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47% of Android Users still on 2.3 Gingerbread


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Old 04-01-2013, 12:25
slick1two
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http://www.engadget.com/2013/01/03/a...cent-of-activ/

Adoption rates for Jellybean are on the rise but it's amazing how almost half of Android users are still on 2.3. It's really annoying for those of us who are at the mercy of phone makers and networks. Being constantly told the phone after just a year, being not powerful enough for the updates. But then you see customs roms popping up which seem to prove otherwise.

Also even the phones which has do receive updates takes ages after google release it. By the time the next update is out, every other compatible oem phone is getting the previous updates.

This fragmentation of Android really doesn't look good for google. I know Android is super popular but this is one big criticism you can level at the Android platform. The release of ICS was supposed to begin to unify the platform, that is what google were saying prior to launch, but hasn't been the case.

I guess pure google phone like the nexus 4 is the way to go, but maybe google need to get tough with the Android OEMs and networks and make sure they deliver the updates at least for their flagship phones not too far after they are released. That may mean less skinning and bloatware, which would be a good thing.
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Old 04-01-2013, 12:37
Mark in Essex
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I'm guessing a lot of the Android phones out there are the cheaper ones that people are not too worried about having the latest version and that the hardware cannot cope with the newer features?
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Old 04-01-2013, 12:40
Mustabuster
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I don't really see the problem. There are a lot of users out there who aren't "power users" and are quite happy with Gingerbread. All software systems have legacy issues, even IOS so an android is no different. As for the manufacturers it's up to them whether to push through updates or whether to do so at all. Google can't dictate what OS any phone model will support.
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Old 04-01-2013, 12:45
Anika Hanson
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It's to be expected with vast number of handsets made by different companies all with different capabilities. At home we have 2 android phones and 2 android tablets, 3 are on different versions of Jelly bean and 1 is still on ICS with a jelly bean update imminent. However I think only the S3 and the nexus 7 are likely to be upgraded to Key Lime Pie.
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Old 04-01-2013, 12:55
slick1two
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I don't really see the problem. There are a lot of users out there who aren't "power users" and are quite happy with Gingerbread. All software systems have legacy issues, even IOS so an android is no different. As for the manufacturers it's up to them whether to push through updates or whether to do so at all. Google can't dictate what OS any phone model will support.
I think Google can dictate to them to some extent, when they are running google services for example some not available on the older versions of Android such as Google now. It means google do not get these features out to a greater number of users. As for hardware, sure the budget phones won't need updates. But phones that are a year old or less and current flagship models still have a long delay in getting the updates. UI is one thing but then you vet networks playing around and adding all manner of bloatware to the OS. Where do you draw the line?
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Old 04-01-2013, 13:00
tealady
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How much does it matter though?
If you can surf, email, message, get audio, video on 2.3 what are you missing out on?
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Old 04-01-2013, 13:01
jabbamk1
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Adoption rates for Jellybean are on the rise but it's amazing how almost half of Android users are still on 2.3.
It's like Internet Explorer 6 all over again...
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Old 04-01-2013, 13:06
Mustabuster
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Google simply makes the OS available it's up to the manufacturer which version to take and what customizations to put on it. This includes all the changes required to make it work with their platform so it's not just UI layer and middleware. The line is drawn by the manufacturers and network operators (of which there are many around the world), not by Google. Google can only incentivise (sp) the uptake by adding new features but they can't dictate what OS versions should be used.
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Old 04-01-2013, 13:12
kidspud
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Google simply makes the OS available it's up to the manufacturer which version to take and what customizations to put on it. This includes all the changes required to make it work with their platform so it's not just UI layer and middleware. The line is drawn by the manufacturers and network operators (of which there are many around the world), not by Google. Google can only incentivise (sp) the uptake by adding new features but they can't dictate what OS versions should be used.
Although I agree that this is the situation, I do not think it does either google or the manufacturers many favours. Most consumers wouldn't look for which combination of android and (for example) touch wiz they were buying.

Maybe the android name should be dropped by the suppliers as it is misleading and instead put version numbers on their overlays.
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Old 04-01-2013, 13:27
MGS4SnakeRulez
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My Galaxy Ace 2 still runs Gingerbread for now but my new THL (Chinese phone) runs ICS. Not fussed though to be honest I don't feel the need to have the latest and greatest thing. So long as what I have works then I'm happy.
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Old 04-01-2013, 13:34
scooby1970
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How much does it matter though?
If you can surf, email, message, get audio, video on 2.3 what are you missing out on?
I agree with this. Although all my devices are running 4.1 or 4.2 a few of my family members are using 2.x and they can surf the net, email, message, listen to audio, watch video and do virtually everything else.

You must remember that a lot of people don't update their phones every year or so and use older devices because of this, or even buy low-cost devices that use older versions of Android. It's no big deal... There are still Windows XP PCs in my work-place, and they still do the job!

Mark
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Old 04-01-2013, 13:39
slick1two
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Bit I think some people are missing the point. It may work ok whilst on an older version, but if something can be made that improves the experience and brings additional features, why would you not want in on that? I hear enough gripes from people who are waiting for updates and never get them or have waited an eternity. So people do want these updates pushed through. Just need to take a look on the customer forums of Samsung, HTC, Sony, etc.

Phone users aren't stupid and once you are aware there is an update, people are at least curious. We're not all obliviously walking around with our heads in the sand. The biggest problem is the delay, or OEMs making promises they can't keep. Like my Desire HD was supposed to get an ICS update. But were told after waiting that the phone is not up to it. That's nonsense, because there are many custom roms floating around that are running quite well. I just rather would not root the phone, because I don't like messing up too much, but the point is, the phone makers drop support far too quickly. You may be tied in to a 2 year contract, There may be bugs on the current OS that can be ironed out, so google improve and clean up the User experience, but you having had the phone not too, will not see the improvements or the fixes. That can't be right can it?
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Old 04-01-2013, 13:40
niceguy1966
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HTC made ICS available for Desire S on its developer site, but didn't do an over the air update.

I'm guessing the percentage of owners that did the upgrade is in single digits.

2.3 is a perfectly good OS, and even a small inconvenience would put most people off upgrading. If people in the real world (I.e. not phone geeks that post here) actually cared, HTC would have rolled out ICS in a much more high profile way. They had done 99% of the work.

This Android Issue that gets so much publicity just isn't a problem for most users.
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Old 04-01-2013, 13:43
slick1two
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I agree with this. Although all my devices are running 4.1 or 4.2 a few of my family members are using 2.x and they can surf the net, email, message, listen to audio, watch video and do virtually everything else.

You must remember that a lot of people don't update their phones every year or so and use older devices because of this, or even buy low-cost devices that use older versions of Android. It's no big deal... There are still Windows XP PCs in my work-place, and they still do the job!

Mark
I take your point, but there is doing the job and there is doing the job BETTER. I am sure people, as a general rule like the job done better. Some may not care, but I can go way back to the days of the HTC Hero, which I had and can remember checking the forums, and it took an age to move from 1.6 to 2.0 and people going crazy to the point of emailing HTC and all sorts, trying to find a sniff of information. These aren't just geeks and developers, but normal average users, and a great many too, they did a petition at one point as well, with thousands of signatures demanding Hero owners got 2.0.

Sure the handset worked, but people wanted the new features and certain apps that would only work with the later OS version. Even today, you cant get chrome on 2,3 for example.
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Old 04-01-2013, 13:57
tealady
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Bit I think some people are missing the point. It may work ok whilst on an older version, but if something can be made that improves the experience and brings additional features, why would you not want in on that?
Depends on how much of an improvement it is and whether the additional features are useful. Anecdotally, I'd say most people won't really notice the difference and won't be bothered if they can't have chrome as long as they can get their football scores.
How many people root their phones to get more/better life out of them?
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Old 04-01-2013, 14:07
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I guess this is the result of such a convoluted and fragmented OS. Have you got 4.0? Will its out of date get 4.0.1. Oh now you need 4.0.2, but then it's time for 4.1.1.

Of course don't forget with each update you'llose a few apps. It's an absolute bloody nightmare, why can't they just do it the way blackberry or Apple do it?
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Old 04-01-2013, 14:09
slick1two
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Depends on how much of an improvement it is and whether the additional features are useful. Anecdotally, I'd say most people won't really notice the difference and won't be bothered if they can't have chrome as long as they can get their football scores.
How many people root their phones to get more/better life out of them?
I agree to some extent, but looking at the bigger picture, The option should at least be there. With this attitude then, tech may as well stay stagnant, as long as people have something which works, lets not bother to innovate or improve upon anything. A 486 pc from 15 years ago still "works" so people should not bother having anything better, quicker, more efficient etc. That's not the way it works in tech.

The problem is, phone makers running Android want to differentiate their offering to a rival that uses Android. In doing so, it takes an age to customize it. Then for those who have branded handsets, it's off to the network to have a play around with it, because they too want to add yet more gunk, network logos on the startup screen etc. Would you say this is a good way of going about bringing updates and improvements to a phone? I don't think so.
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Old 04-01-2013, 14:26
Mustabuster
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Most people don't buy their phones for the tech but for their lifestyle. You and your friends may be engaged in a a willy waving tech arms race so you can't imagine the motivations of people who don't think like you. There are a lot of people out there who buy a phone for what it will do for them, not what the phone can do. There's a difference.

If you want it all and you want it now you get a sim free phone or a phone by Google. Otherwise you wait.
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Old 04-01-2013, 14:30
slick1two
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Most people don't buy their phones for the tech but for their lifestyle. You and your friends may be engaged in a a willy waving tech arms race so you can't imagine the motivations of people who don't think like you. There are a lot of people out there who buy a phone for what it will do for them, not what the phone can do. There's a difference.

If you want it all and you want it now you get a sim free phone or a phone by Google. Otherwise you wait.
Whats with the aggressive, patronizing tone? I thought we were having a sensible discussion. But you feel the need to get personal? I can do that too but would rather not stoop to your level.
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Old 04-01-2013, 14:39
Mustabuster
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Whats with the aggressive, patronizing tone? I thought we were having a sensible discussion. But you feel the need to get personal? I can do that too but would rather not stoop to your level.
Sorry about that I didn't mean it to sound the way it did. My point was that you and your peers are of a certain market segment that's all.
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Old 04-01-2013, 14:44
TeeGee
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It does surprise me that it is so hard to upgrade Android. My HTC Wildfire on 2.2 can't even access iPlayer.
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Old 04-01-2013, 14:47
slick1two
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Sorry about that I didn't mean it to sound the way it did. My point was that you and your peers are of a certain market segment that's all.
I'm sorry but you cannot make any assumption about what kind of phone user I am, without knowing what I even use it for. As for my peers, you also do not know who THEY are either. So you are totally off base.

My point is, that sometimes older versions are not quite up to scratch, people want phones that work, and work well. That's not just a techie thing, if anything techies don't really care, as they are using custom roms, many of which do not even work properly but they love to tinker around. Me, I do not do that. I want something that is nicely optimized,which works as intended and yes get software updates, because getting more bang for your buck is a good thing in every aspect of consumerism.

It's not asking too much that a phone which was only out a year, one which you are tied to for 2 years, should receive at least 1 major update within that timespan. What is wrong, is when support for that said handset is dropped, without any real clarification, even though the hardware can take the update.

It's my opinion of the Android platform, you do not have to agree, but I see the way Android phones handle updates, or lack of is not a good thing. Yes there is a nexus phone, but one one may not prefer to get one, because there are other things you look for when buying a phone, personal preference does come in to it.
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Old 04-01-2013, 14:56
Mustabuster
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I don't think other manufacturers do it any better tbh. Apple just stop supporting older models with updates after a few short years and Nokia before they went to Windows had a massive problem trying to support legacy software whilst at the same time adding new stuff resulting in clunky sw. I think Google are just running with what they've got and maintain 2-3 versions of android with updates to sell to the different market segment tiers.
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Old 04-01-2013, 15:05
Voynich
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I love getting the latest OS on my devices but I can understand how a lot of people get used to what they're using and think 'if it isn't broke...' even if the option to upgrade is available. The only time I regretting upgrading an OS was iOS 6. I was warned but I did it anyway.
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Old 04-01-2013, 15:48
grumpyoldbat
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I don't think other manufacturers do it any better tbh. Apple just stop supporting older models with updates after a few short years and Nokia before they went to Windows had a massive problem trying to support legacy software whilst at the same time adding new stuff resulting in clunky sw. I think Google are just running with what they've got and maintain 2-3 versions of android with updates to sell to the different market segment tiers.
To be honest, prior to WP, the average Nokia user never did firmware updates. They didn't know what OS their phone was running. The tiny, tiny percentage of Symbian 60/3rd/5th edition users who even knew what firmware was, was insignificant in the grand scheme of things. It's why supporting apps in the Ovi store was such a pain.
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