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Android ICS creeps over 10% mark just as Jelly Bean appears

While next version of Android is almost upon us, the last, Ice Cream Sandwich, is still struggling -- but it has jumped forward.

Ice Cream Sandwich -- aka Android 4.0 -- is finally on more than 10 per cent of Android devices (10.7 to be precise), a mere eight months after its launch. Its share of the droidspace has shot up from 7.1 per cent in the last month, however, according to figures from Google.

This sudden change is likely down to the recent release of flagship phones such as the HTC One X and Samsung Galaxy S3, which have exploded in popularity -- Samsung expects to sell over 10 million Galaxy S3s by the end of July.

Gingerbread (Android 2.3) fell from 65 to 64 per cent, and Froyo (2.2) saw a similar drop of 2 per cent. Given that Gingerbread is over 15 months old, it'll be interesting to see whether 4.0 can reach a market share of 65 per cent in the same time frame, but considering its current progress, I'm doubtful, and many fear the same problem for Jelly Bean.

The move from Gingerbread to Ice Cream Sandwich was a much bigger change than the latest update. The major improvement in Ice Cream Sandwich, along with cleaner code and streamlined functionality, was unification between phones and tablets, allowing developers to natively change the user interface based on what hardware it ran on, instead of having a dedicated tablet version (3.0 Honeycomb).

Jelly Bean is the latest update to the Android family, with some refinement to the user interface, along with a collection of productivity applications.

While initially reticent about JB, Samsung has guaranteed updates in July for the Nexus S and Galaxy Nexus, with more to be announced "soon", The Verge reports.

Other manufacturers haven't been so helpful, though, with most so far declining to comment when they expect to push their flavour of the new iteration. HTC is "excited" but non-committal on dates, and LG says it is looking into developing Android 4.1 for current devices, but doesn't have anything official to announce.

With the majority of devices at this year's Mobile World Congress mobilepalooza coming preloaded with crusty old Gingerbread, 2012 isn't the year of ICS, and I doubt whether 2013 will be any better for Jelly Bean.

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