It seems the inevitable is set to happen, and that Microsoft is soon set to support Android apps on Windows 10 Mobile.
So say Paul Thurrott, and I am inclined to believe him.
He’s not too happy about the development either, noting:
The ability to run Android apps on Windows—this utter capitulation—is not a “win” or a positive development. It’s a defeat, an avoidable suicide. And it makes Windows even less important than it already was. To me. To you. To the world.
We of course do not know the details, but it is likely we will find out quite a bit at Build 2015, which starts tomorrow. Likely Android apps will run in a special environment which isolate them from the underlying Windows Phone OS, and Microsoft would have to run their own android app store as Google will of course not make their store and services available. Like Blackberry 10 users we may however be able to install alternate stores like the Amazon app store, though this will not give access to all applications. Users should still however be able to side-load apps like Snapchat if they wish, even if these are not officially supported.
How will this change Windows Phone? Well, on the good side you will finally be able to use that parking app which was never coming to Windows Phone, but on the negative end your apps may be rather ugly, but then Windows 10 Mobile is already tending towards bad Android clone, so the Android apps may look right at home.
In terms of the future for Windows Phone, Paul suggests this move will mean there is not much of any, saying:
When it comes time to upgrade, why would anyone choose a Windows Phone at that point? (A problem exacerbated by Microsoft’s focus on low-end Windows Phone handsets.) Instead, most will simply choose Android, since they are now comfortable with those apps, and for the many advantages that Android has over Windows Phone generally. This is, in another words, only a short-term fix, one that will evolve into an inevitable exodus of users.
Unless Microsoft can create a new USP for the mobile OS, it seems in many cases we would be better off buying a Samsung Galaxy S6 with Microsoft’s apps pre-installed rather than wasting our time on a buggy emulator…