Localytics: Android fragmentation overstated - Mobile World Live

Localytics: Android fragmentation overstated

01 FEB 2012

The fragmentation of the Android platform is not as bad as many think, according to a survey from Localytics, which noted that “whether it’s OS version, screen size or screen resolution, the Android devices using apps with Localytics as their analytics solution have remarkably similar specifications.”

The company said that 73 percent of Android smartphone use came from devices running Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) – contrasting with the 55.9 percent that Google found from Android Market visits. An additional 23 percent of visits were from Android 2.2 (Froyo) devices, contrasting with 30 percent using Google’s analysis.

Either way, by addressing these two OS builds, developers can target upwards of 85 percent of all Android users.

Localytics also said that 41 percent of smartphone sessions came from devices with 4.3-inch screens, being “by far the most popular size.” It found that 4-inch displays accounted for 22 percent of sessions; 3.2-inch screens made up 11 percent, and 3.7-inch screens contributed 9 percent.

There was less variation in terms of resolutions. The most popular handset screen size – 800 x 480 pixels – contributed 62 percent of the study’s sessions, followed by 480 x 320 pixels (14 percent).

While this presents more options than Apple’s iOS, Localytics said that “with five options accounting for more than 90 percent of all Android app usage, the fragmentation is not particularly daunting.”

Moving onto tablets, the company said that “screen resolution and size are actually even less fragmented than handsets.” It found that 74 percent of Android use takes place on 7-inch devices with 1024 x 600 resolution, and 22 percent comes from 10.1-inch devices with 1280 x 800 resolutions – so taking the two into account, developers can reach “nearly all of the Android tablet market.”

OS distribution is similarly stable, with 71 percent of Android tablets running Android 2.3 Gingerbread. “Most” of the rest run on a version of Android 3 (Honeycomb), the version targeting tablets, which is used by 21 percent of these devices.

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Steve Costello

Steve works across all of Mobile World Live’s channels and played a lead role in the launch and ongoing success of our apps and devices services. He has been a journalist...More

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