Apple's "fragmentation" chart says more about iOS than Android

Today, Apple released the image that it used during its Worldwide Developers Conference keynote to "prove" that there was no fragmentation in iOS compared to the "problem" with Android. Of course, this is the narrative that Apple wants, and it is maddening how often this argument keeps popping up, and how often the media runs with the flashy headline rather than explaining the issue as it is...
This is a discussion for a news article. To read the whole news, click here

59 Comments

1. ihatesmartphone unregistered

Key Lime Pie is the solution for fragmentation on Android :D

3. Mxyzptlk unregistered

That's what ICS was supposed to be for.

12. darkkjedii

Posts: 30903; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Exactly. Frag isn't going away, as long as hardware limits what can be ran on said device.

47. taz89

Posts: 2014; Member since: May 03, 2011

Google are tackling "fragmentation" just not by getting is updates but through api levels and putting all there core apps on the play store..Google introduced Google play services so regardless what os you are on you can usually get new features same goes with getting there core apps on the play store..over the years they have taken there system apps like gmail maps and recently the keyboard out of the os and put it into the play store so more people are likely to get new features etc without having to wait for an os update..think of it this way if apple want to update there email,keyboard,maps or app store etc they have to do a OS update where as if Google want to do the same thing its all done through the play store...both have fragmentation but of different types.. Google has fragmentation of what build of android people are on and imo iOS has fragmentation of what features are available on what...just recently Google added new features to Google now via an app update but cannot just update siri via an app update... Neither solutions perfect but don't think its an "apples to apples" comparison the way apple likes to suggest it is.

14. protozeloz

Posts: 5396; Member since: Sep 16, 2010

Not at all ICS united tablet and phone UI into a single thing... But then again you already knew that

25. roldefol

Posts: 4744; Member since: Jan 28, 2011

ICS was never going to end fragmentation, because not all extant devices were capable of running it (similar to iPhone 3G not getting iOS 6). And if they didn't have the resources for it, manufacturers only updated their most popular/most recent devices.

28. icyrock1

Posts: 307; Member since: Mar 25, 2013

Actually, I think that them updating key apps outside of new releases (music, books, play, etc) is there plan to ease "fragmentation". They can bypass the carrier and manufacturers and update phones that way.

51. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

Mxyzptlk is just a troll for Apple Inc.

55. roldefol

Posts: 4744; Member since: Jan 28, 2011

Apple wouldn't stoop that low. He's just a troll.

5. MichaelHeller

Posts: 2734; Member since: May 26, 2011

And, there's the first person to miss the point on the Android side...

10. exsymbian

Posts: 6; Member since: Mar 22, 2013

KLP wont solve anything. Google should enforce manufacturers to provide at least two incremental android updates for their products.,

2. AppleHateBoy unregistered

Michael. You are my hero.

8. abcdefgh

Posts: 471; Member since: Mar 29, 2013

people with glass house should not play ANGRY BIRDS BAD PIGGIES lol.XD

15. darkkjedii

Posts: 30903; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

You're gonna get yourself limited with the spamming dude

9. SellPhones82

Posts: 569; Member since: Dec 11, 2008

Great read Michael! I always found it funny that Apple allowed older devices to "upgrade" to a newer OS version, minus most of the the key new features, yet call out Android for fragmentation. So I guess Google should just remove Google Now and Project Butter from JB and then release it to the older non-supported phones and then fragmentation would be gone! Well, at least according to Apple it would...

52. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

Well said!

11. SonyXperiaNexus

Posts: 374; Member since: Oct 01, 2012

Plzzzzz add that resolution chart as a separate article if you get it, i wanna see it. BTW awesome article michael, your effort really shows.

18. MichaelHeller

Posts: 2734; Member since: May 26, 2011

If Chitika can get the info (which is hard to generate in the first place), I hope to be able to have that chart in the next couple weeks or so.

45. roscuthiii

Posts: 2383; Member since: Jul 18, 2010

Careful... might get slapped with a libel lawsuit.

13. speckledapple

Posts: 902; Member since: Sep 29, 2011

Well written Michael. I enjoy reading insightful articles such as this. Its not about fanboys just about the facts of the matter. I think iOS is a strong OS and Apple certainly has done a great job making sure it is the beast they want it to be. But it has its problems as well and fragmentation is one of many. Though just as Android has its own issues, much of it on either os comes down to developers. As you said, there are all kinds of tools to create a better experience for users and they need to do that. Developers need to step it up.

21. JunkCreek

Posts: 407; Member since: Jul 13, 2012

but apple doesn't make that tool to their devs. devs must make all apps and games specifically for each device. and it is harder task to do than testing the apps and games for different hardwares and chips. apple devs must built it from the scratch again while on android the devs can only edit here and there then add it to the manifest.

16. JunkCreek

Posts: 407; Member since: Jul 13, 2012

yes, i thought about it also. i always wonder how suffer the devs builds apps and games for even ip3 and ip3gs and ip4/s and ip5 and also ipad2, 3 and 4. while on android, the devs could just attach graphics files for low, mid and high res.

17. Telemike

Posts: 43; Member since: Nov 30, 2012

What Google needs to do and I think I read they are doing this...is to make core components of the Android OS updatable from the Play store rather than from the Carrier. IF Google can somehow separate all the carrier related radio stuff from the Core OS, then updates to the OS should be faster and easier bypassing the Carrier.

53. kabhijeet.16

Posts: 884; Member since: Dec 05, 2012

Google is actually doing this.. Releasing all core apps one by one into Play Store. Latest examples are proprietary Keyboard, Camera app, etc.

19. rantao333

Posts: 345; Member since: May 21, 2013

and yet, i found myself crash most of the time with android apps....

22. JunkCreek

Posts: 407; Member since: Jul 13, 2012

buy htc, huawei, lg or motorolla..you get some incompactible if using samsung device. you can't even make swap your internal "sdcard" storage to real sdcard so you can get larger storage. but for 2-8gb "sdcard" internal storage, i think it is enough for us to install almost any apps and games. but if you only had 512mb, you'd feel the ass in the pain... :p

43. -box-

Posts: 3991; Member since: Jan 04, 2012

I have an HTC (it's sat dormant since my wife got a GS3) and both crash and freeze with disappointing frequency.

20. spideyhead256

Posts: 148; Member since: Nov 05, 2012

Lol love the thumbnail micheal.

23. MichaelHeller

Posts: 2734; Member since: May 26, 2011

Thanks! (side note: it's spelled Michael.)

27. spideyhead256

Posts: 148; Member since: Nov 05, 2012

sorry michael didn't pay attention!

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at https://www.parsintl.com/phonearena or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit https://www.parsintl.com/ for samples and additional information.