Android app support in Windows 11 delayed, likely until next year
When Microsoft announced Windows 11 earlier this year, it unveiled a lot of exciting new features. For example, it comes with an all-new design, Snap Layouts, Teams Chat, and a lot more. But one of the most interesting features in Windows 11 was that it was going to support Android apps by way of the Amazon Appstore. After the announcement, both Teams Chat and Android app support weren’t in the original previews. But while Teams Chat has been there for a little while now, Android apps still aren’t, and Microsoft confirmed today that the feature isn’t going to be in Windows 11 at launch either.
As of Tuesday morning, there are no more secrets left around Windows 11. Microsoft announced the Windows 11 release date, and it confirmed the features that will be included. Android apps is not one of those features. Specifically, the blog post said that the feature will arrive for Windows Insiders in the coming months, which is exactly the terminology that Microsoft used to describe Android app availability back in June when the first Windows 11 preview was released.
And while Microsoft has continuously said that it’s going to bring Android app support to Windows 11 users later this year, it’s remained tight-lipped about specifics. And yes, the Redmond firm regularly says it’s bringing things to users when it actually means that those things are only coming to Windows Insiders, as misleading as that may be.
I had already heard from sources that Android apps in Windows 11 were delayed. What I wasn’t sure about (and I’m still not sure about) is if the delay comes from development of the Windows Subsystem for Android, or if it comes from Amazon’s end of things with building Appstore integration into the Microsoft Store. I suspect that it’s the latter, as it’s no secret that Microsoft employees have been testing out Android apps on their own devices for a long time now.
There are a few things that can happen here. Microsoft could wait until fall 2022 to release the feature. After all, Windows 11 is only going to be once a year, unlike the biannual schedule that Windows 10 had. It’s possible that the Redmond firm could hold the feature back as a big hero feature for the major update. It’s also possible that Android app support could be delivered as a separate update. The Windows Subsystem for Android could be delivered through Windows Update, and the Amazon Appstore could show up in the Microsoft Store.
Either way, it seems like actual Windows 11 users – meaning those that aren’t beta testers – won’t be seeing Android app support until next year. It’s bad news for those that were looking forward to it. After all, it means that in order to get it, you’ll have to commit to the Windows Insider Program, which can lead you to having a potentially unstable machine for a whole year until next year’s Windows 11 update. Or, you can just buy an Android tablet.