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Google Play Services to Drop Support for Gingerbread

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Nov 21, 2016, 4:01 PM   by Eric M. Zeman   @phonescooper
updated Nov 21, 2016, 4:09 PM

Google today said the next iteration of Google Play Services will sever backward compatibility with devices running Android 2.3 Gingerbread. Today, Google Play Services — the core code behind app compatibility across Android platforms — is 10.0.0 and supports API level 9. The move to Google Play Services 10.2.0, expected in early 2017, will jump from API level 9 to API level 14. This means Play Services 10.2.0 will support Android 4.0.1 Ice Cream Sandwich and up, leaving Android 2.3 Gingerbread devices behind. "The Gingerbread platform is almost six years old. Many Android developers have already discontinued support for Gingerbread in their apps," explained Google in a blog post. "This helps them build better apps that make use of the newer capabilities of the Android platform. For us, the situation is the same. By making this change, we will be able to provide a more robust collection of tools for Android developers with greater speed." At last check, only 1.3% of all devices accessing the Google Play Store were still running Gingerbread. The majority of devices are running Android 4.4 KitKat (25.2%), Android 5.x Lollipop (34.1%), or Android 6.x Marshmallow (24%). The change in API level support will not impact that many devices. Google says developers can either move forward and target API level 14 at a minimum, or offer multiple APKs via the Play Store to support both older and newer devices. This latter method will not include support for newer APIs, however, and may occasionally lead to broken or non-functioning apps. Google Play Services is updated automatically across Android devices once every couple of months.

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Nov 21, 2016, 8:09 PM

Its about time...

Nearly no apps will run on GB currently anyway, so if your stuck with an old device, you've been hating it for a couple of years now.

Or if you have an unlocked device that isn't on the default carrier, like an older ATT device on an MVNO. Sure there may BE an update, you just cant Get it.
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