Microsoft has announced it is to add the ability to mirror Android apps on Windows 10 so that PC users can do tasks that are usually done directly on a phone.
According to Microsoft, app mirroring will allow Windows 10 users to see and interact with apps they have installed on their Android phones directly on their PCs. For example, during this month’s Microsoft Fall Event, the tech giant demonstrated how a Windows 10 user could participate in a Snapchat conversation without using their phones. It showed Snapchat mirrored onto a Windows 10 PC and users could type directly into the conversation window on their PC.
Microsoft has recently rolled-out their new Windows 10 update, Windows 10 1809, and the mirror-app feature is, as yet, not available. Neither were Microsoft able to say whether all Android -phone apps will be automatically available, although some experts say this is highly likely in the near future.
Microsoft were also reticent as to when the feature would eventually become available to testers and mainstream users. But the feature seems to be a continuation of the work Microsoft has been doing with Windows 10 and the accompanying ‘Your Phone’ application.
So far, Android phone users have been able to take photos with their phone and then edit, save and share those photos from their Windows 10 PC. Phone users can also see and respond to SMS messages directly from their PC running the October update.
It seems highly unlikely at present that iPhone users will have access to the same features, given Apple’s tight control over iOS application programming interface. Currently, iPhone users can only share web pages from their phones to their PCs.
This is not the first-time app-mirroring has been attempted by Microsoft. In 2016 the company dropped its Astoria bridge technology. At the time Microsoft said it was not now necessary given the company was also offering iOS-porting technology and that most Android apps also had iOS complements.