iOS 7 Adoption Figures Put Android To Shame

iOS usage stats (20140324)

85% of iOS devices are running iOS 7 or later, Apple claims.

Refreshing its iOS usage numbers on Monday, Apple measured usage of its most recent mobile OS for a seven‑day period ending March 23, 2014.

Next in line, unsurprisingly, is iOS 6 which currently represents 12% of all iOS devices — while just 3% are running older versions of Apple’s mobile OS.

The real comparison, however, is Google’s official Android version distribution — and the results don’t do Android any favors.

A side-by-side comparison between iOS and Android does Google no favors whatsoever.

A side-by-side comparison between iOS and Android does Google no favors whatsoever.

Based on data collected during a seven-day period ending on March 3, 2014, a miniscule 2.5% of Android devices which accessed the Play Store had installed KitKat, the latest version of Google’s mobile OS.

62% percent of devices had Jelly Bean installed, while 35.5% of Android devices were still running earlier releases.

Although Apple places more emphasis on users ugrading — providing firmware upgrades over the air and insisting that app developers keep up with the latest releases — it still serves as an example of how fragmented the Android OS is when compared to iOS.

  • Junk Mail

    It doesn’t matter *when* an OS was released, it matters what the OS can actually do, and in that sense iOS 7 lags far behind even Froyo. It doesn’t even have a proper file system for Pete’s sake! Your phone is tethered to iTunes, one of the most despised programs for Windows users, even for simple tasks like transferring music or photos. And of course Apple doesn’t allow you to install apps unless they approve like some kind of nanny. iOS is a joke of an OS, which is a shame because Apple actually makes some pretty decent hardware.

    • Javi Gomez

      The file system argument, I see. Well I can tell you most don’t care and prefer iOS way of handling it. Would love some more app communication APIs but its still better then being stuck with an old OS till you get a new phone (only to get stuck again). Yes there are Roms, but shouldn’t Goog or Sammy be the ones doing it for you or did you not pay them for a phone?

      My iPhone is not tethered to iTunes.

      I think windows is the software that is most despised by windows users (constant freezing and hangups while coding are fun >_> “Eclipse is not responding” “Chrome has crashed” etc etc.

      I can transfer my music through iTunes or through icloud. Heck with icloud backup I don’t need to worry since the devices state is configured exactly as it was when the backup was uploaded. Music, apps, messages etc. Android “lags” so much here its stuttering.

      iOS does let you install outside apps and prompts you with a warning (is that being a nanny?).

      Get educated , son.

      • Junk Mail

        “iOS does let you install outside apps and prompts you with a warning (is that being a nanny?”

        Really? Ok, please educate me. I want to install the app f.lux without jailbreaking my phone. How would I go about doing that?

      • Javi Gomez

        f.lux is not an app (in the classic sense) but a system wide configuration. Apple does not allow third parties to mess with user preferences. However you just made it clear that it is possible by jail breaking…

      • Junk Mail

        f.lux is not an app? Good one!

      • Javi Gomez

        I can see you can read, but not well. After, “not an app” what do I say kiddo?

      • Junk Mail

        You can not install apps that Apple does not approve of (without jailbreaking). That’s just a fact. I gave you one example, if you don’t like that one there are countless other apps that have been rejected by Apple. Otherwise Cydia wouldn’t exist. Unless you want to claim that none of the “apps” on Cydia are apps??

      • Javi Gomez

        Read, bud. Helps a lot.

        “f.lux is not an app (in the classic sense) but a system wide configuration. Apple does not allow third parties to mess with user preferences. However you just made it clear that it is possible by jail breaking…”

        Any who, you can install apps without jail breaking (gba 4 iOS is one).

      • Junk Mail

        Let’s not lose the forest for the trees…are you honestly trying to argue that you can install *any* app you want on a non jailbroken device? Sorry, but that’s just plain wrong.

      • Javi Gomez

        Dude you really gotta read. Here is the first graders verion.
        You say no apps can install on iPhone without Apples approval.
        I say you can.
        You say a specific app, mention jail break as method (still proves my point by the way).
        I say some yes, gave an example.

        Read. Dueces.

      • Junk Mail

        Still waiting for you to answer my question…How do I install unapproved apps without jailbreaking?

      • Javi Gomez

        Only certain apps can be installed. They trick the profiles of iOS. Essentially they find a loophole which is harder than sticking with apples term or going with cydia so devs don’t do it that way.

    • Tobias Hofmann

      It has a proper file system, but it is not accessible by the user. I don’t miss it. Which taks would you like to do, that you cannot do on your iPhone.

      Example rant: “I would like to program the injection timing in my BMW car. But they use an embedded chip for this. Without using another chip and jailbreaking my car, I cannot change this setting. This is the reason, why BMW is a joke of a car manufacturer.”

      Is this rant correct? Yes. Is it in any way reasonable? No. Why? Because we’re used to our cars just working fine the way the manufacturer produced them for us. We don’t need to “optimize” or “change” internal stuff.

      So why the f*** should it matter, how your phone handles it’s stuff internally? And why would any normal person want to screw around with that? I just don’t get it xD

      • Junk Mail

        I could probably name a hundred reasons, but that would take forever, so I’ll pick a few:
        1) Transferring files (music or photos for example) is incredibly easy on Android, just drag and drop (actually I don’t even have to do this anymore, see point 4). Much better than having to open iTunes and sync your whole music/photo library or transfer files to and from individual apps.
        2) Uploading and downloading files to and from the internet or cloud storage. I’ve found a few workarounds, but it’s a huge hassle compared to Android.
        3) Syncing all my files with Dropbox. Not “starring” files like on iOS, but proper desktop-like syncing so that I have all of my files stored locally on my device and save valuable data bandwidth since it syncs over wifi.
        4) Opening files in another app. I added a movie to one of my video apps only to find out that it couldn’t play .avi files (seriously?). So I had to delete it from the app and re-add it to another app that (thankfully) worked.

      • Tobias Hofmann

        1) Everyone hates iTunes, I use only iTunes Match. When I buy Music on the Mac, iPhone or iPad, it is instantly available on all of them. Transfer any other music from CD in iTunes, sync it to iTunes Match, then it is available. I have not connected my iPhone since at least half a year to my mac. For photos you may be correct. I don’t use iPhoto normally and it was quite exhausting when I wanted to copy some photos from Mac to iPad.
        Result (for me): Music is perfect and easy, Photos is difficult.

        2) There are many examples that I use on a daily basis: Writing a document in Pages, exporting as PDF to Dropbox, uploading. Saving an image from Safari to Photo Roll and sending that image with Mail.
        Examples that I would like to do sometimes, that are not possible: Downloading a sound file into Music. Downloading a youtube video to VLC.
        Result: Pics, Docs is good for me, Vids, Music is not possible. But I can live with that, as long as it is possible on my desktop.

        3)Uhm, this is a choice by the developers of Dropbox, right? I’m not really into the App Store restrictions, but I think they chose not to store the whole directory in the Dropbox app on an iDevice. Storage is more valuable than bandwidth and syncing over 3G or WiFi is fast and cheap enough.
        Result: I love Dropbox and the way it works on iOS.

        4) Tthe app could have implemented a file sharing button, where you can send the file to another app. Also, if VLC didn’t play the file, I would be very surprised and have even more problems than downloading the file a second time. Maybe stick to the standards set by VLC?
        Result: Shitty video app maybe?

        Total: I still think iOS is the best OS for a smartphone. And when it comes to software, I like having the Apple-Nanny. But, to be honest, I can see that iOS is under-performing for the purposes of a tablet, regarding photo/video-capabilities.

        PS: At the moment, there’s no way I would buy a personal computer without having access to the file system.

      • Junk Mail

        I’m curious, would you ever buy a laptop or desktop where you couldn’t access your files like on iOS?

  • Junk Mail

    I’m curious what Apple and Apple fans think of the fact that Snow Leopard, which was released long before the first Android phone, still makes up a very significant percentage of OS X users. Hmmmm….maybe being “newer” doesn’t matter that much after all?

    • Kendall Tawes

      Comparing Smartphones and tablets to a Desktop OS is impractical. Snow Leopard (2009) makes up 19% of the Mac Desktop Market and Windows XP (2001) makes up 30% of Microsoft’s Market.

      The problem with old Android OSes still running on current phones is the lack of security updates (quite the problem with Java security holes and all) and that can happen within a year of an Android device’s lifecycle. Microsoft is only now, rightfully dropping support for XP because OEMs were still installing it on new computers up until 2010 even after 7 came out. While new flagship Androids are well supported initially that support can fall off quickly and there are quite many new and newly sold Android devices that will always lack crucial security fixes that a new or recent device should carry with it.

      • Junk Mail

        Mobile devices don’t have nearly the same level of threat as desktop OSes. You can get malware on Windows just by visiting the wrong website. Android malware requires action by the user, and in over 99% of cases that means downloading pirated apps from 3rd party sources. There is no update in the world that can prevent human stupidity.

      • melci

        And yet 32.8 million Android devices were infected with 65,227 different malware variants in 2012 (and even more last year) according to NQ Mobile vs close to zero iOS devices.

        An example of the viciousness of many Android malware exploits is the Eurograbber malware that swiped $47 million from the bank accounts of 30,000 hapless users last year.

        Then there is the Bmaster command and control botnet malware which has been siphoning between half to 3.5 million dollars off hapless Android users per year.

        And then there is the Google Messaging Service security hole being used by hackers to steal Android users’ data and forcing them to send premium SMS messages with direct financial implications to Android users.

        One big worry is the enormous Master Key security hole affecting 99% of all Android devices sold since 2008 that can give malware full access to all system and user data and control phone and SMS functions and turn the Android device into an always-on, always-moving, hard to detect botnet zombie.

        This Master Key vulnerability can unfortunately only be patched by manufacturers releasing new firmware for their devices which is regrettable considering the dismal record manufacturers and Carriers have of releasing updates for Android devices.

      • Junk Mail

        So it’s Androids fault that people install cracked apps and get malware? I believe in personal responsibility. If you install malware that’s on you and you have to live with the consequences. I don’t need a nanny to protect me. But I’d be fine with Apple blocking 3rd party apps if they weren’t do restrictive on which apps they let into the app store.

      • melci

        Unfortunately there has been plenty of malware come through Google’s Play Store because of its “open” anything goes philosophy. For example the Cleaner hybrid Trojan hosted on the store which powned Android phones as well as using them as a launching platform to inject malware into user’s Windows PCs not to mention the “bad news” malware which was downloaded from the Google Play Store up to 9 million times.

      • Junk Mail

        There’s the odd bad apple, but that’s true of the Apple store as well.
        http://appleinsider.com/articles/13/03/05/ios-apps-leak-more-personal-data-than-do-android-apps—report

      • melci

        There is not a single malware app for iOS mentioned in that article – apps that ask for permission to access your location because they want to display your location on a map do not malware make – duh.

        In contrast, back in 2012, there were over 65,000 malware app variants infecting over 32 million Android devices. That is more than a few bad apples, and no you can’t use the excuse that most of them might be from app stores other than the Play Store when on the other hand you are proclaiming the superiority of Android precisely BECAUSE you can side-load apps from other sources.

      • Junk Mail

        And updating to the newest version of Android fixes this??

      • melci

        It certainly fixes many security holes – absolutely.

      • Jordan Cox

        You’re a troll. Get the hell out of here.

      • Junk Mail

        Thank you for your valuable contribution to the discussion.

  • Junk Mail

    Newer is not always better. My iPad 2 lags horribly on iOS 7, even after a factory reset. I want to go back to iOS 6 or better yet iOS 5. How would I go about doing that? Oops, that’s right, the Apple-nanny won’t let me…

    • Amit Samy

      The only constant thing in life is change! Learn it bozzo!
      Apple is the only company which has the best software and hardware under one roof. If you don’t like, you can still use the nanny-Google android crap!

    • Kendall Tawes

      I don’t believe you have an iPad 2 considering you previous anti-Apple post previously but in case you do. First make sure you update to 7.1 as that has improved performance for old iOS devices. Also make sure it’s not too full of stuff. I noticed mine got slower recently when I bogged mine with too many photos. 1 GB or more of free space is recommended. Next if things still are slow try turning off the animations. Go to Settings > General > Accessability > Reduce Motion and turn that on. That should really help if you still feel it is too slow. I haven’t noticed mine being slow other than when I filled mine up too much briefly and iOS 7 made Safari is much faster than previous iOSes so for much of my iPad habits it’s been good.

      Also rolling back to an OS isn’t usually an easy job on any device. You can downgrade with some difficulty to iOS 6 but it’s probably not worth it. It’s not like you can just flip a switch on an Android though. The Galaxy S3 had some fairly big problems with 4.3 recently and when some people tried rolling back to 4.1.2 it bricked their phones or 4.1.2 had crippling bugs like not being able to go into settings. Others found there was no way to retrieve their old data. Others found the only way to properly backup required rooting the phone. Needless to say if Apple is a Nanny to iOS then Android is a latchkey kid.

      • Junk Mail

        My posts are not anti-Apple. I have many Apple products and that’s why I’m so frustrated with iOS. If I didn’t own Apple products I wouldn’t care. I’ve done all of your suggestions, still lags like crazy especially when typing. Downgrading to iOS 6 on the iPad 2 is NOT possible. Period. Apple just wants me to spend more on the latest device when it worked perfectly fine on iOS 5 and iOS 6.

        Downgrading is fairly easy on Android. You can downgrade the S3 from 4.3 to 4.1.2 you just can’t downgrade the bootloader. XDA has some good guides on this and is always a good place to consult for instructions on how to do this kind of stuff. I have the S3, but I haven’t noticed any bugs on 4.3. The S3 is an exception though, most Android devices are very easy to downgrade especially if you have a Nexus device.

      • bigrafx

        As per text input lagging try going to Settings – General – Reset – Reset Keyboard Dictionary
        My iPhone 4S was 4-5 seconds behind inputting any text anywhere and that fixed it for me.

      • Junk Mail

        Thanks, I’ll give that a try

    • melci

      My iPad 2 runs iOS 7 perfectly well. I don’t know what you are complaining about?

      I couldn’t imagine going back to the earlier iOS 6 – the Control Centre, better multi-tasking, shared photo streams, new Apple Maps, etc are all things that work great on the iPad that I wouldn’t want to give up anytime soon.

      • Junk Mail

        Sure, and for me Android works perfectly well, so I don’t know what Apple fans are complaining about?

        See, we are all entitled to our opinions, but what works for you might not work for someone else.

      • melci

        I was simply pointing out that your own supposed personal anecdote of experience of lag with your iPad 2 running iOS 7 was atypical.
        I would have agreed with you if you’d said iOS 7.0 running on an iPhone 4 was laggy, but even there, with the 7.1 update, that 3.5 year old phone suddenly has a new lease of life with all lag gone.

      • Junk Mail

        Atypical?https://www.google.ca/search?client=chrome-mobile&rlz=1Y3XIUG_enCA571CA571&espvd=1&ei=PRkyU4bzMsa9qQHT8ICwAg&q=ipad+2+lags+ios+7+site%3Adiscussions.apple.com&oq=ipad+2+lags+ios+7+site%3Adiscussions.apple.com&gs_l=mobile-gws-serp.3…19123.20991.0.21238.8.8.0.0.0.2.209.1090.1j6j1.8.0….0…1c.1.37.mobile-gws-serp..8.0.0.enjpbknikRU

        Look, updates often slow things down, all I ask is for the *choice* to downgrade. I paid good money for the iPad, I should be able to use it how *I* want not how Apple wants.

        By the way, I find it hilarious that just because I said something negative about Apple, people think I must be lying.

      • Junk Mail

        Interesting. I just wrote you a response, but it seems I’ve been censored by this website. I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised given Apple’s love of censorship.

        P.S. I tried commenting on my iPhone but the browser crashed 5 times while logging in (twice with safari, twice with chrome and twice with dolphin). Switched to my S3 and now I’m able to comment.

      • melci

        Err, Apple doesn’t run this website…

      • Junk Mail

        Obviously…never said it did.

      • melci

        Quote: “it seems I’ve been censored by this website. I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised given Apple’s love of censorship”

      • Junk Mail

        And?

      • melci

        Ball’s in your court Mr Junk Mail.

      • Junk Mail

        Huh?

      • melci

        You haven’t explained why you reckon Apple somehow censored your post on this website.

      • melci

        More dubious anecdotes from an Android fan who for some reason owns an iPhone and an iPad as well as a Galaxy S3.

        I won’t bore you with how terrible my Huawei X1 Android phone was trying to browse the web or run apps on its terrible 240×320 2.7″ screen and 512MB of RAM.

      • Junk Mail

        If you don’t believe me, perhaps you could help me out. From your iPhone or iPad click on the Google login symbol (log out if you’re already logged in) and let me know if you’re able to log in. It’s crashed on my iPhone and iPad but I’d like to know if it’s just me.

      • Meill

        Just logged in via Google on my iPad 2 running iOS 7.1 and posted this reply without problems (and without lag)
        Looks like it is just you.

      • Junk Mail

        Thanks. Which browser?

      • melci

        Safari

      • Junk Mail

        Thanks for your help. I don’t know what the problem was. Maybe I just had too many apps running in the background? Oh well, probably for the best, typing on that iOS keyboard one letter at a time is painful compared to Swype for Android.

      • melci

        Actually I find Swype far slower having to drag the one finger all over the keyboard to hit each letter. Far quicker to do multi-finger touch typing.

      • Junk Mail

        If you prefer typing each letter individually there is always Swiftkey. Personally I couldn’t imagine going back to typing out each letter when I can type about twice as fast with Swype. Obviously it takes a bit of practice and I don’t know how much experience you have with Android outside of your old crappy Huwaei phone (not a good representation of Android btw).

        Rumor has it that Apple is in talks to bring Swype to the iPhone, so hopefully iPhone users won’t be left out for much longer.

      • melci

        Not sure how you think having to drag over every key with just one finger could possibly be faster than touch typing with multiple fingers at once – touch-typing is a bit like a multi-tasking OS compared to a single-tasking OS. It is far faster hitting the next key with a finger already hovering over it than having to drag one finger all the way from the first to the next key.

        Sure Swype could be faster than hunt and peck single finger typing, but multi-finger touch typing is a skill well honed by millions the world over and pays dividends in the end.

        ps. My Huawei X1 was indeed crappy, but it also represents the kind of Android device used by the majority of Android users worldwide. Only a third of Android phones are high-end devices like your Galaxy S3.

      • Will

        Do you hate everything that Android does but iOS can’t? You must be the only person in the world who believes Swiftkey is slower.

      • melci

        No, I’ve tried Swype and been unimpressed, but I’m willing to be convinced if you can explain how dragging one finger laboriously over every letter is faster than multi-finger touch typing. I am genuinely curious.

      • Will

        Simple, it doesn’t have to be exactly above the letter you want. Just slide away. It’s smart enough to recognise your most used words.

        And the thing is, it just works (don’t take it from me, check the reviews).

      • GadgetCanada1

        “so I don’t know what Apple fans are complaining about?”
        You’re the only one complaining here.

  • stefnagel

    Upgrades matter. Steve Gibson suggests that, without superb crypto, Apple devices would be skrewed already. This level of security requires high grade chip and firmware crypto; this barely fits on a phone but probably not smaller devices.

    Search steve gibson ios security 446. Great bits: “The protection Apple offers is just beautiful…. To actually close the system and to ward off what would otherwise be a massive assault … they have had to take security very seriously…. Nothing short of this is enough…. Apple’s total respect for the user’s security and privacy in the design …”

    Android? Not so good. Don’t miss Gibson’s paean to Apple security. It matters.

  • sracer

    How many of those who upgraded to iOS 7 did so solely to get the fix for the SSL bug in 6? (Apple released a fix for iOS 6 but only made it available for devices that could NOT upgrade to 7) Or to reclaim 1+GB for the updater file that was automatically downloaded to every iOS device capable of installing 7?

    • Junk Mail

      I HATE that the update downloaded without my permission. I’ve avoided updating my devices because of some of the problems people have been having and no option to downgrade! In one case that was not possible because my iPad died and I had to restore it, but I wasn’t allowed to restore it without updating! So now on my iOS 6 devices I’m stuck with over 3 GB of “other” storage, part of which is the downloaded firmware and no easy way to get rid of it! Why does Apple make iOS so frustrating to use?

    • melci

      If that’s what it takes to ensure as many iOS users as possible upgrade to the latest security patches and new features, then it’s a small price to pay to avoid the dreadful state of OS updates and gaping security vulnerabilities being maliciously exploited on the Android platform.

      • Junk Mail

        So you agree with Apple that users shouldn’t have a choice?

      • melci

        So you agree that Android users with new phones should have no choice of being able to upgrade to the latest OS months after a new OS release, or in way too many case never because of their carrier or phone manufacturer?

      • Junk Mail

        No I don’t, but it’s not the end of the world either. If Im really desperate to be on the latest release I’ll just flash a custom rom, but so far I don’t see the point. The differences between jelly bean and kit kat are miniscule anyways. My next phone will probably be a Nexus anyways (about half the price of most comparable phones).
        Well I answered your question, you’re turn.

      • melci

        Flashing a custom rom is not exactly something the hundreds of millions of non-geek normal people can do who happened to buy an Android phone is it?

        Dismissing the advances in the latest version of the Android OS as being “minuscule” is a pretty sad cop-out in your efforts to minimise this foundational fault in the Android platform.

      • Junk Mail

        Why would I care what hundreds of millions of “non-geek normal people” do with their phone.

        Can you name some features of kit kat not present in jelly bean?

        Still haven’t answered my question though I keep answering yours.

      • melci

        You should care because it demonstrates that you are in the minority and shows why Apple’s policy is the best for the vast majority of users. (There I’ve answered your question)

        Doing a simple Google tells me KitKat boasts many new features:
        – Ok Google
        – Immersive mode
        – faster multi-tasking
        – improved security
        – printing framework
        – storage Access framework
        – system wide closed captioning
        – smarter caller ID
        – prioritised contacts
        – Bluetooth MAP support
        – Chromecast support
        – Device manager built-in
        – New Downoad app
        – easy home switching
        – email app refresh
        – HDR+ photography
        etc etc

        Do you really want to argue there aren’t any advantages in upgrading to the new version of Android that Google has sweated over the last year or more? Really, it is such a sad situation that you’d be so desperate to dismiss the tragic state of affairs that the majority of Android users find themselves in of not being able to upgrade to the latest OS that you’d resort to such ludicrous arguments.

  • Jared Persinger

    Wow, I’ve had Kit Kat for around two months now……. I do have to appluad apple for updating their devices quickly and efficeintly, Android is pretty about fragmentation and OEMs could take cues from Apple.

  • http://exposedtolight.com billraab

    Yawn… just buy what you like, be happy with it. Let others buy what they like, and be happy with it… yawn. Turf wars are nothing but silliness but far too prevalent. Honestly who gives a rats behind? I have an iPad running iOS7 sitting right next to my Nexus 4 running KitKat. They both do what I need them to… they both did on the previous versions of their respective OS too.

About the author

Luke DormehlLuke Dormehl is a UK-based journalist and author, with a background working in documentary film for Channel 4 and the BBC. He is the author of The Formula: How Algorithms Solve All Our Problems, And Create More and The Apple Revolution, both published by Penguin/Random House. His tech writing has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, Techmeme, and other publications. He'd like you a lot if you followed him on Twitter.

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