Java ME-powered dumb phones overtake Android

January 1, 2012

Here is a theme that just keeps coming up again and again that begs an in depth examination. “Smartphones” running some older, often jurassic version of Android – how many devices offer Ice Cream Sandwich? — just aren’t showing up in web metrics, mobile commerce or otherwise generating the kind of data that oozes money.

Google’s Andy Rubbin claims that 700,000 Android devices are activated on an average day. That is a very. large. number. Yet it arrives almost naked vis a vis what people are actually doing, or not, with all of those widgets.

Emblematic of Android users’ gosh darned pathetic stats is the fact that for the second month in a row devices running Java ME — the dumb phone operating system — generate more web traffic. Although Net Applications noted the turn about in October’s numbers, many discounted the occurrence as a blip in the data — not so now.

The really interesting twist is that Android usage surpassed Java ME back in September only to get overcome once again by the shear number of feature phone users. I guess there’s still hope for December.

Rising to the top

Beat the drum. Another pitiable accompanying data point is the zero or near zero number of updates the vast majority Android devices get over their lifetime. That’s one of the big factors behind Android’s how-low-can-they-go 55 percent (versus nearly 90 percent for iPhone) loyalty rate, which puts it a couple points ahead of drug-resistant Chlamydia.

One area where Android isn’t falling down? Google’s open platform attracts the most, by a huge margin, mobile malware.

And isn’t that a nice counterpoint to Android’s pauticty of updates…

What’s your take?

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10 Responses to “Java ME-powered dumb phones overtake Android”

  1. Lol:

    Wow ~ The only impression I got from this post (it isn’t an article right?) is that your a dick.

  2. David:

    Now, now… why somehow some people think that Android has done them so much harm that they go into an online crusade against it?

    Why is that? Is that fanboism? Some kind of cult of the Apple (or is it Microsoft)? Some technological fundamentalism, whatever that may be?

    Seriously, this article breaths rage and anger without no obvious reason and no informative facts, and I’m still left wondering why… just rage, anger and rants… people need to get a life.

  3. Josh:

    “Java ME — the dumb phone operating system — “. Instant loss of any possible credibility. The only dumb phone in here is the article writer.

  4. Susan:

    One thing to remember is that most Android phones can be rooted and updated ROMS loaded. That’s how I’ve gotten my POS LGAlly to a usable state. Still I will be upgrading to a new Android phone when my upgrade period starts in February.

  5. Market Mayhem:

    Haha. The author made a couple whiney Android fanbois cry for their momma. Android OS is the most fragmented platforms to ever come down the pike. Handsets less than a year old can’t even be updated unless “rooted” by some basement-dwelling Andy-fanboi. As if the average working mother or daughter are going to be “rooting” their smartphones because they have nothing better to do with their time. Want to upgrade your Android smartphone? Go out and buy a new one. It’s Google’s master plan to “keep those amazing activations coming” while consumers’ desk drawers pile up with nearly useless, relatively new Android smartphones because no one knows how or when to upgrade them. Android smartphone buyers get what they pay for when they buy junk. Google is the evil empire and Andy-fanbois are their loyal minions.

  6. paul s.:

    Nexus All the Way for Me from now on!

  7. Alen K.:

    These “dumb” phone run Java ME. However does Java ME application generated all these web traffic? I guest most of the traffic are from Native application on these phones.

  8. Jake:

    Even if you buy a new android, you will most likely still get the older version of the OS. Most Androids are still on a 2 year old revision. Sorry dudes, the vast majority of Android users use it as a phone not as a Smartphone. Just look at the web metrics. Android’s are mostly just just cheap throwaway phones.

  9. jbelkin:

    The simple fact is that 90% of Android users get handed an OS – whether it’s Java ME, Android or Symbian matters very little to them. It’s a FREE phone and Android is a fine free mobile OS – consumers recognize this – but are they willing to pay for the Android OS? No, as evident by Android tablet sales (plus Google is telling everyone not to buy one for 6 months when their own Moto comes out). So it shouldn’t surprise anyone that Android doesb’t register on the web – most of its users don’t use it except to text or make phone calls. But then anyone who actually uses Android OS can tell you why.

  10. Russ:

    Why update? There’s no reason to. Want a better anything, download it from the app store for free. The idea of updates is residual from using desktop devices. When was the last time your “dumb” phone received an OTA update? Probably never and never will. iOS releases updates because you can’t change anything. Don’t like that they don’t have notification history? Oh well. You get to wait for iOS 5. Anyone tried to run iOS 5 on a 3GS? iOS 4 ran like sputtery mud. All technology has a short lifespan. Welcome to the future. Don’t want to deal with malware and are confused by choices? Get an iOS device. Want to use whatever you want for anything? Get an Android. Want to be ridiculed for being a technological luddite? Get a “dumb” phone. Don’t care? Get whatever’s free.

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