Microsoft and Intel announced on Thursday that Intel Core-based Windows 11 systems can run apps that were developed for the Google Android platform. The move brings a variety of useful apps and immersive games to upcoming PCs. Regardless, the two companies stated that Windows 11 systems will natively support multi-monitor connectivity using Intel’s Thunderbolt 4 technology.
To bring Android apps to Windows 11, Intel developed its Intel Bridge Technology, a runtime post compiler that enables applications originally designed for various hardware platforms to run natively on x86-based devices. Intel’s bridge technology is part of the company’s XPU strategy, it is not limited to Android applications and x86 platforms, so use of the technology may expand to other areas.
It’s unclear what Microsoft means by denying the technology a name. Intel’s technology is rarely validated for AMD’s Ryzen, for example. But Microsoft also didn’t list it as an exclusive feature that requires anything beyond that Minimum specifications.
“Intel believes it is important to make this feature available for all x86 platforms and has developed Intel Bridge Technology to support all x86 platforms (including AMD platforms),” said Intel support Tom’s hardware in a statement. “However, Intel delivers platforms that deliver an optimized experience and make Windows platforms with Intel Core processors the best choice.”
The introduction of Android apps on Windows 11 mimics Apple’s native support for iOS programs on Apple Silicon-based Macs. This allows users to enjoy different types of software on the same screen. In the meantime, it will be interesting to see if Android apps will work on Windows on Arm platforms.
“The combination of Windows 11 and Intel technologies and platforms provides unmatched performance, compatibility and experience on Windows, and we’re bringing people’s favorite experiences from phone to PC with Intel Bridge technology,” said Gregory Bryant, Intel Executive Vice President and General Manager, Client Computing Group.
In addition to running Android apps, Intel Core-based PCs with Thunderbolt 4 support multi-monitor connectivity and Windows Snap technology right out of the box. The move will greatly increase the value of Thunderbolt 4 technology in general, and TB4-enabled displays in particular.
Intel said it has validated over 80 Intel Evo-certified laptop designs for Windows 11. These systems are based on the company’s 10th and 11th generation core processors.
To update: June 24, 2:27 p.m. ET – Added comment from Intel confirming AMD support.