Jelly Bean has finally taken Ice Cream Sandwich’s place as the second-most prevalent Android version out there. According to Google’s Android Platform Versions page, 28.4 percent of all Androids out there now run Jelly Bean—up from 25 percent in March—while the percentage of devices running Ice Cream Sandwich has gone down from March’s 29.3 percent to 27.5 percent last month.

To be specific, Android 4.1 Jelly Bean accounts for 26.1 percent of all devices, while the more recent Android 4.2 Jelly Bean is present on just 2.3 percent. Jelly Bean’s accelerated growth can be attributed to an increasing number of smartphone manufacturers choosing it over ICS for their mid-end phones. From a mere 12 percent in January to 25 percent in March, Jelly Bean has grown at quite an exponential rate.

The Jelly Bean statue's back.

The Jelly Bean strikes back

Jelly Bean’s growth has eaten into Android 2.3 Gingerbread’s share too, bringing it down from March’s 39.7 percent to 38.4 percent. However, Gingerbread still reigns as the most prevalent Android version. 

It’s possible the number of devices running Ice Cream Sandwich will go down from now. Although it brought a new interface and support for a lot of new technologies, ICS was prone to lags and frame rate issues. Especially compared to the smooth iOS 5, ICS’s lack of consistent frame rates was jarring. 

However, Jelly Bean brought Project Butter (triple-buffering), which fixes the frame rate at a solid 60 FPS, besides a lot of great new features, without needing powerful hardware to run it. To put this in perspective, my now-ancient Sony Ericsson Xperia Mini Pro currently runs CyanogenMod’s build of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, and I have experienced very few problems with it.

The stage is all set now for the next version of Android. It’ll be interesting to see how it fares, as besides its closest predecessors Jelly Bean and Ice Cream sandwich, Key Lime Pie or whatever it’s called will also have to compete against Gingerbread to capture market share.

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