Windows 8 to run Android apps via BlueStacks

Windows 8 already has plans to offer a way to directly purchase and download new programs via the Windows Store when it launches (hopefully) later this year. Now BlueStacks plans to offer up an app player that will allow Windows 8 to run all of the hundreds of thousands of apps on Google's Android Marketplace.

BlueStacks has already offered up its Android app player for Windows 7 and Vista back in October 2011. The upcoming Windows 8 version will take advantage of the operating system's Metro interface. As you can see in the above video, Android apps will have their own icons that will blend seamlessly into Windows 8's new touch screen user interface.

Venture Beat reports via CES 2012 that BlueStacks is hoping to making deals with makers of Windows 8-based notebooks and ultrabooks to pre-load its Android app player into their PCs. In fact it claims to have already signed an agreement with one of the, the Taiwan-based notebook maker InHon.

All in all it sounds like Windows 8 users won't lack for apps to play when the OS is finally released.

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xpclient said,
So anyone tried this on Windows 7 and does the alpha version expire and how stable is it?

The current alpha doesn't expire, and runs on Windows 7 (even x64) just fine - provided you have at least a quad-core CPU; however, the same is true of most desktop-virtualization software - even VirtualBox or VMware.

Wouldn't it be the same as just turning off your firewall, delete your antivirus programs, open your WiFi to "all" and turning off your "junk" email filter. And then engage in the appropriate behavior like clicking on every link in every "junk" email. Load thumbdrives found in public. Of course if the droidie apps crash your Windows it will of course be 'Softie's fault. Why not just keep them on Google's sandbox (kitty liter).

starch said,
Wouldn't it be the same as just turning off your firewall, delete your antivirus programs, open your WiFi to "all" and turning off your "junk" email filter. And then engage in the appropriate behavior like clicking on every link in every "junk" email. Load thumbdrives found in public. Of course if the droidie apps crash your Windows it will of course be 'Softie's fault. Why not just keep them on Google's sandbox (kitty liter).

Um they will be sandboxed... WinRT various technologies are also sandboxed, and IE that can run inside Metro is also sandboxed.

Android is a security concern, but it should only hurt other Android Apps.

Two things I think this should have:

- ability to "pin" an Android app to the Start screen, for easier access (this is similar to pinning webpages to the Start screen with IE)
- a version for ARM Windows 8 that eliminates the overhead of processor emulation

This whole story makes me snicker considering a week or two ago I was obsessed with the idea of integrating an Android run-time into Windows 8.

I'm not too worried about the quality of the apps, since many games and apps scale in resolution surprisingly well, and nothing would ever need more than 2x zoom thanks to handset resolution getting higher and higher.

At any rate, I think it's silly to get angry about anything related to this story. So what if a company is pursuing this? Windows is an open platform. People can write whatever software they like.

Joshie said,
This whole story makes me snicker considering a week or two ago I was obsessed with the idea of integrating an Android run-time into Windows 8.

I'm not too worried about the quality of the apps, since many games and apps scale in resolution surprisingly well, and nothing would ever need more than 2x zoom thanks to handset resolution getting higher and higher.

At any rate, I think it's silly to get angry about anything related to this story. So what if a company is pursuing this? Windows is an open platform. People can write whatever software they like.


Precisely!

Windows 8 already has millions of "apps" they are called programs they've been around since windows 1...

but seriously though, this whole who has the most apps stuff is annoying especially when it comes to a desktop system which already has way more apps then anyone is going to count... oh wait no you dont consider it an app if it isn't downloaded through an app store? psh......

neufuse said,
Windows 8 already has millions of "apps" they are called programs they've been around since windows 1....

Except your x86 (8-bit, 16-bit) applications won't run on x86-64 bit. x86 binaries won't run on ARM. This is a bridge to get existing ARM apps runnin in Windows, while legacy Application (see not programs) developers, re-tool their apps to be cross platform in Metro fashion.

Full screen Metro apps designed for a tablet? That's what this is about. Yes, Windows 8 will have hundreds of thousands of programs available. Most of them will need to be adapted to use the MetroUI. I seriously doubt you could work with Excel in it's current form on a tablet (I don't know how that would adapt to a touchscreen, but we'll see).

neufuse said,
Windows 8 already has millions of "apps" they are called programs they've been around since windows 1...

but seriously though, this whole who has the most apps stuff is annoying especially when it comes to a desktop system which already has way more apps then anyone is going to count... oh wait no you dont consider it an app if it isn't downloaded through an app store? psh......

PC509 said,
Full screen Metro apps designed for a tablet? That's what this is about. Yes, Windows 8 will have hundreds of thousands of programs available. Most of them will need to be adapted to use the MetroUI. I seriously doubt you could work with Excel in it's current form on a tablet (I don't know how that would adapt to a touchscreen, but we'll see).

Office since 2007 was designed for tablets, that was one of their big pushes with 2007 was it was tablet friendly

dotf said,

Except your x86 (8-bit, 16-bit) applications won't run on x86-64 bit. x86 binaries won't run on ARM. This is a bridge to get existing ARM apps runnin in Windows, while legacy Application (see not programs) developers, re-tool their apps to be cross platform in Metro fashion.

8 bit apps? seriously? Windows apps have been a minimum 16 bit since windows 2, and there are millions of 32 bit apps already, hundreds of thousands of .NET apps that can be cross compiled to any arch...

my point is this whole "we have more apps" thing is stupid because we are classifying apps as a small subset of everything that can run on the device...

dotf said,

Except your x86 (8-bit, 16-bit) applications won't run on x86-64 bit. x86 binaries won't run on ARM. This is a bridge to get existing ARM apps runnin in Windows, while legacy Application (see not programs) developers, re-tool their apps to be cross platform in Metro fashion.

x86(8bit Assuming DOS stuff, right?, and 16bit) run just fine on x64. There is a feature called Virtual PC, and if you have the Professional or Ultimate edition, it is seamlessly integrated, just install the image for XP or even Win 3.1 if you want.

They run fine in the VM, and with the seamless integration, you don't even notice it is old crap software running except the UI border is different.

As for ARM, um... Not so fast. True x86 binaries won't run, but that doesn't mean .NET/Silverlight/etc won't run even if they have to have a realtime translation.

As for x86 binaries, because of how Windows NT works through a universal HAL, there is no reason that most developers can't simply recompile for ARM rather easily, unless they have used direct assembly in the application. And even then, adjust the assembly, and recompile.

Think back to last year, Microsoft was using an ARM tablet, and had Word, Excel, and even a build of Mozilla running on it. If the 'recompile' process was much work, do you think they would have had these running so quickly and easily? You realize that next to Windows itself, Word and Excel are the most complex pieces of software ever written? And if they can recompile them for ARM for a quick demonstration in a few days, I don't see the ARM issue being a problem.


It won't be of much use. The major Android apps that people would use this program for will be ported to Windows 8 by launch or soon thereafter. The very few others that are "Android Only" will be on such a small scale, they might find a suitable replacement for Windows.

PC509 said,

It won't be of much use. The major Android apps that people would use this program for will be ported to Windows 8 by launch or soon thereafter. The very few others that are "Android Only" will be on such a small scale, they might find a suitable replacement for Windows.

They won't be ported otherwise they would ALREADY be ported, that's just genius! <rolling eyes>. You missed the point, it's not that they need to port the apps, they can make the apps (as they ARE) to Windows without modification....

It's an app that ALLOWS droid apps to run... why do you people feel the need to make this so complicated?

PC509 said,

It won't be of much use. The major Android apps that people would use this program for will be ported to Windows 8 by launch or soon thereafter. The very few others that are "Android Only" will be on such a small scale, they might find a suitable replacement for Windows.

They won't be ported otherwise they would ALREADY be ported, that's just genius! <rolling eyes>. You missed the point, it's not that they need to port the apps, they can make the apps (as they ARE) to Windows without modification....

It's an app that ALLOWS droid apps to run... why do you people feel the need to make this so complicated?

Why, when they can run natively without emulation or requires a third party product to be installed?

rijp said,

They won't be ported otherwise they would ALREADY be ported, that's just genius! <rolling eyes>. You missed the point, it's not that they need to port the apps, they can make the apps (as they ARE) to Windows without modification....

It's an app that ALLOWS droid apps to run... why do you people feel the need to make this so complicated?

PsYcHoKiLLa said,
Tried the BlueStacks App, at the moment it doesn't seem to run much of anything

Beats me why you just got assaulted for your comment. But you're right in that BlueStacks has a lot of limitations, and it's a result of several factors I've noticed through tinkering.

It's an out of date Android run-time, for starters. If you'd like, you can play with the trial version of YouWave, which claims to be Gingerbread compatible.

It doesn't offer any of the connectivity stuff many apps rely on. If you have a paid app that checks a license against a server, it'll probably fail to run. Anything that wants to talk to the Market, etc, will probably fail. Anything that wants to talk to particular hardware will probably fail.

Its model of syncing apps directly from your phone through the cloud is clever and a direction worth pursuing, but without something in place to handle the variety of calls apps make, it's not going to gain much traction.

That's not to say they won't figure something out!

PsYcHoKiLLa said,
Tried the BlueStacks App, at the moment it doesn't seem to run much of anything

Well, there's its own App Store, (which, you're right, doesn't have much,) there's the Cloud Connect App for transferring apps from you're phone, or you could hack the Android Market on it. BTW, the Win 8 one will use the Android Market...

I dont get it i was banns for posting cuz some comment i make about Microsoft but i see this guy (Dot Matrix) making bad comment about Android and he get free pass .

Gaara sama said,
I dont get it i was banns for posting cuz some comment i make about Microsoft but i see this guy (Dot Matrix) making bad comment about Android and he get free pass .

It's no secret many Android apps are.... lacking in quality.

Gaara sama said,
I dont get it i was banns for posting cuz some comment i make about Microsoft but i see this guy (Dot Matrix) making bad comment about Android and he get free pass .

I've seen much more critical comments posted (Against Microsoft and others), so whatever you said to get you banned, must have been one whopper of a comment... lol

M_Lyons10 said,

I've seen much more critical comments posted (Against Microsoft and others), so whatever you said to get you banned, must have been one whopper of a comment... lol

lol just don't mess around in the Mac forums. They come down on you quick.

The question is will this benefit Google, or will it hurt them.
It would attract more people to Windows 8, but it will also benefit Android marketplace.


But in the end, the product itself, is doa. Windows 8 would not only get those Apps, but even more. Well, eventually!

FMH said,
The question is will this benefit Google, or will it hurt them.
It would attract more people to Windows 8, but it will also benefit Android marketplace.


But in the end, the product itself, is doa. Windows 8 would not only get those Apps, but even more. Well, eventually!


Its not going to benefit anyone! and this is not going to attract people to Windows 8 either since they are already available to Windows 7,Vista and Xp. I have tried the app once and it slowed down the PC considerably.
Windows 8 will attract people by itself because its awesome.

still1 said,

Its not going to benefit anyone! and this is not going to attract people to Windows 8 either since they are already available to Windows 7,Vista and Xp. I have tried the app once and it slowed down the PC considerably.
Windows 8 will attract people by itself because its awesome.

Of course, that's true!
But I would it calling "another" selling point.

And wouldn't this benefit Google, when people purchase apps, or use apps which have ads.

FMH said,

Of course, that's true!
But I would it calling "another" selling point.

And wouldn't this benefit Google, when people purchase apps, or use apps which have ads.


yes, but not by a lot... I think the appeal for this app is lot less that what we are thinking. Its just runs like a virtual machine!! phone OS inside PC.

FMH said,
The question is will this benefit Google, or will it hurt them.
It would attract more people to Windows 8, but it will also benefit Android marketplace.


But in the end, the product itself, is doa. Windows 8 would not only get those Apps, but even more. Well, eventually!


Last time I checked Windows 8 doesn't have a competitor in Android...

And no, it won't hurt Google from the Chrome OS perspective, as Chrome OS is everything but what it carries in its name, IMHO.

GS:mac

still1 said,

Its not going to benefit anyone! and this is not going to attract people to Windows 8 either since they are already available to Windows 7,Vista and Xp. I have tried the app once and it slowed down the PC considerably.
Windows 8 will attract people by itself because its awesome.

What CPU/GPU do you have?

The BlueStacks application for Windows 7 is definitely for quad-core CPUs, as opposed to dual-core; I tried it on an E3400, and the lack of cache and two cores, crippled usage severely, while the Q6600 I'm running today (same hardware otherwise, and, in fact, 200 MHz slower) has nary a lick of trouble. If you're considering BlueStacks (or a similar application), go i5 (preferably i5-K if you plan on overclockage).

Glassed Silver said,

Last time I checked Windows 8 doesn't have a competitor in Android...

And no, it won't hurt Google from the Chrome OS perspective, as Chrome OS is everything but what it carries in its name, IMHO.

GS:mac


Well, Chrome OS may be a competitor on desktops/laptops, but on tablets, Android is one.

PGHammer said,

What CPU/GPU do you have?

The BlueStacks application for Windows 7 is definitely for quad-core CPUs, as opposed to dual-core; I tried it on an E3400, and the lack of cache and two cores, crippled usage severely, while the Q6600 I'm running today (same hardware otherwise, and, in fact, 200 MHz slower) has nary a lick of trouble. If you're considering BlueStacks (or a similar application), go i5 (preferably i5-K if you plan on overclockage).


On Core 2 Duo E8400 @3.00Ghz
It slowed down a lot.

MASTER260 said,

Well, Chrome OS may be a competitor on desktops/laptops, but on tablets, Android is one.

You really think that a tablet sized PC will handle this kind of emulation well?
Let alone after some time when more apps matured to be more resource hungry -> yay for emulation!

Hmmm...
Also, I'd not like to put my app data at stakes (3rd party dev dependency, yehaaa!)

GS:mac

Glassed Silver said,

You really think that a tablet sized PC will handle this kind of emulation well?
Let alone after some time when more apps matured to be more resource hungry -> yay for emulation!

Hmmm...
Also, I'd not like to put my app data at stakes (3rd party dev dependency, yehaaa!)

GS:mac


I wasn't talking about that, I was talking about whether or not Android is a competitor to Win 8...

MASTER260 said,

Well, Chrome OS may be a competitor on desktops/laptops, but on tablets, Android is one.

Chrome OS is a competitor to netbooks. Not desktops. However I think it is a failure. Don't get me wrong. I love my CR-48 but I got it for free.

Android is a competitor to Windows Phone and iOS not Windows 8. It is a competitor to Windows 8 on Tablets only.

Glassed Silver said,

You really think that a tablet sized PC will handle this kind of emulation well?
Let alone after some time when more apps matured to be more resource hungry -> yay for emulation!

Hmmm...
Also, I'd not like to put my app data at stakes (3rd party dev dependency, yehaaa!)

GS:mac

It will enough for a transitional period, and with support from Microsoft on the project, the performance should increase considerably.

The real problem is Android and the JVM are pigs and the resulting applications are pigs in terms of resource and processing. Android needs as much RAM and CPU power as Windows 7 - the deskop OS. Stop and think about it for a moment, Android 2.3 or 4.0 needs at least 512mb of RAM to run reasonable, Windows 7 can run reasonable on 512mb of RAM and a 800mhz PIII, which is below the average Android Phone CPU considerably.

This should have been giving people 'pause' for a long time, but somehow it was cool to make fun of Vista for needing 512mb of RAM, and yet a couple years later, a phone OS that has taken the world was even more of a pig.

And people wonder why WP7 users are happy with their phones, as they are light, and fast, navigating information on a WP7 device even without the UI innovations is significantly faster than Android, and you don't have to worry about closing 'important' Apps in the background like Android does - since it lacks even a proper memory manager that makes Windows 3.0 look like Star Trek in comparison.

Which is why even the slowest WP7 phone is STILL faster than then top spec'd Android Phone today. (There tests are out there - Memory, CPU, UI, Graphical, GPU, OpenGL ES vs DirectX, and even HTML5 tests that all show WP7 to be significantly faster with an OS that when running uses 1/10 the RAM Android does.)

This is why the Android emulation is 'hard' not that the hardware is that different. WP7 emulation on a Netbook is easy, and with some 'tricks' from Microsoft, maybe they can get Android Apps to run in a better VM than Android itself provides Apps.


UndergroundWire said,

How about enterprise?

The Enterprise appears to be running a futuristic version of Windows 8. Only instead of square Metro tiles, it opts for rounded corners in the LCARS interface.

UndergroundWire said,

Chrome OS is a competitor to netbooks. Not desktops. However I think it is a failure. Don't get me wrong. I love my CR-48 but I got it for free.

Android is a competitor to Windows Phone and iOS not Windows 8. It is a competitor to Windows 8 on Tablets only.


Well, I kinda said that Windows 8 is a competitor on tablets only...


Also, the CR-48 was kinda a prototype Chromebook. The final ones cost money. But, I do agree it's a failure. If only someone had the impact that Google had, but made a cloud OS more like Joli OS, (i.e. not locking you into a browser,) than we might have had a fairly successful one. Kinda, though.

EDIT: Also, making the Chromium OS source the only version you can officially install on a non-Chromebook computer didn't help...

still1 said,

On Core 2 Duo E8400 @3.00Ghz
It slowed down a lot.

That's why I said it's more a lack-of-cores issue - BlueStacks is like VM software (VirtualBox, VMware, etc.) of a specific sort (it's a dedicated Android VM for Windows); how much single-core Froyo-or-better Android hardware is out there today?

When they mentioned for Windows 8 I thought they meant an actual metro style app. But if it's a desktop app, why do they have to specifically call it for Windows 8? When it works on 7 too?

Possession said,
When they mentioned for Windows 8 I thought they meant an actual metro style app. But if it's a desktop app, why do they have to specifically call it for Windows 8? When it works on 7 too?

Except it is a Metro app. Actually, what's interesting is it makes the Android apps themselves Metro apps, which is, frankly, awesome.

BTW, a few months ago I suggested they have some Metro on their FB Page & they said they're, "really interested," in it...

[quote=Josh the Nerd said,]A desktop version for Windows 7 exists now. This article announces an upcoming Metro version for Windows 8.[/quote
Hmm... I read an article on another site and claimed it would be a desktop app. But if it's Metro then I can't wait!