Google brings Android apps to Windows, Mac, Linux, and Chrome OS
(Image Credit: iStockPhoto/juniorbeep)
The ARC project was previously restricted to a small group of select developers who collaborated with Google on allowing Android apps to run on the company's Chrome OS. As of now, Google has launched a new Chrome app packager dubbed 'ARC Welder' which allows Android apps to be run even on rival platforms to increase their reach.
ARC Welder is a simple Chrome app that can handle the mobile-to-desktop conversion in just a few clicks after providing it with your Android application's APK. We gave ARC Welder a go on Windows using the brilliant Sunrise Calendar app which was a seamless experience...
There are a few caveats, however, which let the current version down. First off is that ARC Welder runs on Android 4.4 and therefore won't support some of the features added in Android 5 or the faster ART runtime which debuted with that release.
Secondly, not all Play Services have been integrated yet and therefore some apps will either crash or provide an error when missing services are encountered such as in-app purchasing...
NaCL (abbreviation for "Native Client") is the Chrome sandboxing technology which allows Chrome apps and plugins to run at near-native speeds and take full advantage of the system's CPU and GPU. Google ported a full Android stack to the Native Client which allows Android apps to run on most major operating systems.
Microsoft is attempting to bring applications built for their platform to desktop, tablet, mobile, and console with their unified-approach to Windows 10. Google, in one swift motion, has managed to beat Microsoft to the punch and allows developers to build a single app to deploy across most major platforms.
You can try out ARC Welder for yourself here.
Do you intend to run your Android apps on a different OS? Let us know in the comments.
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