A kicking from KitKat: Google aims to rid Android of fragmentation for good

Low-end phones the focus

A kicking from KitKat: Google aims to rid Android of fragmentation for good

Google will directly target the issue of Android fragmentation with the release of its upcoming - and unabashedly branded - KitKat operating system.

That's according to former Wall Street Journal reporter Amir Efrati, who has claimed KitKat has been specifically designed to run in the same manner on high-end and low-end Android devices, finally consigning fragmentation to the recycle bin.

A matter of memory

According to documentation on the OS, KitKat "optimises memory use in every major component" and provides "tools to help developers create memory-efficient applications" - even for less powerful "entry-level devices" such as those running 512 megabytes of memory.

Simultaneously a blessing and a curse for Google, the open Android ecosystem has seen blazingly fast top-tier devices launched alongside drastically underpowered budget models.

While this device fragmentation provides Android consumers with unprecedented purchasing options, it makes the lives of app developers difficult as the budget devices historically struggled to run the latest Android operating system.

Reportedly, less than half of the Android devices in the hands of consumers are running Android 4.1+ (Jelly Bean) which entered the market in June 2012 - as many cheaper devices simply can't meet the minimum system requirements.

By contrast, Apple reported that almost two-thirds (62 percent) of iOS devices are now running iOS 7, which it released in September 2013.

[source: Amir Efrati]

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Representing the former colonies, Matt keeps the Pocket Gamer news feed updated when sleepy Europeans are sleeping. As a frustrated journalist, diehard gamer and recovering MMO addict, this is pretty much his dream job.