WindowsAndroid brings Ice Cream Sandwich to PCs

Posted by Trent Nouveau

WindowsAndroid allows users to run Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) on Windows PCs and tablets.

Indeed, the app offers a full-on Android experience, supporting the web browser, gallery, built-in software and even third party apps (with some work).

Additional goodies include the stock Android user interface (UI), a Dalvik virtual machine and graphics acceleration support.

As Liliputing's Brad Linder notes, WindowsAndroid can be loaded on a Windows-powered tablet (or hybrid), allowing users to interact with the software via a touch-screen, keyboard or mouse.

However, be aware that even though Google Play Store can be installed in a roundabout fashion, most apps in the expansive market will show up as incompatible with your device. Apps can be side-loaded placing the APK files in the \SocketeQ\windowsandroid_root\data\app directory and then restarting the program, although this may cause WindowsAndroid to crash in some cases. As such, WindowsAndroid should be considered a work in progress with significant potential for future releases.

Interested? You can request access to an early release build here.

In the meantime, you may also want to check out Bluestacks, which enables Android apps to run in windowed or fullscreen mode on a PC or Mac. It should be noted that a number of prominent devs behind top apps like Fruit Ninja, SliceIt!, Barnes & Noble's Nook, Townsmen, Evernote, Defender and StumbleUpon have partnered up with BlueStacks in recent months.

"A billion PCs is a huge potential market for any developer. There is the potential to make good money from the additional app discovery and usage... [And] the best part is, we don't have to do any work. Our apps run without any modifications or porting," said Markus Kassulke, CEO of HandyGames.

"[We have] a history of trying new things and seeing what sticks. Working with BlueStacks on the PC version has gotten us a boatload of new discovery for Clouds & Sheep and our other apps. We're looking forward to this next frontier."