Last year was a strong one for the global PC market. According to Canalys, PC shipments in the winter quarter amounted to 92 million and a record 341 million for 2021 as a whole. It also clocked enormous amounts of revenue – nearly $70 billion in Q4 and over $250 billion in 2021.
Some of the success behind the growth of the PC market can be attributed to Microsoft’s Windows 11, which was released last year. Since it was launched in October, Microsoft witnessed strong demand and preference for the latest operating system, which drove three times more traffic to its redesigned Microsoft Store. Today, Windows 10 and 11 run on 1.4 billion devices globally.
Now, the company teased the release of a public preview of Windows 11, which will see Android apps coming to the PC.
This feature was one that Microsoft had said would be arriving with Windows 11 earlier, but it was missing. However, if you are to believe Microsoft CPO for Windows+Devices, Panos Pinay, that will change in February, which will bring the first big update to Windows 11.
Bringing Android apps to PCs is something that is highly anticipated, and Microsoft has been testing Android apps on Windows 11 for quite some time in a closed beta. Android apps on Windows 11 run on the Windows Subsystem for Android, which is built off of the Windows Subsystem for Linux. Microsoft is launching them in partnership with the Amazon Appstore. It works on devices with at least 8GB of RAM.
What are the other features that will make it to the preview? According to Microsoft, redesigned Notepad and Media Player apps have made the cut, along with some taskbar improvements. The improvements include mute and unmute features, the weather widget coming back to the taskbar, easier window sharing, and others.
If you are a Windows Insider, then the preview of Android apps on Windows 11 is available for you in the Release Preview Channel in the US. Once you can run Android apps on your PC, you can either pin them or run them side-by-side. You will be able to copy and paste clipboard data between Android and Windows apps as well.