Google has released the latest distribution numbers for Android, which continue to be dominated by Android 7.0 and 7.1 Nougat. The Android version released back in 2016 still runs on 28.2-percent of all active Android devices, as compared to 29.3-percent recorded last month. The second spot is now taken by 8.0 and 8.1 Oreo with a share of 21.5-percent, closely followed by Marshmallow which still commands a significant 21.3-percent portion despite being over three years old by now. According to the previous data release from earlier this month, the former stood at 19.2-percent, with the latter at 21.6-percent. Notably, the latest version of Android – the Android 9 Pie – is still missing from the distribution chart for October, months following its official launch.
Android Pie was made public in early August and was released for a handful of devices, mostly the Pixel-branded ones. Google's policy is that any Android version running on less than 0.1-percent of active devices is not to be included in the monthly charts, indicating the limited reach of the company’s latest operating system version. However, this revelation isn’t surprising as the same has been the case with all previous Android releases and Android 9 Pie likely won't hold a sizeable chunk of the market until at least late 2019. Even Android Lollipop released in late 2014 is currently running on 17.9-percent of devices, with Android versions as old as Gingerbread from 2010 still appearing in the list, though with a minuscule 0.2-percent share.
Many low- and mid-range smartphones announced in recent times were shipped with Android 8.0 or 8.1 Oreo, leading to the noted rise in its market share. Another possible factor contributing to this increase are Oreo-based firmware updates released by OEMs for their older devices at over the last several weeks. Google’s Project Treble is expected to play a major role in bringing Android 9 Pie to a larger consumer base in the coming months. The hopes surrounding it are high, especially since Android Oreo was able to capture a major portion of the market at a much faster rate than any of its predecessors. Other older Android versions have continued to shrink, albeit at a slower pace.