Microsoft now allows Windows 11 testers to try out Android apps. A preview version of the Windows subsystem for Android is available today for beta testers of Windows 11, which enables access to apps from the Amazon Appstore. Testers with Intel, AMD and Qualcomm processors can try Android apps on Windows 11.
Apps can be downloaded from the Microsoft Store, which lists a variety of apps which then refer to the Amazon Appstore for download and installation. Android apps can run side-by-side with other Windows apps and are also built into Alt + Tab and Task View, and you can pin them to the Start menu or the taskbar.
“You can view notifications from Android app notifications in the Action Center or share your clipboard between a Windows app and an Android app.” explains Android on Windows 11 team. “We built the experience with accessibility in mind; Many Windows accessibility settings apply to Android apps and we’re working with Amazon to make further improvements. “
Microsoft has partnered with Amazon to curate 50 apps for Windows Insiders to test on Windows 11. This includes mobile games like Lords Mobile, June’s trip, and Mint master. There are also reading apps like Kindle and kids apps like Lego Duplo World or Khan Academy Kids.
Fifty Apps is a tiny selection of the 3 million plus apps available on the Google Play Store, and even the 600,000+ in the Amazon App Store. It’s not clear how many Android apps will be available once this feature rolls out across Windows 11.
Microsoft has built a subsystem into Windows 11 to enable support for Android apps. It contains the Linux kernel and an Android operating system based on the Android Open Source Project (AOSP) version 11. “The subsystem runs in a virtual Hyper-V machine, like the Windows subsystem for Linux,” says Microsoft’s Android Apps on Windows 11 team. “It knows how to map the runtime and APIs of apps in the AOSP environment to the Windows graphics layer, the memory buffers, the input modes, the physical and virtual devices and the sensors.”
This subsystem supports AMD, Intel, and Qualcomm chips, and Microsoft has partnered with Intel to enable arm-only apps to run on AMD and Intel devices.
Microsoft is only enabling Android apps in the Windows 11 beta channel today, and the company plans to roll out the preview for Dev Channel users.down the street. “Your Windows 11 PC must be set to the US region on the beta channel and also requires a US Amazon account to access the Amazon Appstore.