I am working on an Android app, and trying to figure out which version I should target.

The current version is 28, so I figure that targeting any version of that minus 3 (ie >= 25) seems reasonable, but I'm wondering if there is any industry accepted guideline on this.

When the most recent version of Android is X, should you target the current version, or X-Y, if you want to reach as many Android users as possible, without compromising the security of your app, etc.


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    This is similar to asking which browsers and what versions to support for a web application, or what versions of Windows to support for a desktop application. Unfortunately this question is a little too broad for this site. – Greg Burghardt Aug 12 '18 at 23:43
  • whichever version your users are going to be using... – jwenting Nov 12 '18 at 5:03

There is no rule you can apply to every app. You need stats on market penetration for each version, and cross reference that with what your app needs to do. Some older versions of Android might not have the framework features later versions have. And if features are missing you can probably roll your own, but that's additional cost. You also need to be familiar with any vulnerabilities each version has. Know your potential users. Users in developed countries have money for newer phones, upgrading happens more often.

Rule of thumb? No. What percentage of Android users do you want to support? Answer that question and you know how many versions back you need to support.

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There is not a rule but for now i don't see any benefit supporting api lower than 14, because a lot of companies and libraries have decided to support 14 as the lowest android version, but if your app support api 19 as the lowest you will cover almost the whole android market share so in most cases 19 is the one that makes more sense. Higher than 19 and your app will be available to a lot less users

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As of today, where 28 (Pie) is the latest, I would say target 28 and support 21 or higher unless otherwise required. The vast majority of devices are 5.0 or higher and there's many features missing from under 5.0, plus the people running under 5.0 are not really in the market for new apps. If you support down to 4.0 it will be Compat calls all over the place to accommodate.

Keep in mind you have to target at least 26 as of today.

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