The Android 7.0 Nougat operating system, released in 2016, is approaching the end of its support lifecycle. Google has begun phasing out support for Nougat devices, with the latest indication being a new flag within the Google Calendar app. The UnsupportedOperatingSystem__enabled flag, when activated, prompts users on older devices to upgrade to Android Oreo 8.0 or later to ensure continued app functionality.
Reasons for Google’s Decision to End Support
Several factors contribute to Google’s decision to discontinue support for older Android versions like Nougat. Security vulnerabilities and the absence of new features plague older Android releases. Moreover, older devices often lack the hardware resources to handle the latest app features, leading to performance issues and crashes. Additionally, the user base for older Android versions is steadily shrinking, making it economically infeasible to maintain support for a minority of users, notes NIXsolutions.
Impact on Android Users
The discontinuation of support for Nougat will affect a significant number of Android users. According to AppBrain, 3.8% of Android smartphones and tablets currently run Android 7.0 or 7.1, representing 2.37% of all active Android devices. While this may seem like a small percentage, it translates to tens of millions of users worldwide. These users will soon face the loss of certain app functionalities, including Google Calendar.
The Future of Android Nougat Support
Google Calendar’s potential demise on Nougat devices serves as a warning for users of other older Android versions. As developers prioritize newer Android releases, compatibility with older versions will gradually diminish. Ultimately, the end of Nougat support underscores the importance of timely device upgrades to maintain access to the latest features and security updates.