Run Android apps on your Windows 10 PC
With Samsung’s Galaxy Note 20 launch this year, Microsoft announced the new Your Phone experience that allows mobile users to run a number of Android apps on their desktop simultaneously. Currently accessible on the Galaxy Note 20, the feature will soon support other devices too. While the Your Phone app already enables Android users to view notifications, texts and files on their Windows 10 PC; the new Android devices can even support this feature and mirror the user’s smartphone screen directly to their PC’s desktop. However, this compatibility is only available with Samsung devices temporarily, but Microsoft has announced further expansions over time.
The new feature allows interaction with a larger screen, by enabling smartphone users to run Android apps on their desktop, using a keyboard and mouse. Users can even pin their favorite apps to the Taskbar or Start menu to facilitate quick and easy access. When launching an Android app, it opens in a separate window on your PC, allowing you to multitask. The Windows 10 desktop also displays Android app notifications. The feature is likely going to enhance overall productivity, especially for those employees who use both phones and desktops to perform their tasks. This integration will enable them to execute tasks from a single source. Similarly, for those who wish to view apps on a larger screen, such as developers and gamers, this feature will add to the overall experience. More importantly in these corona times, when most of us are working from home, this feature can prove really helpful and can actually help eliminate distractions; by allowing you to only open those apps on your PC that are important for your work-related commitments.
For the time being, Your Phone can only enable a single Android app to run on a PC but soon it will support multiple apps at once, as promised by Microsoft. What we already know is that not all Android apps will be supportive of the new Your Phone feature. Microsoft has informed that some may even block the casting ability, enabling a black screen instead. Moreover, some of the apps and games available on Android will also not respond to a mouse or keyboard, while some may play audio via the phone.
Users interested in experiencing the new Your Phone apps feature will need a Samsung device. Microsoft has issued a list of Android phones, but If you’re interested in trying out the new Your Phone apps feature, you’ll need a Samsung device. It will also require you to opt into Windows insider testing. In order to avoid testing full Windows Insider testing, you can opt into the Release Preview ring.
What’s required for a seamless execution?
Other than a Samsung Galaxy handset, you’ll need a PC running the Windows 10 version. You can confirm your version by going to your PC’s settings; enter updates and security to check updates. If it requires you to upgrade, you can download Windows 10 for free. Since its initial release in 2015, Windows 10 has seen several feature updates, with no additional cost to the consumer. Once you get Windows 10, you never have to pay for any upgrades. With more control over the updates, users can even delay updating Windows for a considerable period of time.
To connect your Android phone to your PC, it is important that the device is running on Android 9.0 version. You will also need Link for Windows integration. Most importantly, for the feature to work, the phone and PC should be on the same Wi-Fi network.
This is how you can run Android apps on your Windows 10 PC
Once everything has been updated and your device is successfully connected to the computer, the Your Phone app window will appear on your desktop. In order to open your Android apps on the desktop, you will need to do the following:
The first step is to click the Apps shortcut from the menu, appearing on the left. It will allow you to see a list of all the apps on your phone.
You can now click on the app you wish to test and it should open in a separate window on your desktop.
While not all apps are going to work with a mouse or keyboard, some will.
Below mentioned are a few tips that will help you interact with mobile apps on your desktop, using a mouse or keyboard:
- Single click will aid a single touch/tap interaction.
- To go to the previous page, you can right click anywhere on your phone screen.
- Click and hold will enable the same tap/hold interaction.
- To select content, click, hold and drag.
- Use mouse scroll to move between pages vertically or horizontally.
If you want to run Android apps on your Windows PC, there is no shortage of emulators that you can use. A number of users, such as developers would need it for debugging, gamers can enjoy games on a larger screen, so on so forth. While most of the Emulators are not up to the mark, there are some that allow a seamless integration. Whether you are a developer looking to test out games or a user looking to play games, you will find one that fits your requirements.
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