Google may have unveiled KitKat, its controversially named upcoming new Android build, yesterday but Jelly Bean continues to be the most used version of its mobile platform, according to new figures released today.

The latest update to Google’s Android Developer Dashboard shows that, as of September 5, the two versions of Jelly Bean (Android 4.1.x and 4.2.x, the newest builds on the market) account for 45.1 percent of all Android devices running the latest Google Play Store app. That’s up from 40.5 percent last month.

With the industry focused on Jelly Bean, installs of Ice Cream Sandwich were unsurprisingly down from 22.5 percent in August to 21.7 percent. Honeycomb remains on a minuscule 0.1 percent and Froyo drops to 2.4 percent from 2.5 percent a month prior.

The percentage of ‘active devices’ — as Google terms those that run the Google Play app — powered by Gingerbread remains high at 30.7 percent, though that is down from 33.1 percent last month; Jelly Bean finally overtook the 2.5 year old build as the most installed version in July.

As the table below shows, Google is now phasing out any mention of Donut (Android 1.6), which it says accounts for under 0.1% of active devices, because it does not support the latest version (3.2) of the Google Play app, which was launched in August.

android dash 520x206 Jelly Bean now installed on 45% of active Android devices, as successor KitKat waits in the wings

 

Google also announced yesterday that it is past 1 billion device activations to date. That’s an incredible number, but the method by which Google captures its Dashboard data doesn’t give us any insight into how many of those devices are running each version of Android.

What it does measure, however, is the app-using audience that developers can target, which is insightful for anyone creating an Android app.

There’s currently no release date for KitKat, but Jelly Bean should have enough time to pass the 50 percent installation rate among active devices before the new candybar-themed Android 4.4 build supercedes it.

Headline image via Sundar Pichai / Google+