Microsoft makes room for Android applications

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Presented as one of the flagship features of Windows 11, the arrival of Android applications on Microsoft’s OS is taking shape. Microsoft is starting to offer some users to discover this novelty.

Microsoft made Windows 11 available earlier this month and not all features are available yet. One of the most anticipated is the possibility of using Android applications from the operating system of Redmond. The two universes tend to come together and Microsoft is starting to offer this novelty to its users. The American firm announces on its blog that Insiders of the beta branch who reside in the United States now have the possibility of testing about fifty Android applications on their machines: this feature is based on the deployment of the Windows subsystem to Android and concerns computers running on Intel, AMD and Qualcomm platforms.

This first look is only for a handful of users, and they will need to meet certain hardware requirements. In addition to respecting the prerequisites of Windows 11, you must have the most recent version of Microsoft Store, an American Amazon account and have a machine configured in the United States region. It is also necessary to enable processor virtualization (Hyper-V), since this subsystem runs in a virtual machine, such as Windows Subsystem for Linux. These prerequisites are essential to take full advantage of this feature, but be aware that it is already possible to install Android applications from France, with some system adjustments.

The Amazon AppStore Preview can be found in the Microsoft Store. © Microsoft

Restricted to Windows Insiders members initially

As if to better mark its philosophy, different from that of Apple, Microsoft ensures that “Windows is the most open platform on the planet for creators”. A speech that prompted the firm to offer Android apps on its OS for the first time, with the help of Amazon. These applications are in fact available in the Amazon Appstore, the application store of the American e-commerce giant. “We’ve teamed up with Amazon and popular app developers to select 50 apps for Windows Insider users to test on a wide variety of devices.”, explains the firm. These apps have been handpicked and are intended to provide an overview of this functionality. There are mobile games, reading applications and content for children.

Matchington mansion (Android), Word (Win32), Pinterest (PWA) and Gimp (Linux) running at the same time. © Microsoft

Microsoft has not yet mentioned the availability to the general public of this feature, which should mark a turning point in its history. With this announcement, its operating system is now capable of running Android, Win 32 (the .exe. And .msi), Progressive Web App (PWA) and Linux applications at the same time. When Windows 11 was announced, the Redmond firm mentioned availability “Later in the year”, but the feature is likely not to be available until 2022.

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