How Fragmented is Android ?


Android is deeply deeply fragmented.

Android Fragmentation - eggonomy.com

Android brags it has 75% market share. This is true. But let’s drill down a bit …

  • Android has 75% market share.
  • Pie has 11.26% of total Android market share.
  • Samsung has 5.0% of total Pie market share.
  • The Samsung Pie 5.0% is further split between 12 or so different device phone models.

    I think you get the drift.

    My guesstimates ... Android has about ...

    • 12 OS versions,
    • 12 main device manufacturers, and
    • 12 handset models on average per manufacturer.

    So the Android ecosystem is split between at least 1,728 combinations of OS - Brand - Device Model (Data). The majority of these devices do not get any updates from Android. Yet Google collects vast amounts of data from these devices that it uses for targeted ad placement.

    Google acknowledges this problem with the launch of Android One. But given that every device manufacturer wants their own flavor of Android, it’s unlikely this fragmentation will stop any time soon.

    This is a problem only time can fix … when all the old devices end up in the landfill and their owners (hopefully) buy a new Android device which offers latest updates. Probably another 5 years.

    By contrast iOS 12.X has about 80.5% market share. The vast majority of iPhone users update to the latest version quite fast and flawlessly.

    My POV is ... Apple leads the Mobile OS market share ... by a huge margin. 

    Data Analysis & Source Data: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ruifcPL9CFGabxBftZAlEzdv0JP0kM99/view?usp=sharing

    Follow the discussion on Hacker News: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=20015968


    • Apple doesn’t get Google’s fragmented market share then? They still have 22, not 80.1% and the rest just belong to these fragments.

      Androids existence still blocks then from the majority of the market even if portions of that makrket aren’t useful to google

    • If it can run app X it isn’t a fragment, otherwise it is. Version and Manufacturer proportions don’t show such info. (More manufacturers is a good thing in general; insecurity from not updating is bad.)

    • Fragmented or not, Android is Android. Doesn’t make sense that just because everyone’s on one version of Apple, they’re the leaders. You could say the same about Windows versions, Linux flavours, etc.

    • I can’t see what this article (obvious statement) aims to prove. Comparing Android market to iOS one is like comparing apples to oranges.


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