Announced on its Android Developers Blog, Google has revealed that they will no longer be supporting devices that run on Android Ice Cream Sandwich. “The Android Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS) platform is seven years old and the active device count has been below 1% for some time. Consequently, we are deprecating support for ICS in future releases of Google Play services. For devices running ICS, the Google Play Store will no longer update Play Services APK beyond version 14.7.99.”
What this means is that if for whatever reason you still have an Android Ice Cream Sandwich device, Google and the Google Play Store will no longer support it. However like we said, given how old the update is and based on Google’s stats of the update’s distribution, the impact of their decision should be minimal at best.
As for developers, it means that they will need to raise their target API to level 16, or alternatively they can create multiple APKs, with one that continues to target/support Ice Cream Sandwich if they choose to continue supporting it.