Almost every month, Google releases its Android platform distribution numbers and we learn that there’s still a small percentage of people using Gingerbread, a version of Android that’s nearly six years old. Unfortunately, Google has some bad news for whoever those people are that are still using Gingerbread today.
Google has announced that Google Play services v10.0.0 will be the last version to support for Gingerbread. That’ll complicate things for anyone still using Gingerbread, as apps built with the Android SDK following the release of Google Play services 10.2 in early 2017 will fail when it comes to Google Mobile Services (GMS), which includes apps like Google Search.
Google notes that Android Honeycomb will also be left behind with the update to Google Play services 10.2.0.
This news might come as a disappointment to anyone still using Gingerbread or Honeycomb, but it’s not a terribly surprising decision. As I mentioned previously, Gingerbread is nearing its sixth birthday, and discontinuing support for it in Google Play services means that Android app developers can make their apps better because that’s one less version of Android that they need to worry about supporting.
One other detail about Google Play services 10.0.0 that’s worth noting is that it hints that Android Pay for Android Wear smartwatches in getting closer. References to Android Pay and Tap and Pay have been found inside Google Play services 10.0.0, and this text hints that Google is hard at work on that functionality.