PornHub Steps in to Expose Android Version Stats That Google Won’t


For most of Android’s history, Google updated its developer dashboards like clockwork every 30 days or so. This data included the proportion of devices running each version of the OS. However, it stopped updating the dashboards about a year ago. The last update came in May during Google I/O, but now we have some new Android version stats, and the source is somewhat unexpected. PornHub has released its 2019 year in review, and that includes a look mobile OS versions. 

The dashboard numbers are intended to help developers understand what sort of Android devices were out there in the world. In addition to OS versions, the data included screen sizes and OpenGL versions. That helped developers decide what features and devices to target in their apps. The Android version statistics got the most attention, and it wasn’t all good. Various websites pointed to the continued existence of ancient versions like Ice Cream Sandwich as evidence that Android’s update scheme was broken. Even Apple joined in during its press conferences, comparing the high adoption rate of new iOS builds with the data provided in Google’s dashboard. 

Google might be too shy to share version statistics anymore, but PornHub is anything but bashful. It regularly exposes usage data, both pornographic and technical, with an array of lurid graphs and charts. In its new year-end summary, PornHub covers what browsers, search engines, and even game consoles people are using to access the site. There’s also a breakdown of mobile operating systems — the data Google doesn’t want you to see. 

Keep in mind, this is data for the entire year as opposed to just one month. So, it’s not exactly the same as the data Google provided in its dashboard updates. Over the course of 2019, Android Pie was the most popular Android platform with 48 percent usage. Next was Oreo with 23 percent. Android 10 (Q) only managed 2 percent. Meanwhile, 71 percent of Apple devices were on the latest iOS 13 platform. About a quarter of phones were running the older iOS 12. That’s probably a mix of data from earlier in 2019 and devices like the iPhone 6S that will never get the latest version. 

While Android’s update speed still lags behind Apple, the PornHub data is encouraging. For most of 2019, Pie was the most recent version of the OS, and it had much higher usage than past versions. With Android 7.0 and earlier, it could take a full year before the new version overtook the old one. That meshes with Google’s recent claim that Project Treble has successfully sped up new version rollouts. We’d prefer to get this data from Google, but no one’s going to turn down free porn data.

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