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KitKat’s install base is much higher in North America than you think

Updated Dec 19th, 2018 8:48PM EST
KitKat Android market share May 2014

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At Apple’s World Wide Developers Conference this week, CEO Tim Cook bashed Android for its fragmentation by showing a slide with Android’s latest version, KitKat, on only 9% of all Android phones. While it’s true that KitKat’s market share is still very low throughout the entire world, analytics firm Chitika released new Android numbers on Friday that show KitKat has jumped to 37% in North America. Chitika attributes this increase mostly to the three most recent Samsung Galaxy S phones being updated to KitKat, which obviously makes sense since Samsung is the most popular Android smartphone maker.

KitKat is still not the most used version of Android in North America, however. That honor belongs to Jelly Bean, which still dominates at 47%. Chitika measures distribution sampling tens of millions of North American–based ad impressions on its ad network.

The report also found that 96% of Google’s own smartphones run KitKat, which again isn’t surprising because Nexus devices are the first devices to receive the latest version of Android. In contrast, only 41% of HTC phones and 39% of Samsung phones are running KitKat. Despite this low percentage, Samsung devices drive the most KitKat traffic, with 58% of all KitKat taffic coming from Samsung smartphones.