Even for the notoriously fragmented Android ecosystem, the freshest mobile OS flavor had unusually great difficulty rising to semi-relevant adoption numbers, barely pushing over the 1 percent mark last month after technically seeing daylight way back in August 2016.
But now all of a sudden, Nougat’s share has more than doubled, surging to a still-modest though comparatively much healthier 2.8 percent during a 7-day period ending this Monday, March 6.
What might have happened between early February and now? Well, we saw a host of Android oldies from several manufacturers officially updated to builds 7.0 and 7.1 (mainly 7.0), but let’s not kid ourselves, this is mostly Samsung’s doing.
The world’s top smartphone vendor stalled Nougat’s progress taking an eternity to roll the goodies out to the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge, finally coming through when it mattered with both international and local promotions these past few weeks.
It’s important to highlight Nougat’s share today exceeds that of Marshmallow exactly one year ago (2.8 to 2.3 percent), even if surpassing Lollipop, Marshmallow, KitKat and Jelly Bean continues to feel like an uphill struggle.
According to March 2017 Android distribution data, 5.0 + 5.1 Lollipop still edges out 6.0 Marshmallow (32.5 to 31.3 percent), with 4.4 KitKat at 20.8 percent, Jelly Bean hitting a combined 10.6 percent share, and Ice Cream Sandwich and Gingerbread each clinging on to their fading 1 percent. It’s a fragmented, diverse world out there, but if Samsung speeds up Nougat updates for past-gen flagships, as well as the Galaxy S8 release, things are definitely looking up.