Android OS – 40 Amazing Stats and Facts

Android, the most used open-source mobile OS, is now a pioneer in innovative mobile technology at zero-cost. The Android OS is based on Linux-kernel and is the world’s most used operating system, powering millions of devices like smartphones, mobiles, tablets, and even some desktops.

After the launch of its first commercial device with Android OS in the year 2008, it has made an overwhelming growth in the market. Thanks to its open-source code, manufacturers can customize it as per their hardware and theme, allowing thousands of versions of the core OS, empowering our devices.

General Statistics About Android OS

  • As of May 2019, Google announced that it had over 2.5 billion active users surpassing every other popular OS. (Android)
  • The share of Android OS worldwide is at 40.44%, outshining even MS-Windows at 35.32%.            (StatCounter)
  • Considering Mobile phones & Tablets, Android crowns the market with 73.01% share, as of September 2019. (StatCounter)
  • In a report published by Gartner in 2017, the devices shipped with Android OS were 54.16%. (Wikipedia)
  • Reports published by Wikimedia indicate that Android OS tops as a search client with about 31% of users across the internet using an android device. (Wikimedia)
  • Android has about 76.2% share among smartphone units sold in the market, with over 3 million devices. (StatCounter)
  • By September 2019,  Android Pie 9.0 has a share of about 32.69% as the most used Android OS on phones, followed by version 8.1 at 16.09% and version 6.0 at 13.42%. (StatCounter)
  • For tablets, Android lags at 27% market share, stomped by iOS at 72.71%.  In Tablet OS, Lollipop/5.1 shares 22.31%, closely followed by version 4.4/KitKat with 21.48% share. (StatCounter)
  • As of June 2019, the number of applications on the Google Play Store(Android App Market) is over 2.7 million. (Statista)

As we can see from the tons of stats above, Android OS is breathing life in the majority of smartphones across the globe. One of the research conducted showed that richer countries prefer Apple phones over Android, which seems relevant why Android OS is so prevalent in Asian countries.

Android Facts and Stats

After knowing some general statistics about the Android OS, let us see some more facts about it. We will begin our list from the dawn of the Android OS to its subsidiary apps and then plunge into some controversial points.

Some day to day facts about Android OS

1. Android Inc was established in Oct 2003

Google bought Android Inc. in 2005. The initial market strategy was to sell it as an OS optimized for cameras, but with time, they started working on it making it a dedicated OS for mobile devices.

The early prototype in 2006 was similar to an old blackberry phone with a landscape screen and a qwerty keypad. After the successful trial, a conglomerate of big giants like HTC, Samsung, Motorola, Qualcomm, etc., decided to create a fully optimized and free OS for mobile devices.

The First Android Device was HTC Dream G1 with Android 1.0 in the year 2008. Later on, Android 1.5(Cupcake) was released. With time, more features were added, and it was optimized continuously for the latest technology.

Since 2006, a total of 26 different versions of Android OS have been released.

(Source: Phone Arena)

2. The Story of Android being Diabetic

With all the sweet and sugary names given to each stock version of Android OS, people often wonder the reason for that.

In an interview with CNN, one of the spokespeople in Google revealed the naming convention to be an internal team matter and discarded it as being too difficult to explain.

Later on, during the release of Android KitKat, Google released a video where they revealed that since Android OS induces sweetness in our lives, they name its version after desserts or sweet delicacies like Cupcakes, Donuts, Eclairs, and so on.

All the version names are in alphabetical order with the current version Android Pie 9.0.

(Source: Indian Express)

3. The Journey of Google Play Devices and the Start of Android One

In the year 2010, Nexus devices were launched by Google. Succeeding this, other companies like HTC, Samsung, and Motorola also implemented a stock Android OS provided by Google instead of their own version.

However, in 2015, the program was eventually halted. Unlike an official statement, this program has been overshadowed by Google’s Android One project.

Similar to the previous project, Android One’s main aim was to target low tier devices in developing countries. The initial launch of Android One was targeted for most South-Asian countries.

Till now, many new mobile companies have integrated into the Android One program. However, this program too has stalled as of now.

(Source: Ars Technica)

4. Android is a Humanoid Robot!

Beep Bop… The official mascot of Android OS is a humanoid robot. Irina Blok designed the logo of Android in 2007 when the OS was launched.

Also, the official mascot isn’t called an Android but a Bugdroid.

The idea was to create a logo that represents the open-source ideology of their OS as well as something the users relate to. It was just an interpretation among the internal development team until Google officially adopted it under a Creative Common License.

(Source: Irina Blok Website)

5. Microsoft earns about $2 billion Royalty from Android devices being sold!

You’ve heard it correctly. Microsoft grosses up to $15 from each Android device sold in the market.

These all boil down to patent royalties as Microsoft claims that Android OS infringes its certain software patents. Instead of fighting all along, Android happily pays the sum and continues the business without any hassle.

Microsoft now provides over 70 Android manufacturers with its preloaded apps under the contract.

(Source: How-To Geek)

6. Let us have a ride in the Android Lawn

Google has made a yard for every Android version near the Googleplex. The only odd man out was Alex, an android puppy, which was stolen in 2009.

There have been a couple of similar incidences where the statues have been either damaged or stolen. In one case, Android Jelly Beans’ head popped off due to summer heat, following which someone took the jelly beans from inside.

(Source: Wikipedia)

7. Android 3.0 has almost 0% market share

Shocking isn’t it! If you review the official market share provided by Google, Android Honeycomb/3.0 has less than 0.1% market share and is not even mentioned in their list.

This is owing to the fact that Android 3.0 was released too soon after Gingerbread and had no time to optimize for many features, including the auto-screen adjustments.

Devices specifically made for Android 3.0 were only a couple of tablets. The issues were so persistent that manufacturers discarded it and created their own versions. The only known device to ever run it is the Motorola Xoom. Sad story for honeybees, indeed!

(Source: Developers Android)

8. Three Android-based Smartphones orbit the Earth

Well, you’ve heard it! The space bots are already there. In 2006, NASA, using Google’s Nexus S, launched three smartphones in the Earth’s orbit.

Known as PhoneSats, these smartphones are surprisingly powered by AA batteries instead of standard Li-ion power batteries.

These PhoneSats are used to monitor the workability of smartphones into space, opening a whole new venture to be explored by citizens, academics, and commercial organizations.

(Source: SServi NASA)

9. Android Brings a new Easter Egg in Every Update

What can be more thrilling other than using an OS on your phone? How about finding some Easter eggs in the OS?

It all began in the year 2010, with the release of Android Gingerbread. One of the leads in the team, Diane Hackborn, with the help of one of the artist friend, created a zombie-themed portrait, and concealed it in the OS as an Easter-egg.

This rolled on the trend, and now every version of Android OS has one crazy Easter Egg hidden in it. However, in the modern OS, it is quite easy to find them.

 Just go to the About Section in the Android settings and click multiple times on it. This will open the Easter Egg, and you will find some exciting games or animations there.

(Source: Android Authority)

10. Android is the biggest examples of how free Open-Source License can take over the market

In the recent technology wars, many big individual companies now misuse the patent system into bullying and submission of new businesses that are seen as threats. In such a period, working with open source code and taking over such bullying giants requires valor.

Being an open-source code, not only manufacturers, but individuals too can customize their Android experience. In the top phones in 2016, in the UK, France, and Germany, about 70% of apps in Android phones were from different sources except Google.

(Source: Android OS Site)

11. Android allows supplementary App-Stores to flourish

Instead of creating a monopoly of its own app store Google Play Store, Android will enable manufacturers to add their own app stores in the device. Popular examples include Samsung galaxy apps, Mi store, GetJar, Yandex, etc.

Although they are not directly downloadable from the app store due to compatibility issues, manufacturers are free to preload them into Android phones.

(Source: Android OS Site)

Creative Apps given by Google’s Android

12. Android Phones Help in Tracking Traffic

One of the most sophisticated methods through which Google Maps work is by using Android Phones. The whole thing depends on the enabled GPS in your while using the Google Map services.

With the GPS ON, Google Maps regularly feeds the location info to the servers, which then collects data regarding the number of Android smartphones in the local vicinity. This gives a good picture of how many users are concentrated in a place, thereby showing traffic stats.

This feature has been quite controversial for privacy concerns. But, Google has clarified time and again that this data is entirely anonymous, and doesn’t reveal users’ personal info.

(Source: Google Blog)

13. Get Something Extra out of your SmartWatch with Android Wear

It’s not a watch, and neither a smartphone! Then what it is?

Android Wear encompasses the usual functions of a watch as well as the smartphone fashioning a Smartwatch. Powered by an Android OS, this watch has many exciting features like appointment alerts, fitness alerts, stock performance, order cab, monitor heart rate, measures fitness routines, and so on.

Surprisingly, the Smartwatch is supported on almost all eligible devices, regardless of the operating system.

(Source: Google Blog)

14. Android is Powered by a Complex cum accessible Linux-based OS

Android is based on an open-source Linux OS. The use of Linux kernel allows Android to implement better security features and eases the device manufacturers’ work in developing hardware based on it.

Android utilizes Java API Framework for apps in Android devices.

(Source: Developer. Android)

15. Android has one the most secure OS in the Market

With over 8 billion apps being scanned every day by Google Play secure, Android is bolstering to provide the most secure platform to millions of devices running it.

The Android OS follows a four-point security checklist with goals of saving data safely, enforce secure communications, regularly update security providers, and strictly monitor app permissions.

Stock Android devices like Google Pixel are on par in security, with private players like iOS, owing to their regular updates and security patches.

But still, it is also one of the most vulnerable OS in the market. This is mostly the fault of collaborative companies who are lazy in providing regular security patches, unlike Pixel devices.

(Source: Developer. Android)

16. Android now makes life easier for people with hearing issues

With the use of complex audio enhancement technology, Android now comes with a sound amplifier to aid millions of people with hearing loss. The amplifier helps in filtering the loud background noises, allowing us to focus on human voices.

The filter uses complex methods to focus on individual sounds, allowing people with hearing issues to focus on human voices rather than surrounding chatters. It can do all of these in a live chat, phone calls, and also while using a microphone.

(Source: Google Blog)

17. Now Transcribe Speech into Text On air

With more than 100 million people suffering from mild or severe hearing issues, it is time to do something about it using technology. For that, Android comes with a Live Transcribe application.

This application is a sophisticated version of a speech to text converter. It can not only transcribe speech to text but also reply the speaker as you type. It has advanced filters and sound indicators which can detect even a pause in speech, and then send feedback signals consequently.

(Source: Google Blog)

18. Beat the Drum with a new Fitness monitoring app

Fitness app by Android now comes with preset fitness plans to kickstart health resolutions. It can log your walks, runs, bike rides, and also has a point system to reward you. The harder your physical activity, the more point you get rewarded.

So, what are you waiting for?

(Source: Google)

19. Android OS now empowers Smart Cars

Is it possible that a car can be smart? Can it detect collisions, traffic, manage auto-drive, and so? Indeed! It can even do things more than that.

Android Auto empowers many cars and vehicles, making them safer on roads. It has an auto-navigation system that not only helps with traffic, safer routes, etc. but also aids with route music management and communication.

Many big auto companies like Audi, Volvo, Chevrolet, Aston Martin, Ford, Fiat have integrated Android Auto, and are also planning to use Android OS in their Smart Cars.

(Source: Google Blog)

20. Controlling your Digital Screen-time with Android

Many of us are quite tired of our habit of using mobile technologies over the limit. Even after a stressful work shift, many of us get hooked on our phones overnight, thereby affecting our health seriously.

To help users, Google Pixel comes with the Android application that tracks our mobile screen time, monitors app usages, and such digital habits.

It also has a Wind Down feature to reduce overusing phone late-night with a reminder to turn the phone off, dimming screen, and setting time restriction on apps. It is even linked to parental controls allowing us to restrict the screen time of kids for their well-being.

(Source: Digital Wellbeing App)

21. Enjoy Augmented reality with Android’s ARCore

With so many technological innovations in the market, we aren’t far away from seeing a T-rex gulp us via holograms. Since we cannot reach there till now, we have to work around using an AR, i.e., Augmented Reality.

It is a form of filtering in cameras that allow us to input 3d objects in the live capturing. Some of the best examples are the animated filters in apps like Snapchat, Instagram, and many such video shooting apps.

To enhance this feature as well as allow regular folks to experience augmented reality, Android announced ARCore. With full free of cost support and integration in your apps, ARCore enriches the developers with their AR technology.

You can simply download AR services from the play store. It is currently supported for only a few devices and is supposed to be available for many more in future.

(Source: Android Central)

22. New Android Feature helps to keep children away from the dangers of the Internet

The Internet can be very refreshing or even scary. With the evolving technology in the hands of both good as well as bad people, it has now become a significant concern among parents to keep their kids away from these online threats.

To help parents, Android OS now has a feature improving advanced parental control. Family Link is a tool for your smartphones to monitor and restrict harmful apps and content from your kids’ devices.

The procedure is effortless once you link it with a child’s account. After that, you can approve/restrict certain apps, induce parental controls, regulate their device usage, track their locations, and other such stuff.

(Source: Android Central)

Top 10 Facts about Android Q aka version 10.0

With the upcoming Android OS 10.0, brand new features, security improvements, QOL updates, productivity apps, and many more things are going to be innovated in it.

Let us check some of the exciting things about the upcoming Android 10.0.

23. Android does have few non-sugary Versions, including Android 10.0

Well, people who have used Android from the beginning might have diabetes as of now, isn’t it? Just kidding! Contrary to its trend of naming its version after a sugary sweet or dessert, they do have few versions who’ll balance the sugar in your blood.

The first two APIs of Android OS, version 1.0 and 1.1 were not named after anything sweet. On top of that, Android will now break this trend with the release of Version 10.0.

Android 10.0 will be simply called Android Q. Yes! It’s true. There were many speculations as to why this conviction was broken.

The reason stated by Google regarding it is due to the difficulty in understanding versions owing to their names. Since Android is a global platform, people of all color and languages will be using it.

In some languages, letters L and R are no different in spoken language. There are other issues related to the pronunciation of the entire words too. Due to this, it was a ruckus among developers as well as userbase who had difficulty remembering them.

To help them, Google has now decided to keep things simple. Some tongue-twisting desserts start with Q, but then the problem will become tenfold compared to above, as majority of people even haven’t heard of these desserts.

Overall, it is best to start a new trend with a simple naming convention that not only gives an insight into its version but is also easily accessible by people of all languages.

(Source: Wikipedia, Google Blog)

24. Android 10 now has a new brand logo

The Android logo has been already changed once in the year 2014. With the trend of the new naming scheme, Google now has decided to change the look too.

In the new look, the poor Bugdroid now loses its torso and limbs( #insert R2D2 sad beeps). The new-look holds the Bugdroid’s head with a parrot green color with fonts in black.

(Source: Google Blog)

25. Android Q is already launched in the market as a beta version

With so much hype about its release this year, Google already has launched a beta version of Android Q. This version is available since March 13, 2019, restricted to Pixel phones.

Since then, about six releases of the beta version have been done. Around 11 OEMs partnered for the 3rd beta version testing.

As on September 3, 2019, Android 10.0 or Android Q was officially launched on selected Pixel phones. From there, there are a series of devices to date that fully support and functions on Android 10.

After January 31, 2020, it will be mandatory for all released devices under Google’s certification to use Android 10-based OS.

(Source: Developer. Android)

26. Android Q comes with tons of QOL features, Security patches, and Privacy Enhancements

As expected, we will see tons of brand new and renewed/improvised features in Android Q. The key focus has been over the security of the devices, user privacy, digital well-being, performance enhancements, multi-tasking, enhanced 5G support, and many more.

It also has improvised support for usability features like gestures, navigation controls, Android Auto, Focus Mode, etc.

(Source: Android Official Site)

27. Android Q will power the World’s Foldable Smartphones

In the race to launch a commercially available and practical foldable smartphone, many failures have been seen by mobile companies, including giants like Samsung and Huawei.

The issues range from having sturdy hardware to an adaptable firmware. In the latter case, Android Q has already declared its support for foldable phones. The first foldable smartphone to be powered by stock Android 10 will be Samsung’s Galaxy Fold.

Before the launch of the device, in April 2019, owing to issues with hardware quality as per critics, they indefinitely postponed the release. The notable part is that even on a normal Android 10 smartphone, you can review how the foldable screen will look.

(Source: Android Developer’s Blog)

28. Enjoy superior Multi-Tasking using Android Bubbles

The essential demand for multitasking is in the market of every smart device. To enhance it in Android 10, they have included a Bubble feature in it.

These Bubbles are designed to be part of your current screen, carrying over some functionality of the background apps. This is very useful in the case of messaging apps. However, the apps need to integrate the support for the Bubble program beforehand.

(Source: Developer Blog)

29. Restrict Snooping apps in Android 10

From time and time, third-party apps have been able to breach a lot of loopholes and spy on user data. This has been more prevalent in smartphones. With open-source codes like Android, the issues are more frequent.

To restrict app access, Android 10 comes with Scoped Storage code. With this feature, apps are allowed to access only their own folders created on the device. This is like sandboxing them to their own folder.

This will prevent them from gaining access to other files in your storage. They will need additional permission to access info outside of their sandbox. However, apps with frequent data collections still need some workaround, making it harder for them to steal user data.

The access to users’ location info, wireless scanning, serial number/IMEI code, un-interacted apps launch, and many such privacy issues prevalent in previous versions of Android are now patched.

(Source: Developer Blog)

30. Safeguarding the Storage with Enhanced Encryption

Protecting user data has always been challenging. High-end encryption needs too much processing power, which handheld smartphones may not provide, especially low-end devices, which are used mostly across the globe.

As per their claims, Android Adiantum is super optimized for mid-range devices to provide them proper encryption and can lower the processing costs. In their tests on ARM Cortex A7, Adiantum is about 5x faster than the AES-256-XTS.

It is going to be fully supported overall phones with Android 10 and its supported hardware.

(Source: Google Security Blog)

31. AI-Assisted Smart Replies

We are already familiar with the Smart Reply feature in Gmail. Using it, we can generate automated messages like thumbs up, okay, I am busy, thanks for replying, and so on.

Similar to that, Android 10 has integrated Smart Reply in the entire OS. From now on, you can use the AI to assist you in replying to particular messages. If there are any links in the message like YouTube links, Map links, etc., it will allow us to open them directly.

Currently, messaging apps like WhatsApp, Facebook messenger, Twitter, etc. are fully functioning with this feature. If you still don’t like it, you can easily disable it.

(Source: Developer Blog)

32. No Buttons in Android Q. Time to use Gestures

Yes! You have heard it right. Android Q will no longer support the Navigation Buttons, which were usually placed at the bottom of your smartphones.

Instead of that, they are enabling gesture-based navigation. This means that the functions of Back, Home, and Recent App will now have to be performed using gestures. This will allows users to enjoy a full-screen interface. All the apps will have to be optimized for this.

(Source: Android Developer’s Blog)

Whacky Facts about Android

In the road to create a successful product, brand, and its image, entrepreneurs face a lot of thorns in their way. Be it belittling attitude from big companies, or some personal controversies, these pimp talks have known to destroy many careers.

Android is no different when it comes to that. It has been surrounded by a lot of ups and down, regardless of which, they are the world’s most used operating system today.

Let us see some of those ups and downs in the journey of Android OS and even some weird circumstances Android had to face.

33. Android faced early eviction from its office

In 2004, failing to appease investors and with a lack of funding, the Android office was going to be evicted. In this strenuous times, Steve Perlman, a close friend of founder Andy Rubin helped him with an anonymous $10,000 in cash and later on wired even more money to help him.

(Source: Business Insider)

34. Nokia CEO’s snarky remark on Android

When Nokia CEO was asked why they did not switch to Android OS, he came up with a very snarky reply smearing Android as a boy peeing in pants for keeping himself warm. CEO or CE-OH…

And we can clearly see now how the tables have turned now.

(Source: Business Insider)

35. Android had to face a lot of Downplay in the beginning

No startup till now has faced zero criticism and downplaying the attitude of big companies. Android was no different.

When it started, companies like Symbian, Microsoft, Apple, and Nokia did lots of downplaying, suggesting that Android isn’t worth their time. And now we see how tables have turned!

(Source: Wikipedia)

36. The first Android phone had no earphone jacks

The first android phone HTC Dream was too simple from current smartphone’s standards. It had no earphone jack. The look was similar to Blackberry phones.

But now, Android devices have evolved too much.

(Source: Wikipedia)

37. Android had lots of Issues with App-Piracy in the past

Like always, new systems have high chances of getting hacked or pirated. Android faced it too. For now, they have resolved it, allowing paid apps to earn their fair share.

(Source: Wired, Wikipedia)

38. Samsung could’ve bought Android

In late 2004, a team of 8 members of the Android team went to Samsung to ask for funding, which was rejected by the 20 Samsung executives. It was followed by few odd remarks like, “are you high? What 6 men are going to do?,  revealed Andy Rubin as cited in below book.

(Source: Amazon Book)

39. Google Play Edition phones got a very sad farewell

Google tried to launch a dedicated product with dedicated Android stock, with Motorola Xoom being the first of its kind. However, owing to issues with uniqueness in hardware and firmware with other Android phone manufacturers at half the price nailed the program into the coffin.

(Source: Ars Technica)

40. Android had some rundowns and legal issues with Oracle

Since the year 2010, Oracle and Google were fighting in courts regarding usage of Java API in Android code. Oracle claimed that Google had used the Java Code in Android unfairly, claiming a whopping $6 billion.

The case finally got ended in the year 2016 after several trials and ended up in Google’s favor.

(Source: Reuters, Ars Technica)

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