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I'm developing a web app and a requirement is that it work on popular android devices. I've seen android development questions asked on android.stackexchange and have been closed since that board is not about development. So I posted my question on stackoverflow instead - Where to find current android screen size stats?

I am trying to get the most recent data I can in order to make an informed decision on building for that device or not. Since this is for development, the marketing and PR stuff doesn't help me at all. The numbers on the android developer site are a good start, they're just old for this one specific metric (the rest are updated every couple weeks.)

Knowing that data is key to development. I imagine that's why it, as well as related stats, are on the main android developer site. There are third party sites that provide their own stats for iOS, so I imagine (but have not found) similar third-party tracking is done for android too.

How can I make that question more about development? Or, where else should I have posted it? It seems like this is the sort of data developers need to know, and it's really only relavant to developers.

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It would help if your question was a programming one. One way you could make it a programming question is by showing the code that you wrote that requires these stats... it's entirely possible that the user community can tell you a way to do it without needing the stats at all. –  Robert Harvey Jan 22 '13 at 19:19
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@RobertHarvey I still see this as entirely a business decision, not a programming one. By stats it appears he means number of units sold, not the dimensions of the screen. The number of units sold is not of direct impact on any concrete programming problem. –  Servy Jan 22 '13 at 19:26
    
@Servy: Hence, my "reality test" of showing the code that these stats are to be written against. It's a red herring; the stats are probably not used in the actual code, but only used to make decisions about which code to write or not to write, making the question squarely off-topic. –  Robert Harvey Jan 22 '13 at 19:28
    
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I would think this would qualify as: "practical, answerable problems that are unique to the programming profession". I don't care about sales figures. I understand they're not a of direct impact on development. I need to know what percentage of android devices currently in use are large and hppi/hdpi. That has direct impact on dev. Those ^^ links are too subjective for what I'm looking for. I need to decide, for example, which breakpoints and pixel densities I should build for. If large hppi now accounts for 10% of the market, I need to build for it. If it's 2%, I can ignore it for now. –  user1337 Jan 22 '13 at 20:48
    
And it's not that there is code that requires these stats, the stats are required to determine if I should write the code or not. Ie, we're not building for Windows Mobile because its marketshare is far too low. Determining which breakpoints and screen densities to build for sure seems like "practical, answerable problems that are unique to the programming profession". –  user1337 Jan 22 '13 at 20:49
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A larger problem with device statistics is how rapidly any answers to a question like this go out of date. One recurring question in [ios] is about whether or not to support older iOS versions, so people have asked for current install base statistics. However, those stats go out of date soon after the question is asked, prompting people to keep re-asking the same question. This is one of the reasons why we have a "too localized" close reason. –  Brad Larson Jan 22 '13 at 21:06
    
Unless you can find a definitive source that has these statistics and never goes out of date (like Google's Android stats), you'll have even more of a problem here, considering how quickly the Android landscape changes every month. –  Brad Larson Jan 22 '13 at 21:10
    
@user1337: For the record, I've lobbied to get the phrase, "practical, answerable problems that are unique to the programming profession" removed for this very reason. For a question to be on-topic, it must also be about: a specific programming problem, a software algorithm, or software tools commonly used by programmers. –  Robert Harvey Jan 22 '13 at 21:12
    
@BradLarson there are a couple sites for iOS that are continually updated, but run by third parties. My hope was to find that sort of thing for android. Thanks to all for helping me see why this would be considered off-topic. I'm still not sure where this should have been posted, however, since I've seen lessor development related questions closed on android(dot) for being too development related. –  user1337 Jan 22 '13 at 21:20
    
@user1337: I think Brad's point is that your post would have to be constantly updated to be useful. –  Robert Harvey Jan 23 '13 at 18:37
    
@RobertHarvey and my point is if the answer links to a site that is continually updated, then my post wouldn't have to be updated. Eg, if the answer was something like david-smith.org/iosversionstats or 14oranges.com/blog –  user1337 Jan 23 '13 at 19:08
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It doesn't cite meta for additional info on what should and should not be posted -- that's how things have been done for all eternity, though. Think of Meta as the common law of Stack Overflow. You have a point in that maybe the FAQ should state that more clearly. –  Pëkka Jan 23 '13 at 22:59
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@user1337: If you look at the bottom of the faq for the main site, you will see that it links to the FAQ entries on Meta. They are officially supported. –  Robert Harvey Jan 23 '13 at 23:14
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There isn't any way we could possibly shoehorn all of the community consensus into the FAQ; it would be the size of the Gideon Bible, and no one would read it. –  Robert Harvey Jan 24 '13 at 16:28
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1 Answer 1

Questions that will become invalid in a short time are typically closed as "Too Localized."

Questions asking for links to external resources are off-topic.

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That's what meta says, but what the main site says is questions that are "practical, answerable problems that are unique to the programming profession" are okay. There is nothing official, nor that I agreed to when signing up, saying that "too localized" is not allowed. And I didn't ask for links to external resources, I simply said that would be a suitable answer. I don't have the answer, that's why I asked a question. Nice try, but again I cite the official rules. –  user1337 Jan 23 '13 at 21:47
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@user the official rules are a rough guideline for people to vote by, nothing more. The rest is guided by community consensus, which is sometimes reflected by Meta discussion. "Shopping list" questions (including requests for external resources) have been off topic by that consensus - pretty unequivocally - for a long, long time now. You can choose to ignore that consensus but that won't get you very far. –  Pëkka Jan 23 '13 at 23:03
    
@Pekka웃 Note that I didn't request external resources, I simply said I would be okay if the answer included one. That happens here all the time. Secondly, nothing in the actual rules of the site say that external resources are against the rules. I get that many here don't follow the actual rules, and that may be the SOP, but still, that's not apparent to the users nor is it something they agree to when they post. –  user1337 Jan 24 '13 at 16:22
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