Microsoft hurled a pleasant surprise when it announced the arrival of Android apps on the Windows 11 operating system back in June 2021. And now, staying true to its promise, the Redmond tech company has officially commenced the process of bringing the capability to run Android applications on devices running the latest Windows 11 OS. As is the case with any new Windows features, the Azure cloud service provider is starting the testing phase with Insiders in the Preview Build Program.
According to an official statement from the firm, Windows Insiders enrolled in the Beta Channel, located in the United States, and using Windows 11 Build 22000.xxx builds can proceed to download Android apps from Microsoft Store.
To wit, the Build 22000 series is the one that is accessible to the public. Whereas getting the preview of Android apps on Windows 11 is not possible for Dev Channel Insiders right away, as they can only test the latest features through the development branch. However, Brandon LeBlanc from the Windows development unit reiterates that Insiders in Dev Channel are likely to receive the preview “down the road”.
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How To Run Android Apps On Windows 11
Here are official guidelines from Microsoft with regards to running Android apps on Windows 11 devices:
- Your PC needs to be on Windows 11 (Build 22000.xxx series builds) and meet these hardware requirements.
- You may need to enable virtualization for your PC’s BIOS/UEFI. Click here for a guide on how to enable this on your PC.
- Your PCs’ region must be set to the U.S.
- Your PC must be in the Beta Channel. If you are new to the Windows Insider Program, click here to get started with registration and joining your PC to the Beta Channel.
- You will also need to have a U.S.-based Amazon account to use the Amazon Appstore.
Once you’re ready, go to this link to launch Microsoft Store and follow on-screen instructions. Wait for it to complete the device requirements verification. If your computer passes the check, the program will set up the environment in which you can use Android apps on Windows 11.
As we mentioned earlier, all this becomes possible owing to a new functionality known as Windows Subsystem for Android (WSA), which became available on 20 October with version 1.7.32815.0.
The company says “You will see a listing for it under your Start menu where you can adjust specific settings for the experience.”
Furthermore, all eligible devices will get automatic Subsustem updates through Microsoft Store. But if it requires a restart, Microsoft says that the Amazon Appstore offering Android apps would launch on its own after the reboot, or you can simply open it from the Start menu.
Before you test the new Amazon Appstore on your PC Windows 11 or laptop, make sure to go through the following known issues currently active in the firmware that may throw spanner in the works.
Know Issues With Android Apps On Windows 11
- The Microsoft Store does not display review ratings for Amazon Appstore apps.
- If you are experiencing Amazon App Store sign in problems turn your Ad Blocker off.
- Accessibility options are not yet enabled when using the Amazon Appstore.
[Windows Subsystem for Android]
- Network access issues on Cellular LTE on ARM64.
- May see display visual artifacts on certain applications on ARM64.
- Performance may vary when running multiple concurrent Apps.
- There are known camera issues on certain apps.
- Apps coming out of modern standby will encounter issues.
For more, you can find all the relevant details in the official blog post. Since these are still early days for Android apps support on Windows 11, expect a few issues to sporadically pop up.