Windows 11 beta testers can now download Android apps through the Microsoft Store
Windows 11 beta testers can now install Android apps on their systems directly through the Microsoft Store. The new experiment comes months after Microsoft promised to bring Android app support to Windows 11. Beta testers with Windows PCs based on AMD, Intel and Qualcomm processors can test Android apps. Microsoft says there will be a familiar experience of running Android apps and games on Windows 11, as users will be able to run them side-by-side using the new Snap Layouts feature or pin one down. ‘between them in the Start menu. Android apps are also integrated with Alt + Tab and task view to allow users to switch between apps just like they can move between their regular Windows apps.
Initially, Microsoft organized 50 Android apps for Windows 11 beta testers that are part of the Windows Insider program. These include mobile games like Lords Mobile, June’s Journey, and Coin Master, as well as apps like Kindle, Khan Academy Kids, and Lego Duplo World.
The number of 50 Android apps on Windows 11 for beta testing is indeed quite insignificant compared to Google Play which has nearly 3.5 million apps. The Amazon Appstore, which basically serves as a gateway to enable Android app support on Windows 11, also has more than 460,000 Android apps.
Microsoft has integrated the Amazon Appstore into the Microsoft Store to allow users to download and install Android apps on Windows 11 computers. The company also claims that the experience of running Android apps and games on the latest Windows operating system will be as smooth as running a native application. This means that users will be able to interact with Android apps via mouse, touch or stylus and run them side by side using the Snap Layouts feature, pin them to the Start menu or taskbar.
Notifications from Android apps installed on a Windows 11 PC will also appear in Action Center just like you get notifications from a native Windows app. Likewise, clipboard data can be shared between a Windows app and an Android app.
âWe built the experience with accessibility in mind; many Windows accessibility settings apply to Android apps and we are working with Amazon to make more improvements, âthe Windows team said in a blog post.
Microsoft has added a new component called Windows Subsystem for Android in Windows 11 that runs in a Hyper-V virtual machine, similar to the Windows Subsystem for Linux. It includes Linux kernel and Android operating system based on Android Open Source Project (AOSP) version 11 to provide support for Android applications. The subsystem is also distributed through the Microsoft Store as part of the Amazon Appstore installation.
Over time, Microsoft aims to strengthen the Windows Subsystem for Android by adding support for “more APIs, capabilities, and scenarios” to make it capable of running additional Android applications.
The new Windows subsystem is available on all types of Windows processors, including AMD, Intel, and Qualcomm. Microsoft is also working closely with Intel to use Intel Bridge technology to allow Arm-only applications to run on AMD and Intel devices. Additionally, the Redmond-based company intends to connect directly with app developers to publish their Android apps to Amazon’s Appstore for their access on Windows 11 PCs in the future.
At this time, limited support for Android apps is only available through the Windows 11 beta channel in the US. This means that you need to make sure your Windows 11 PC is set to the US region. The Amazon account you use must also be based in the United States to download Android apps through the Amazon Appstore.
Microsoft first introduced support for Android apps on Windows 11 when it unveiled the new platform in June. However, he confirmed in September that Android apps won’t be part of the first version of Windows 11 launched earlier this month.