Almost a full year ago, Google announced that many of its Chromebooks would be getting support for Android apps. That support was supposed to come to as many as 50 devices late last year, but at this point only around six devices have made the cut.
Now, however, there’s some good news — Google is planning to bring Android app support to as many as 80 Chromebooks, including the popular Samsung Chromebook Plus, Chromebook Pro, and Chromebook 3. Of course, just because these devices are “planned” to get Android app support, that doesn’t mean the support will come anytime soon. More devices are also listed in the beta channel, including the Acer Chromebook R13, meaning that support may officially come at some point soon.
Unfortunately, the app support hasn’t been as widespread as some might have hoped. That’s to say, there aren’t all that many apps available for Chromebooks just yet, and the apps that are available are a little buggy and seem like basic blown-up versions of the original Android apps. Still, that’s likely to change in the near future as support improves.
You can check out a full list of Chromebooks that are getting Android app support here at the Chromium blog.
It makes sense that Google would want to bring Android apps to Chromebooks. While Chromebooks have seen serious popularity in some sectors, notably education, Google likely wants to expand that popularity to more markets, and what better way to do it than to tap into the massive ecosystem called the Google Play Store.
Google has also long been rumored to merge Chrome OS — the operating system that runs on Chromebooks — and Android. Some companies, including Microsoft and Samsung, have both launched ways for mobile users to use their phones to power a desktop experience, and it’s likely that Google wants to follow suit.