60% of US Android phones not getting updates less than a year after release

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Microsoft has promised to support all Windows Phones with updates equally. This is certainly not true for the hundreds of millions of Android handsets sold already.

Theunderstatement blog have researched all Android phone shipped in the United States1 up through the middle of last year and every update that was released for each device – be it a major OS upgrade or a minor support patch – as well as prices and release & discontinuation dates.

The research pains a pretty poor picture.

  • 7 of the 18 Android phones never ran a current version of the OS.
  • 12 of 18 only ran a current version of the OS for a matter of weeks or less.
  • 10 of 18 were at least two major versions behind well within their two year contract period.
  • 11 of 18 stopped getting any support updates less than a year after release.
  • 13 of 18 stopped getting any support updates before they even stopped selling the device or very shortly thereafter.
  • 15 of 18 don’t run Gingerbread, which shipped in December 2010.
  • In a few weeks, when Ice Cream Sandwich comes out, every device on here will be another major version behind.
  • At least 16 of 18 will almost certainly never get Ice Cream Sandwich.

The picture is even worse outside of USA, and results in millions of Android users running devices with known security holes, and stops developers targeting the latest version of the OS.

With the Mango update now available to 100% of Windows Phone 7 users, Microsoft is clearly showing how to do it right.  Android on the other hands seems to be doing it very wrong.

Read the full article at theunderstatement blog here.

Thanks Jon for the tip.

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