Report Finds 24K Distinct Android Devices

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Android fragmentation is alive and well. According to new stats fromOpenSignal, there are at least 24,093 distinct Android devices in the wild (and that's up from 18,796 last year).

OpenSignal—which creates crowd-sourced mobile network coverage maps—has seen the number of distinct Android devices jump from 3,997 in 2012 to this year's high of more than 24,000. Stats are based on the variety of Android devices that have downloaded the OpenSignal app.

"This complexity is both good and bad," OpenSignal's Samuel Johnston wrote in a blog post. "If you can imagine your dream phone then someone, somewhere, will probably have built it. The downside, however, is that the apps you install may not be optimized for its screen size or features."

Most of those devices are Samsung phones, though the company's share dropped from 43 percent to 37.8 percent this year, thanks to the increased popularity of phone makers like LG, Sony, Motorola, Lenovo, and Huawei. In total, 1,294 manufacturers were responsible for the 682,000 devices surveyed for this report.

"The great strength of the Android ecosystem from a consumer perspective has always been the ability to pick a device that is perfectly tailored to your specifications, as there are so many devices to pick from," OpenSignal said. "This trend has only continued, with more Android devices and manufacturers seen this year than ever before."

Google's next-generation Android OS was announced in late May, with the promise of thousands of bug fixes and small tweaks, as well as customizable app permissions, Chrome Custom Tabs, more seamless linking, and the new Doze feature.

Not everyone will gain access to Android M (Macadamia Nut Cookie? Marshmallow? Milkshake? Monkey Bread?)—OS rollouts are at the discretion of individual carriers, and may not be compatible with older Android devices.

As of Aug. 3, the most popular version of Android was KitKat at 39.3 percent, followed by Jelly Bean at 33.6 percent. Lollipop is running on 18.1 percent of Android devices.


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