What is Android fragmentation? – Supply Chain Game Changer™

In its simplest form, Android fragmentation refers to the idea that there is a wide range of Android operating system models that can be used and operated in the modern world. Not everyone on Android can update their operating system at the same time.

Additionally, any software trying to corner the Android market needs to run on every single OS and OS update to avoid alienating customers. With the number of models available, it’s easy to see that “fragmentation” is going to be a nightmare for in-app developers and testers.

According to this, 40 percent of Android devices worldwide no longer receive critical protection warnings from Google. As a result, they are vulnerable to identity leakage, ransomware attacks, and various security breaches.

This puts a heavier burden on app developers as they have to build operating systems with insecure protection. Android fragmentation is unsurprisingly considered the operating system’s most serious flaw. Although Android is used on 74.6 percent of mobile devices worldwide, it is often criticized for being inferior to iOS due to this aspect. Read more about how to securely transact with Bitcoins https://cryptorevolt.app

Why Does Android Fragmentation Occur?

The root cause of Android fragmentation can be summed up in two words: open source software. Manufacturers can experiment with Android to their heart’s content and use it with certain limitations. Of course, they are often responsible for providing patches specifically for the versions of Android available on their smartphones.

It is possible that not every manufacturer wants to offer regular notifications. Additionally, certain Android versions may have been heavily updated and may not respond to changes made for other Android versions. Due to the open-source nature of Android, manufacturers often “skinn” their variant of the operating system.

This applies to a manufacturer-customized version of the operating system that is specifically designed for a device. Note the differences between Nexus and MIUI-based smartphones. Despite the fact that they use the same operating system, their visual and functional characteristics differ significantly.

Let’s take the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 as an example. The handset comes with an iris scanner that wasn’t previously available on standard Android models. As a result, Samsung tweaked the OS before it was possible, resulting in an Android edition only available on that one device. Consider the same situation but with multiple manufacturers and products under each of them.

Effects of Android Fragmentation

Widespread fragmentation of Android is having diverse and far-reaching implications for the digital economy and hardware and software development activities.


Some applications may require a specific Android version and specific application features to run properly. With too many Android models on the market, there is no certainty that all or even a significant portion of active Android users will be updated to the latest update.

The number of possible customers that an app addresses is severely limited as a result. It’s also a challenge to customize the software for each edition due to the sheer number of them.

Development and QA difficulties

For developers and testers, the large number of device Android edition variations inevitably leads to technological difficulties. When developing or testing an app, both the app creator and the tester must consider a bewildering array of devices and Android OS models.

For developers, optimizing an app for every possible Android smartphone is downright frustrating. Also, testers would validate the software on as many actual device Android configurations as possible, which can be daunting and costly if the right infrastructure isn’t in place.

Bad for BYOD

When using BYOD policies to enforce business mobility, Android can present a challenge. Android fragmentation causes the company to deal with various protection issues due to the differences between Android models. This makes app and protection maintenance difficult and time-consuming.

How to deal with Android fragmentation?

In 2020, smartphone consumers would demand nothing less than excellence from the app they use. Since each product has to compete against multiple competitors, consumers can delete it at the first sign of trouble. In fact, 56% of users uninstall apps in the first seven days after downloading them. There is a high risk that an app will be deprecated because it is safe.

Testing apps on actual Android devices is the best way to ensure they are stable and working well. A company will not be able to set up, run and update a local Android application lab because it has a lot of money left over. With modern smartphones and Android models coming out at a rapid pace, it’s easy to see how an up-to-date device lab will cost a small fortune.

Developers and testers will use a real device cloud to run simulations. It essentially allows them to monitor the success and effectiveness of software on actual Android devices without having to collect or manage any hardware. Browser Stack provides the cloud platform that enables this type of testing.

You can also use the built-in browsers on these Android devices to browse websites. Android testing can be done by signing up for a free account and selecting the mix of software and Android edition of your choice.

Android fragmentation article and permission to publish here provided by Jean Nichols. Originally written for Supply Chain Game Changer and published on May 18th, 2021.

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