Ever wish you could run certain Android apps on your Mac? BlueStacks, an Android "app player" for Mac OS X and Windows, may let you do just that. Although still in its early alpha stages for Mac, the platform emulator is available to Apple users right now

Users excited about running their favorite Android apps may want to curb their enthusiasm for now, however. In its current form, BlueStacks' Mac alpha claims to only work with 17 apps thus far. Don't fret though – more will certainly be added and likely very soon. If the Windows version is any indication, the vast majority of Android apps should be BlueStacks-friendly by the time it enters beta.

BlueStacks uses a proprietary technology called "LayerCake" which replicates the necessary environment required by Android apps to run. LayerCake even allows apps written for ARM-based architecture to work on x86 processors, like those we find in nearly all PCs and Macs.

BlueStacks was originally released for Windows in March, a version of the software which continues to reside in beta form. After merely nine days, the software had been downloaded a million times.

For now, the software is completely free. However, BlueStacks is expected to carry a price tag after it matures into a stable, retail-worthy product. Exactly what that price will be and what pricing model the software will follow (e.g. one-time purchase or subscription-based) continues to be an unknown variable.

Users have confirmed that BlueStacks for Mac runs on Snow Leopard. Your mileage may vary with versions older than 10.6.

Download BlueStacks for Windows (beta) or Mac OS X (alpha)