A few years ago it was impossible to run Android apps on a ChromeOS computer. That may sound shocking if you’ve only been using a Chromebook in the last couple of years. This is because all Chromebooks sold today come with Android app capability as standard.
This wasn’t always the case, and there is no doubt having the ability to run Android Apps on your Chromebook is a great benefit. In fact, it was one of the benefits of buying a Chromebook over an MS Windows computer. That is about to change though because Microsoft will be adding Android app capability to Windows 11.
This is great news for Android because it will increase the number of users. As they will no longer be limited to users who are using either an Android phone, tablet or Chromebook. The ability to run Android apps on Windows 11 will bring a whole new user base to Android.
Android apps on ChromeOS
Because Windows 11 users will soon have the ability to use Android apps. It’s even more important for Google to ensure ChromeOS users get a good Android app experience. After all, the fact that both ChromeOS and Android are Google products, you would expect they can offer ChromeOS users a better or just as good experience when using Android Apps.
Something you may not be aware of is that not all Chromebooks run the same Android app version. There are Chromebooks that run Android 9 whilst others run Android 11. The version your computer runs depends on the processor type. Ideally, all devices would run the same version of Android, but this is perhaps not a possibility.
The fact that ChromeOS devices are only running up to Android 11, and Microsoft are in the process of running apps on their Windows 11 OS using Android 13. It shows Google needs to catch up and get more ChromeOS computers running on Android 13. It’s simply not going to look too good if MS Windows users are using a later version of Android.
Material You around the corner for ChromeOS
At the moment the settings you access from the bottom right of your desktop look a lot different to the settings you see when using an Android phone running Android 12 or later. For some time now Android 12 on mobile has offered Material You.
Material You is all about how the settings on your device are displayed. It not only looks visually pleasing, the way you interact with settings when using Material You is a much slicker process. Material You may not yet be available, but you can take a sneak preview of Material You on ChromeOS in a video I recently uploaded to my YouTube channel.
Before Material You is released on ChromeOS it makes sense for Google to ensure Chromebooks are using Android 13 where possible. This is because ChromeOS having Material You does not mean it will also be the case for your Android apps. To get a seamless Material You experience it needs to be available for both ChromeOS and Android, and that will only be possible if your computer is running Android 13 and not Android 9 or 11.
If you’ve watched the video I created from the link above. I’m sure you will agree that Material You looks much better than how your settings currently look.
To have your Android phone and Chromebook settings both using Material You look is a great idea. It will also offer you more customisation because you’ll have more control over colour options.
Microsoft may have taken a long time to realise cloud computing is the future. However, they are now on it, and this is evident with Windows 11. Also, offering their users access to Android Apps shows they have finally woken up to what users want. It’s great for the consumer as a whole, but it does mean Google has got a lot of work to do if they want ChromeOS to be the best choice if you want to use Android apps on your computer.