.7% Nexus 5<
4.3 – 4.3.1< Jelly Bean< July 24, 2013 18 Unknown 2.3% Nexus 7 2013<
4.2 – 4.2.2< November 13, 2012 17 Unknown 7.7% Nexus 4<, Nexus 10<
4.1 – 4.1.2< July 9, 2012 16 Unknown 5.6% Nexus 7<
4.0 – 4.0.4< Ice Cream Sandwich< December 16, 2011 15 Unknown 1.4% Galaxy Nexus<
2.3 – 2.3.7< Gingerbread< February 9, 2011 10 DVM 1.4.0 1.5% Nexus S<
2.2 – 2.2.3< Froyo< May 20, 2010 8 Unknown 0.1% Droid 2<

Since May 2016, more than half of devices have OpenGL ES 3.0< or higher.

Brand new devices, particularly tablets may have older versions (September 2016). Version 4.4x (Kitkat) and Version 5.x (Lollipop) seem to be most common on 7" tablets. Very often a phone or tablet can't easily (or at all) be updated. Many devices are hard to root (unlock, this is not Carrier / Mobile Operator unlocking) to install an alternate OS or version.