The biggest news Microsoft had on Windows 11 launch besides Windows 11, was that now you could run Android apps in the OS, thanks to a partnership between Microsoft and Amazon. With this decision, Microsoft has drastically improved the Windows experience. While Microsoft Store has some decent apps, it is nowhere as good as the Android apps. Microsoft also announced that they will be releasing the feature completely at a later date.
Cut to four months, and we are finally here. The highly anticipated feature is available but for only US customers for now. Here’s what you have to do to set up the officially approved Android apps:
How to Set Up Officially Approved Android Apps on Windows 11
As long as the Android apps you want to install are officially approved, this part becomes very easy. But first, these are the specifications your laptop has to have to be compatible with the apps:
- Minimum 8 GB RAM (Recommended 16 GB RAM)
- Intel Core i3 8th Gen, AMD Ryzen 3000, or Qualcomm Snapdragon 8c CPU
- 720p Display
- SSD Storage
- Windows 11 build 22000.426 or higher
- Latest Microsoft Store Version
If you are in match with the compatibility section, most PCs that are able to run Windows 11 should be able to do the task without any issues. Make sure to update your Windows and Microsoft Store. Once all that is done, all you have to do is:
Step 1. Click on “Microsoft Store” and search for “Amazon Appstore Preview”.
Step 2. Install the Software (It will also install the Windows Subsystem for Android [WSA]).
After the completion of the installation, you are all set and ready to go.
Step 3. Go to the Search Bar and search for “Amazon Appstore” and create or Log In an Amazon Account.
Now you can install more than 1000 apps with more being added soon.
What is the experience of Android Apps on Windows 11?
If we look away from the different asthetic, the Android apps mostly run as smoothly as any regular Windows software. The apps can also be seen in the Start menu just like the Windows software and you can also pin them on your Taskbar. The apps can easily be controlled by your mouse, keyboard, or touch input. If you want to resize them, that is also easily done, but do keep in mind that not all of the Android apps are optimized for landscape mode.
The main difference you will notice while running the Android apps is that you will have to wait for Windows Subsystem to load first (which can be a little tedious aka slow). If you are planning to run Android apps often on your Windows 11, you can easily head over to the Start menu, from there you can start Windows Subsystem and go to Android Settings, which is dubbed as ‘Subsystem resources’, and select the ‘Continuous’ option. This selection will keep the WSA running on your PC in the background, which will help you load apps instantly. But this could also affect your PC’s performance.
You can also see files associated with or downloaded by Android apps in the settings menu, also you can choose which GPU, you’d like to use to power graphics.
How to Install Unapporved Android Apps on Windows 11:
If you have used Amazon Appstore, you can see that most of the officially approved apps on the service are not very exciting, and as far as we know Google wasn’t really involved in creating this feature. So, any apps that rely on Google Services, are not available on the Amazon Appstore.
While we do recommend that you only use the officially approved apps, there are many ways you can sideload apps on Windows 11. But to do that you will have to work a bit harder, and any apps that require Google Services won’t be easy to find or run on the OS. Even though it’s not easy that doesn’t mean it’s impossible as many have been successful in sideloading unapproved Android apps on Windows 11 and running them.
So, firstly you have to know that while sideloading unapproved apps, you have to practice extreme caution and also there’s a good chance that the apps you install will work a bit wonky or they won’t work at all. With that being said let’s see how you can install unapproved Android apps on your Windows 11, as easily as it can be done.
Step 1. Enable Developer Mode in WSA Settings
Step 2. Install WSATools from Microsoft Store (It installs the Android Debug Bridge which is required for sideloading apps)
Step 3. Install ADB from WSATools (Some users have experienced difficulty in installing ADB from WSATools, in that case you will have to download it from Google manually)
You can then easily install any app of which you have an APK file of, as this allows you to install APK files into your system.
Just click on the APK file and it should install easily.
So, at last, we only wish that sideloading Android apps won’t be necessary for much longer and Microsoft and Google will come with their features that allow us to install the Android apps into our Windows very easily.