Microsoft reportedly considers bringing Android apps to Windows

By on February 13, 2014, 9:00 AM
microsoft, windows, android

One of the biggest challenges Microsoft faces today is the widening app deficit. The company's app stores, both on Windows and Windows Phone, are lacking popular titles. The situation can be gauged from the fact that it took three years for Instagram to arrive on Windows Phone, and viral sensation Flappy Bird never even made it.

The situation has taken a complex turn, with new customers unlikely to embrace Microsoft's mobile platform and Modern UI on the desktop unless there are apps, and developers unwilling to develop apps if there are no customers. Looking for a way out of this vicious cycle, the company is considering allowing Google's Android apps to run on its Windows and Windows Phone platforms, if a report from The Verge is to be believed.

Close to 80% of smartphones today run Android, and most developers release their apps for both Android and iOS simultaneously. Running Android apps on Windows and Windows Phone would at least serve as a band-aid for Microsoft. There is no confirmation from Microsoft, but adding weight to the rumors is talk of Nokia's Android phone, which is scheduled to be officially unveiled at this month's Mobile World Conference.

Of course, not everybody at Microsoft is convinced with the idea (Android apps couldn't save BlackBerry, after all). As per the report, many believe that this change would lead to the death of the Windows platform. Meanwhile, it is not yet clear if the software giant is looking to partner with a third party (Intel or AMD) to help the company bring Android apps to the Windows platform, should it decide to move ahead with the plan.




User Comments: 9

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MilwaukeeMike said:

Great idea! reminds of that expression though... A day late and a dollar short.

As per the report, many believe that this change would lead to the death of the Windows platform.

Why? Are there some awesome windows only apps out there that would be lost forever? No, there aren't. The only thing that would happen by Windows phones running Android apps that people would have one less reason NOT to buy a windows phone. Right now the app library is a big reason people leave Windows on the shelf. Getting rid of that reason would help the platform, not kill it.

Remember in the 80s when Apple didn't let anyone make computers that ran Apple's software? They wanted Macs to be pure and special.. and they were. they were also forgotten and doomed to the history of technology in the section of 'biggest mistakes ever'.

1 person liked this | treeski treeski said:

The only thing that would happen by Windows phones running Android apps that people would have one less reason NOT to buy a windows phone. Right now the app library is a big reason people leave Windows on the shelf. Getting rid of that reason would help the platform, not kill it.

I think the argument is that it would further reduce any interest developers have in making native Windows Phone apps. Why bother making a WP app when an Android one already exists that will work?

Heihachi1337 said:

Maybe Microsoft will learn from past mistakes this time under new leadership. It seems Steve Balmer was bent on destroying them with the bad publicity the Xbox One got initially before they did a 180 on it. That and Windows 8 being terrible.

I use an Android phone for two reasons:

1) I hate Apple and their entire user base

2) Microsoft has ZERO apps for me that I find essential. I'm a gamer, I play certain online games and MS does not have apps for those games.

I find it interesting that there is no end to the games I can add to my library for my PC yet I can't get a friggin' app for a Microsoft Windows phone for popular games.

MilwaukeeMike said:

I think the argument is that it would further reduce any interest developers have in making native Windows Phone apps. Why bother making a WP app when an Android one already exists that will work?

Yeah I see... I thought they meant the entire Windows Phone OS. I think letting the apps die would be ok though. Although allowing android apps would mean people would want to use gmail/google drive etc, and not MS's services of Sky drive and hotmail.

Guest said:

This would be great if they started to allow android apps... I 100% loved my Surface tab, but the App store was useless

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

The new CEO must have a brain. (y) Can't say that I care, but I approve of the concept.

It is my understanding that there is no reason why an x86-64 OS can't run RISC applications.

tipstir tipstir, TS Ambassador, said:

But Android apps always in update mode. But those are Java base. Why can't MS get programmer to build Metro App what we have not most are nonsense. Free Android apps have more ads in there. Google block Adfree you can get it from Adfree web site.

gamoniac said:

I think the argument is that it would further reduce any interest developers have in making native Windows Phone apps. Why bother making a WP app when an Android one already exists that will work?

Yeah I see... I thought they meant the entire Windows Phone OS. I think letting the apps die would be ok though. Although allowing android apps would mean people would want to use gmail/google drive etc, and not MS's services of Sky drive and hotmail.

Due to that reason, I think MS will not go this route -- the whole Win AppStore would be forsaken. The alternative would be to make a tool that facilitate the conversion of apps from Android to WP. If WebOS can do it, MS can probably do it too. I just don't know if it would be beneficial to the MS ecosystem. Maybe.

kissx kissx said:

Microsoft is always a step behind. Remember Zune?

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