Opinion: Where does Android fragmentation come from and why it’s not really there

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Probably everyone knows that the main problem of Android – is fragmentation, or, in simple terms, the simultaneous coexistence of millions of devices based on different versions of the OS. At least, it is customary to answer in a decent society, when talking about the shortcomings of modern mobile platforms. But to call it a problem completely pointless, and proved readers who took part in our recent survey.

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Contrary to official Google statistics, indicating that the majority of smartphones on the market are still working on the basis of outdated versions of Android 2014-2015 release, it turned out that in reality everything is not so simple.

The most popular version of Android

According to the results of the survey it was found that the most common version of Android among our readers is Android 8 Oreo. It is the software basis of smartphones 42% of respondents. In second place with a share of 36% was Android 9 Pie, and the third broke Android 7 Nougat, voted for by 10% of respondents. It turns out that almost 90% of users own devices based on the latest OS versions. But where, then, does that fragmentation come from? Now explain.

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All those who took part in the survey form the backbone of the so-called active audience of Android OS users. They are interested in the latest technologies, try to keep abreast of the latest trends and they do not care what is happening in the market. As a rule, most of them own flagship or mid-price devices, which they try to change for new ones within 2-3 years, simply because more advanced and functional solutions appear in the world.

Fragmentation of Android myth
That’s just active users are not so much. All the rest are so-called forced users: children to whom parents gave their old smartphone or bought something as inexpensive as possible for the first time, elderly people who consider a smartphone solely as a means of communication, and those – let’s call them “others” — who are not ready to spend a lot of money on a smartphone, but no longer wants to use push-button devices, which, in their opinion, are no longer in fashion.

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All of these people are low-engagement, do not pay attention to the functionality of their smartphones and tend to ignore all available updates. By and large, they do not care what figure is in the column “Android Version”, whether their smartphone can take portrait pictures and whether it supports augmented reality. They are here-only insofar as. There is no fragmentation for them.

And you?

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Updated: January 29, 2019 — 12:06 am

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