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Microsoft Considers Allowing Android Apps on WP8

By - Source: The Verge | B 43 comments

Unnamed sources are reporting that Microsoft is considering allowing Android apps to run on Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8. Sources told The Verge that some inside Microsoft actually like the idea of enabling Android apps inside both stores. After all, if BlackBerry can run Android apps, why can't Windows Phone? Others believe that such a move could kill the Windows platform altogether.

Both sides have a point. By enabling Android installs – and we're talking about Windows Phone, not Windows 8.1 – the Windows platform would get a huge boost in content, probably one of Windows Phone's biggest sore spots to date. The only drawback it seems, and this is an assumption, is that developers would be less likely to create Metro versions.

But by adding Android apps to the Windows menu, it would seem that Microsoft accepts defeat. This is a white towel that Microsoft does not need to throw into the smartphone ring at this point in time; the company has enough woes trying to fix the Windows 8 platform. What Microsoft does not need right now is to make another radical step that may push Window Phone customers to Android or… dare I say it… iOS.

What Microsoft needs right now are Android and iOS developers creating Metro apps for both Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8. Then again, if Microsoft enables Android apps on Windows Phone, the company could very well steer many Android loyalists over into Microsoft's corner. That would be interesting. Windows Phone apps and Android apps working side by side.

As Business Insider points out, Microsoft has had a rough time convincing Android and iOS developer to bring their apps to Windows "in a timely fashion." Instagram took three years, and the recently nuked Flappy Bird never made it to the platform. Getting potential customers excited about your hardware is pretty tough when the competing platforms have all the fun stuff.

Microsoft definitely has something to think about if the info from Verge's sources is true. If the company does decide to enable Android apps whether natively or through a third-party enabler, Microsoft would have a huge library on its hands. If customers are buying Windows phones to mainly use Android apps, they may be better off purchasing an Android phone instead.

Here's something The Verge says that I find quite interesting. "Android is the mobile equivalent of Windows on desktop PCs — it's everywhere. That growth shows no signs of stopping, and it represents a huge blockade for Microsoft's mobile efforts across multiple market segments."

Yes, Microsoft definitely has something to think about.

Display 43 Comments.
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Top Comments
  • 11 Hide
    Nolonar , February 15, 2014 11:30 AM
    Quote:
    I'm not sure why Windows Phone even needs to exist. Microsoft should focus on creating excellent software and services for the platforms that exist. If it wants to sell phones, just use a Skinned version of Android to begin with. It can't possibly think it's going to make any money off Windows Phone licensing fees.

    Yes, let us all remain in and focus on the past.
    Why innovate? Why create something new?

    Just focus on the things that already exist and stop progressing.


    Seriously, though:
    Guess what, friend. Microsoft was in the smartphone market even before the iPhone was even a rumor.
    I owned a Windows Mobile 2004 device. Awful thing that always crashed, but it did exist and was made by Microsoft.

    You want Microsoft to focus on the things that already exist? They're doing it already.
    Windows, Xbox, Windows Phone.

    Do you really expect them to give up on the Xbox One, just because it's currently not doing so well compared to the PS4?
    Do you really think they'd ditch Windows, if Apple ever managed to dominate the desktop/notebook market?

    Not likely, son. Not likely at all.
Other Comments
  • 0 Hide
    NightLight , February 15, 2014 9:43 AM
    that's big. Altough msft lagged behind in the software department, that gap has now been reduced. Hardware sales aren't that bad either. it's certainly not a bad feature to have imho.
  • 2 Hide
    jhansonxi , February 15, 2014 9:46 AM
    That didn't help OS/2: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OS/2#Windows_3.x_compatibility
  • 0 Hide
    Tomas650 , February 15, 2014 10:05 AM
    I'd definitely consider a windows phone if they allowed this. Content was the only thing holding them back.
  • -5 Hide
    alxianthelast , February 15, 2014 11:06 AM
    What is an Android loyalist. Get me out of here! Only using Android because they have apps not hardware.
  • 11 Hide
    Nolonar , February 15, 2014 11:30 AM
    Quote:
    I'm not sure why Windows Phone even needs to exist. Microsoft should focus on creating excellent software and services for the platforms that exist. If it wants to sell phones, just use a Skinned version of Android to begin with. It can't possibly think it's going to make any money off Windows Phone licensing fees.

    Yes, let us all remain in and focus on the past.
    Why innovate? Why create something new?

    Just focus on the things that already exist and stop progressing.


    Seriously, though:
    Guess what, friend. Microsoft was in the smartphone market even before the iPhone was even a rumor.
    I owned a Windows Mobile 2004 device. Awful thing that always crashed, but it did exist and was made by Microsoft.

    You want Microsoft to focus on the things that already exist? They're doing it already.
    Windows, Xbox, Windows Phone.

    Do you really expect them to give up on the Xbox One, just because it's currently not doing so well compared to the PS4?
    Do you really think they'd ditch Windows, if Apple ever managed to dominate the desktop/notebook market?

    Not likely, son. Not likely at all.
  • 5 Hide
    Blazer1985 , February 15, 2014 1:16 PM
    Lumias had some great selling point for me (european user). If you travel a lot and can't use data services abroad, offline maps and translator are a must. Plus it has a nice interface although user experience REALLY needs to be refined in some cases.
  • 0 Hide
    bmacsys , February 15, 2014 1:18 PM
    This worked out great for BBM 10 too. LMFAO! Why write native Windows phone apps then? Its a huge admission of failure. 4+ years and Windows phone has went nowhere in the USA or Europe. The one hope they have is if the didn't charge licensing fees like Android. That would possibly jump start things.
  • 0 Hide
    bmacsys , February 15, 2014 1:20 PM
    I meant BlackBerry 10. Not BBM 10.
  • -5 Hide
    tcb1005 , February 15, 2014 1:25 PM
    I hope they don't allow the thousands of malware-filled applications from android onto Windows Phone.
  • -4 Hide
    JD88 , February 15, 2014 1:28 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    I'm not sure why Windows Phone even needs to exist. Microsoft should focus on creating excellent software and services for the platforms that exist. If it wants to sell phones, just use a Skinned version of Android to begin with. It can't possibly think it's going to make any money off Windows Phone licensing fees.

    Yes, let us all remain in and focus on the past.
    Why innovate? Why create something new?

    Just focus on the things that already exist and stop progressing.


    Seriously, though:
    Guess what, friend. Microsoft was in the smartphone market even before the iPhone was even a rumor.
    I owned a Windows Mobile 2004 device. Awful thing that always crashed, but it did exist and was made by Microsoft.

    You want Microsoft to focus on the things that already exist? They're doing it already.
    Windows, Xbox, Windows Phone.

    Do you really expect them to give up on the Xbox One, just because it's currently not doing so well compared to the PS4?
    Do you really think they'd ditch Windows, if Apple ever managed to dominate the desktop/notebook market?

    Not likely, son. Not likely at all.


    Actually, they will more than likely sell Xbox in the near future. Also, despite the fact that you owned a Windows mobile device in 2004, they still only have less than 3% market share 10 years later. Sounds like a fail.

    The problem is that Windows phone doesn't innovate anything. It offers no improvement whatsoever over current offerings. The future is in open source operating systems with cloud based applications, not more proprietary garbage that exists just to exist.
  • -1 Hide
    tcb1005 , February 15, 2014 1:36 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    Quote:
    I'm not sure why Windows Phone even needs to exist. Microsoft should focus on creating excellent software and services for the platforms that exist. If it wants to sell phones, just use a Skinned version of Android to begin with. It can't possibly think it's going to make any money off Windows Phone licensing fees.

    Yes, let us all remain in and focus on the past.
    Why innovate? Why create something new?

    Just focus on the things that already exist and stop progressing.


    Seriously, though:
    Guess what, friend. Microsoft was in the smartphone market even before the iPhone was even a rumor.
    I owned a Windows Mobile 2004 device. Awful thing that always crashed, but it did exist and was made by Microsoft.

    You want Microsoft to focus on the things that already exist? They're doing it already.
    Windows, Xbox, Windows Phone.

    Do you really expect them to give up on the Xbox One, just because it's currently not doing so well compared to the PS4?
    Do you really think they'd ditch Windows, if Apple ever managed to dominate the desktop/notebook market?

    Not likely, son. Not likely at all.


    Actually, they will more than likely sell Xbox in the near future. Also, despite the fact that you owned a Windows mobile device in 2004, they still only have less than 3% market share 10 years later. Sounds like a fail.

    The problem is that Windows phone doesn't innovate anything. It offers no improvement whatsoever over current offerings. The future is in open source operating systems with cloud based applications, not more proprietary garbage that exists just to exist.


    I think they will eventually spin off or sell Xbox, Surface, and the Bing divisions to please investors. Microsoft is a software company, and many investors want to see it without a cluttered brand portfolio.
  • 2 Hide
    MTWSD , February 15, 2014 1:38 PM
    I rather like this idea but only to a point. What I think should be done is an easier way to port Android apps to WP. Perhaps enable the android apps to run natively, but require they package it in a metro interface and tile so it still fits into the WP environment while simultaneously lowering the walls devs must climb to port their apps. I think that would be a good middle ground and make devs more likely to post apps. Once they see a desire for their apps on WP then they would take the time to make it more and more native.
  • 1 Hide
    qlum , February 15, 2014 1:48 PM
    The problem with supporting android apps is that they will never work perfectly, they will always be made for android, running android apps worse and not getting any of your own apps will probably not be the best for your platform. Blackbery has its own exclusive apps and can sell you there but windows phone really doesn't. I don't think they can win it on interface and nokia alone, not when there are launchers that allow similarly great interfaces on android and other great looking phones.
  • 7 Hide
    jimmysmitty , February 15, 2014 1:49 PM
    Quote:
    that's big. Altough msft lagged behind in the software department, that gap has now been reduced. Hardware sales aren't that bad either. it's certainly not a bad feature to have imho.


    I think in terms of a phone OS, MS has a better one than Android. A friend went from a Droid Razer Max HD to a WP8 and he said it is much smoother and faster. It might be a bit better CPU but it is still a dual core with 1GB RAM.

    I think MS doing this might be a mistake as they need to define their own system.
  • 0 Hide
    ethanolson , February 15, 2014 2:32 PM
    WP8 has been far more responsive and battery thrifty compared to Android. I think if they had a better policed storefront then things would be awesome.I think they should have a compiler that would take Android apps and recompile them. That way you have maximum performance and security. Also, you could have a better policed storefront. That's something that Android and WP both need.
  • 0 Hide
    XGrabMyY , February 15, 2014 4:02 PM
    I'd be ok with this, provided that Android native apps get put in a segregated section of the marketplace so users can avoid them if they choose. And so native Windows Phone apps get the spotlight.
  • -6 Hide
    czar1020 , February 15, 2014 4:15 PM
    Im in the 1% that got stuff with a windows phone for work... Please for the love of god give me decent apps
  • -6 Hide
    czar1020 , February 15, 2014 4:29 PM
    Im in the 1% that got stuff with a windows phone for work... Please for the love of god give me decent apps
  • 6 Hide
    Innocent_Bystander , February 15, 2014 5:40 PM
    I switched to Windows from Android... I never really missed anything App wise, but then again, I'm not a teenager anymore and I have a computer for running applications and I mostly use my phone for communications.On the other hand, WP is a breath of fresh air compared to the "free" apps you get on Android... I like the try/buy approach a lot better than the ad supported wild west that (I am convinced) is killing Android.
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