Oct 31, 2020 | Updated: 09:48 PM EDT

Android Fragmentation

Dec 16, 2013 12:06 PM EST


Android fragmentation is a concern which variants of Android’s platform which may result in devices to lose ability to run apps that are written for the Android SDK. There is a significant amount of custom version of Android’s platform emerging. Interoperability is also an area of concern which may hinder potential for Android applications built on the SDK. Samsung and other major companies may weigh out Apple concerns with Google dominating OS.

Google / Visual.ly

The Android SDK currently has over 1,600 devices. Samsung has the majority lead within the Android market. Fragmentation occurs when a combination of software and hardware do not provide a consistent, top-level experience for the vast majority of its user-base.The cause of fragmentation can vary.

The smartphone mobile device population in 2013, for the first time, will rapidly grow with traffic from smartphones greater than traffic from laptops, a main driver of mobile data traffic for years. The challenges impose slowing growth, as well as the upside being consequences of dynamic shifts in technology that either drive sales or constrain them.

Smartphones did not go mainstream until more consumers from developed markets were able to use the Internet at faster 3G speeds transforming technologies as a result. Mobile market growth is being driven by demand developing world, led by rapid mobile adoption in China and India. Subscribers are expected to reach 6.9 billion by the end of 2013 and 8 billion by the end of 2016.

There is question of the impact of Android fragmentation on Android users. With the release of Google’s software, vendors which promote its platform will further impact consumption rates. Vendors will see Android features as opportunities and continue to evolve the capabilities and release software updates. It is a time consuming process. Apple does update directly to its end users which eliminates the middleman in the process.

Android users are also missing out on features due to fragmentation concerns. Android fragmentation issues have changed a lot of features on the Android OS which have been moved to Google Play Services. Both models have been compared with having benefits and downsides. It won’t be possible to make a choice of the two. Fragmentation currently is running a different version of the Android OS. In recent versions, Google is segmenting these versions with its "Ok Google" with devices 4.3 and higher. But this is still just segmentation.

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