How To Install Android Apps on Windows 11


Microsoft tried for years to offer an alternative for Android and iOS with its Windows Phone. Although Windows Phone managed to conquer some fans across the world for its unique visuals and features, Microsoft decided to ultimately bury all the investment made in the OS. Instead of fighting them, the company decided to “join” them or to be more precise to put itself into these OS. Nowadays, the company offers some of its apps and services in Android and to attract Android users to its ecosystem is offering Android app compatibility on Windows 11.

With the most recent updates to Windows 11, Microsoft finally allows non-developers to install Android apps on their computers. Since Google Play Store can’t be installed on Windows 11, the process of installing Android apps happens thanks to a partnership with Amazon Appstore. To install Android apps, you will need to set up a Windows Subsystem for Android, if it’s not already available on your PC. The next step is to install the Amazon Appstore app and enable virtualization. In this guide, we will teach you how to install Android apps on your Windows 11 PC. This is quite useful if you’re a power PC user and aren’t happy with the web versions of certain applications.

Imagine having the mobile Instagram experience on a Windows PC. As you may know, Instagram web limits its functionalities. Also, you can bring some apps that are exclusive to mobile devices like a parcel tracking app, etc. In this article, we will teach how to set up your Android subsystem and start installing apps on Windows 11. Obviously, playing with Android apps on Windows has been possible for years, but unofficially thanks to emulators like BlueStacks. However, in this article, we will talk about native support.

How to install Android apps on Windows 11

To install Android apps on Windows 11, you will need Amazon App Store and the Windows Subsystem. You should already have the Windows Subsystem for Android if you’re running one of the latest Windows 11 updates. But in case you don’t, you can re-download it from Microsoft Store. Have in mind that it may not be compatible with your device if you’re running Windows 11 unofficially. Re-download it from the Microsoft Store.

Step 1: Open the Microsoft Store by using the Windows + S keys and searching for “Microsoft Store.”

Step 2: Search for “Amazon Appstore” and select the app. If does not shows up for you, your device may not be compatible.

Step 3: Select Get.

Step 4: Perhaps at this point yo will need to enable virtualization on your PC. Windows 11 can do this automatically, as well as set up the Windows Subsystem for Android if you don’t have it installed. You will see a prompt, select Set up >> Download >> Next >> Restart. Follow the prompts from Microsoft Store. You will need to re-start your computer.

Step 5: Once your PC completes the restart, the Windows Subsystem for Android will appear and then the Amazon Appstore app will open automatically afterward.

Step 6: Sign into your Amazon account (or create a new one). Start downloading Android apps on Windows.

It is worth noting that you’re restricted to the Amazon Appstore on Windows 11. Some apps may not be available from there. However, there is still a long list of applications that you can download from the app. For example, TikTok is a possibility here. If you want to explore outside of Amazon App Store, it’s also possible to sideload Android apps on Windows 11. However, these aren’t supported and you will need to proceed at your own risk.

How to Sideload Apps on Windows 11

As you’ve learned, Windows 11 official support for Android apps means you will be installing apps via Amazon App Store. However, that does not mean that you can’t install apps in unofficial ways. Well, if the support is there, you can install still try installing apps by sideloading then. While Amazon App Store is good and has some of the most popular apps, it still represents less than a fourth of the apps you can download if you were downloading from Google Play Store.

There is a solution in the form of WSATools. It’s an utility designed from engineering student Simone Franco. It not only allows you to install any Android app, but also makes the process much easier than the usual. Without the tool, the process require multiple downloads from separate sources, a lot of tweaking, and some time in the command line.

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Sideloading Apps with WSATools

The WSATools will do most of the complicated steps in the background. After you load it up, it will automatically install the Android Debug Bridge (ADB) which is essential for sideloading apps. It will then ask what Android app you want to install. The process is seamless as installing Android apps in the Amazon App Store. Fortunately, most of the Android apps will work well even if they’re just APKs – the file extension associated with Android apps. It’s important to not that the performance when sideloading apps can’t be guaranteed.

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The first thing you need to be aware is that sideloading is an unofficial install. Therefore, not all apps will have a perfect functionality. Also, some apps are exclusively for smartphones and the experience on a PC may not be the best. Some apps won’t perform so well as they would do on native hardware. Also, all of this is experimental, so don’t expect developers to be working on fixes for apps if they don’t work properly on Windows 11.

Be careful when sideloading Android APKs. Make sure to avoid shady websites and download APKs from websites like APKMirror. It’s one of the more trustworthy options, as the site does not host any pirated or paid apps. It cross-checks unchangeable APK certificates to verify that apps are legit. Also sideloading carries risks regardless of the installation method or source of the APK.

If you’re wondering whether it’s possible or not to install Google Play Store on Windows 11, we can say it is!

How to Install Google Play Store on Windows 11

If you’re not happy with Amazon Appstore catalogue, and can’t deal with app sideloading, then installing Google Play Store is an option. Obviously, it’s not officially available and will need you to go through some steps.

Requirements for Google Play Store on Windows 11

  • To install the Google Play Store on Windows 11, first you do need the Amazon Appstore on the system. Refer to the beginning of this article to check the steps.
  • Additionally, make sure to check that your PC meets the Windows 11 requirements and install all the latest updates before starting the process.
  • Check that your Microsoft Store is updated to the latest version.
  • Check that your Windows 11 PC has hardware virtualization enabled. To do so, Go to the “Performance” tab in the Task Manager with Ctrl + Shift + Esc. If it’s not enabled, then you need to enable Intel VT-X in your computer’s UEFI firmware (BIOS).
  • Once everything is checked, you can proceed to the steps.

How to Install Google Play Store on Windows 11

  • Step 1: To download and install the Google Play Store on your Windows 11, you need a tool called “PowerShell Windows Toolbox”.
  • Step 2: To download the Google Play Store, visit the GitHub Page and download the special tool in this link.
  • Step 3: Scroll down How to Use section and then copy the code under the “Easy Start Command” option.
  • Step 4: Now, run the Windows Powershell on your PC as an Administrator. For that, go to the start menu, search the tool and then tap on “Run as Administrator”.
  • Step 5: You need to paste the earlier copied code in PowerShell and Click on Enter.
  • Step 6: Wait for a few seconds and click on the “Install Google Play Store for Windows 11” option available at the bottom of the page. This will replace the Windows Subsystem for Android with a new package. Enter “P” to go ahead.
  • Step 7: Here, you will get a new bit.ly link which you can copy-paste into your browser to download a ZIP file. Once it is downloaded, then enter the path of the file in PowerShell.
  • Step 8: Once of all it’s done, you will find the Google Play Store in the Start Menu with your other apps. Now you can sign in with your Google account in the Play Store and enjoy the downloaded apps from it in your Windows 11.

Most of the apps should work fine, but you may still find some incompatibility issues. It will be a hit or miss and you need to check which apps work or don’t work on your PC.

Conclusion

As you can see, it’s perfectly possible to run Android apps on Windows 11 PCs running the latest releases. While it was available only for insiders in the release, the support has been added to all users in the latest updates. Of Course, if your PC isn’t compatible with the Android subsystem, then the Amazon AppStore won’t appear on your PC. You may also have trouble trying to install other stores. If the subsystem isn’t compatible with your Windows 11 PC, then you will need to look for Android emulation apps.

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