Microsoft is now allowing Windows 11 testers to try out Android apps on the beta channel. Today, beta testers of Windows 11 will be able to download a preview version of the Windows Subsystem for Android, which will give them access to apps from the Amazon Appstore.
Android apps will run on Windows 11 for testers with Intel, AMD, and Qualcomm processors.
Apps can be downloaded from the Microsoft Store, which will display a list of available apps before directing you to the Amazon Appstore to download and install them.
Android apps can coexist with other Windows programs and are also included in Alt + Tab and Task view, as well as being pinned to the Start menu or the taskbar.
“You can see notifications from Android apps notifications in the Action Center or share your clipboard between a Windows app and an Android app,” explains Android on Windows 11 team. “We have built the experience with accessibility in mind; many Windows accessibility settings apply to Android apps and we are working with Amazon to deliver more improvements.”
Microsoft and Amazon collaborated to create a list of 50 apps for Windows Insiders. Lords Mobile, June’s Journey, and Coin Master are just a few examples. There are also reading apps, such as Kindle, as well as children’s apps, such as Lego Duplo World or Khan Academy Kids.
Fifty apps is a tiny selection of the more than three million available on the Google Play Store. It’s not clear how many will be available once this feature is broadly launched for Windows 11.
Microsoft has developed a component that runs on the Linux kernel and an Android OS based on Android Open Source Project (AOSP) version 11 to support Android programs in Windows 11.
“The Subsystem runs in a Hyper-V Virtual Machine, like the Windows Subsystem for Linux,” says Microsoft’s Android apps on Windows 11 team. “It understands how to map the runtime and APIs of apps in the AOSP environment to the Windows graphic layer, the memory buffers, the input modes, the physical and virtual devices, and the sensors.”
This component works with AMD, Intel, and Qualcomm microprocessors. Microsoft has collaborated with Intel to enable Arm-only apps to run on AMD and Intel devices, which is supported by this subsystem.