Cameyo brings cloud-powered Windows applications to the Chrome OS app drawer
There are a few different methods for using Windows applications on Chromebooks, but one of the more popular options for businesses and schools has been Cameyo, which hosts Windows apps in the cloud for remote access on Chromebooks. Cameyo is now rolling out a few improvements to its customers, allowing Windows apps to appear in the Chrome OS app drawer alongside web and Android apps.
Cameyo isn’t available to individuals, but businesses and schools using Cameyo’s Virtual Application Delivery (VAD) platform now have access to the new web app mode and Google Admin integration. The end result is that IT admins can set up Microsoft Office and other traditional Windows applications to appear in the app drawer for managed Chromebooks, and opening the shortcuts will open the remote applications in a dedicated window.
Cameyo is calling this a Progressive Web App mode, but there’s no offline capabilities or code running on the Chromebook itself — it’s just a normal shortcut that initializes the remote application without any of the usual Windows interface elements. Still, depending on the latency, this seems like a great solution for organizations with Chromebook deployments that still need the occasional Windows-only application.
Google recognized Cameyo as a Chrome Enterprise Recommended Partner back in February, apparently becoming one of only three such services for virtualization. Google has also been working with Parallels to bring its desktop virtualization software to Chrome OS, which is also only available to organizations.
For normal people without a corporate-managed Chromebook, the Wine project (and its various third-party front ends) is still the best way to run Windows software on a Chromebook. Wine can run on Chromebooks using the Linux apps container, and translates Windows code to run under Linux without any virtual machines or Windows licenses. Wine doesn’t offer full compatibility, though, which is where solutions like Parallels and Cameyo come in.