These are the most used Android versions in 2023

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Are you using the most popular version of Android? Here is the fragmentation of the Google operating system in 2023 to know which of Android 13, Android 12, Android 11 or Android 10 is the most implemented version in the world.

A bugdroid near an Android smartphone // Source: Unsplash / Denny Müller

After Android 12, Google released Android 13 in its stable version. Also, the Android 13 rollout is off to a good start. However, this is always a good opportunity to ask yourself which version of Android is the most widely used in 2023.

To answer this, let’s take a tour of Android Studio. Software that helps developers design mobile applications for the operating system powered by Google. An infographic is hidden in this tool and is updated more or less regularly. Thanks to this source we can know the fragmentation of Android.

Android 11: the most used version in 2023

The last data shared by Google dates from January 6, 2023. Android 11 ranks first with 24.4% of the park.

As of January 2023, Android 11 R is the most widely used version of Google’s mobile operating system // Source: Frandroid

The podium is completed by Android 10 Q, second with 19.5% and Android 12 S that rises to third place with 18.9%. Android 13 starts relatively well at 5.2%.

android version Android market share
Android 13T 5.2%
android 12 S 18.9%
Android 11R 24.4%
Android 10Q 19.5%
Android 9 Pie 13.2%
Android 8.1 Oreo 6.9%
Android 8.0 Oreo 2.6%
Android 7.1 Nougat 1.8%
Android 7.0 Nougat 1.9%
Android 6.0 Marshmallow 2.8%
android 5.1 lollipop 1.8%
android 5.0 lollipop 0.3%
Android 4.4 KitKat 0.7%

The problem with Android updates

The slow rollout of new versions of Android is often highlighted. When compared to the rapid updates made by Apple to iOS, there is indeed a big gap.

Various custom bugdroids at Google France offices // Source: Frandroid

This is partly explained by the fact that when Google teams make a new version of Android available, other smartphone manufacturers using this operating system have to take the time to implement it on each of their devices. This necessarily implies additional delays. Apple does not have this concern as it implements its own operating system on its own iPhone.

A problem to qualify

If criticism of Android fragmentation is often justified, it should be toned down as well.

startup interfaces

In fact, remember that a large number of Android devices benefit from internal interfaces: One UI for Samsung, MIUI on Xiaomi, ColorOS on the Oppo side, etc.

The functions offered by these interfaces are often not perfectly aligned with those implemented by Google in Android. So it regularly happens that a manufacturer offers a choice before a major OS update arrives.

For example, many smartphones already took advantage of dark mode or screen recorder before Google integrated it by default in Android.

Application Compatibility

Also note that slow deployment of new versions of Android does not prevent apps from remaining backwards compatible. In fact, Android is designed so that developers can continue to run their apps in 90% of the park.

Most apps, as popular and continually updated as they are, don’t require an ultra-recent version of Android to work. Spotify or TikTok require Android 5.0 minimum, Android 8.0 for Facebook, or Android 4.3 for Call of Duty Mobile.

The efforts of Google and manufacturers

Finally, please note that Google is aware of the issue and is carrying out various projects to speed up the rollout of the latest major Android updates. Therefore, we thought of the Treble project, which is very promising on paper, but the results of which are not really felt yet. Therefore, efforts must be intensified, but the will is there.

Beyond that, in recent years, driven by an eco-responsible discourse, brands want to show their commitment to offering devices that last longer. While Android smartphones have long been used to only receiving two major Android updates, things are slowly but surely changing.

Google Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro // Source: Google

In its pixels, Google provides a long tracking software. Tracking software that doesn’t just generate important Android updates. The most important thing, finally, remains the security patches that will be implemented periodically.

We can cite the example of Samsung, which provides four years of regular updates after the launch of all its Galaxy smartphones, but only if they were released in 2019 or later.

How to know Android fragmentation?

To know which versions of Android are the most used, it is necessary to install Android Studio. After this step, you will need to open the software and start a new project by clicking “New Project”.

You will then need to choose a model. Here, just select any one by double clicking on it. You will then come across a window where you have to search for the clickable phrase “Help me choose”.

Screenshot of Android fragmentation data in Android Studio // Source: Frandroid

A click on this link takes you to the infographic that Google makes available to developers to estimate the number of devices that their applications can reach.

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