Microsoft is set to talk more about “what’s next for Windows” at a June 24 event, but some of the under-the-hood work on the rumored new Windows 11 operating system might have just been revealed. There is now some evidence that Microsoft could be working on a native Android emulator for Windows, according to a new report from MSPoweruser.
Fueling the report is a specific entry in the changelog for the latest Windows Subsystem for Linux release. The logs have two specific mentions of Android. One highlights “fix android emulator window is not movable when no frame.” Another mentions “fix android emulator window doesn’t move and crash at minimizing.”
The Windows Subsystem for Linux is designed for developers, so it’s no surprise to see mention of Android there. It is more likely that the changelog just refers to the bugs developers could face when working on their apps. However, there is still a small chance that it is something bigger.
Microsoft could be using emulation in the Windows Subsystem for Linux as more of a basis for bringing native Android apps to Windows and the Microsoft Store. At the end of 2020, rumors indicated that Microsoft was working with developers to do just that, with a project known as “Latte.”
Of course, since most apps depend on Google Play Services, the scope of which Android apps would work would have been limited. But combined with the mentions of Android in the changelog, this suggests that it could in fact be a reality for the next version of Windows.
It is a bit of a stretch, but Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella might have even appeared to tease this during the Build 2021 developer conference. In his keynote, he mentioned that ” soon we will share one of the most significant updates to Windows of the past decade to unlock greater economic opportunity for developers and creators.”
Nadella didn’t stop there. He also mentioned, welcoming “every creator who is looking for the most innovative, new, open platform to build and distribute and monetize applications.”
It is looking like this is a new Microsoft Store with Android apps, but time will tell. In the meantime, it is possible to run Android apps on Windows through the Your Phone app and Link to Windows, or through third-party programs.
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