Android 4.1 Jelly Bean may be Google's newest brag-worthy operating system, but Ice Cream Sandwich still reigns supreme in the mobile market. A new report from Google shows that Ice Cream Sandwich is powering nearly 16 percent of all Android devices.
The search-engine giant just released its most recent Android distribution figures based on the number of devices accessing the Google Play store. The company's statistics, which were published by the Verge, reveal that 15.9 percent of these devices are running on Ice Cream Sandwich, while Jelly Bean accounts for 0.8 percent. This is a jump of almost 50 percent for the previous Android operating system from last month, when it claimed a 10.9 percent share.
However, the Android operating system that comprises most of the Google-branded mobile market is the Gingerbread OS. This treat-themed software accounts for more than 60 percent of Android devices, and Froyo comes in second at 15.5 percent.
Although Android 2.3.3 owns a staggering percentage of the market share, the fresh statistics provide a baseline for the Jelly Bean operating system. Debuting at 0.8 may not seem like a significant feat, but considering that Jelly Bean has only been released for Nexus devices and the Motorola Xoom tablet, it's a decent start.
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean was officially unveiled at Google's I/O developer conference at the end of June, where the company also revealed its Nexus 7 tablet. It was released as an over-the-air update for the Samsung Galaxy Nexus on July 11 and is pre-installed on the Nexus 7 tablet.
Reports have suggested that Google is currently performing tests to release Jelly Bean on the Samsung Galaxy S2 and S3 devices, but there has been no official word yet. The reason Android devices seem to update slowly is the process of software rolling out from Google to the phone manufacturers and then to the carriers before being sent to the device, ZDNet noted. However, there are aftermarket firmware project across the Web, such as CyanogenMod, who attempt to surpass this barrier through offering updates for hardware direct.
This lack of Android updates not only denies users access to new features but also means that security vulnerabilities are not patched, leaving both devices and the data they contain open to hackers, writes Adrian Kingsley-Hughes of ZDNet.
Google has also recently posted Jelly Bean factory images for its line of Nexus devices. On Friday, the Google developer's site received files that would enable users who have installed custom builds to restore their Android devices to a fresh, out-of-the-box state. This means that after downloading the binary image files, tablets and smartphones would be renewed and returned to a clean slate running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.
Features to come with the upgraded software include the following:
- Smoother interface known as Project Butter
- Android Beam, which lets users share content through Near Field Communication by tapping devices to another compatible device
- Overhauled notification system that allows users to respond to certain alerts directly from the notification tray
- New and improved keyboard
- Google Now, which learns a user's regular behavior on the device and provides information even before a user searches for it
Check out the video below to see what the new buttery smooth operating system can do on the Google Nexus 7 tablet.
Lisa Eadicicco is a reporter covering mobile technology and video games for The International Business Times. Lisa joined the editorial team at IBT in January 2012, and has...