March 19, 2018

Chromebooks gain access to Android apps


The rumors leading into Google I/O 2016 proved to be true. Chromebooks are picking up the ability to run Android apps from the Play Store. Well, some of them.

Specifically, Chromebooks with touch screens, such as the Pixel 2, Asus Chromebook Flip, and Acer Chromebook R11, will gain the new powers. Older models aren’t completely ruled out, but it’s likely that the hardware will dictate if it’s supported.

Thanks to affordable price points, Chromebooks are continually growing in popularity. They’re not only practical in school and business settings, but they are also capable of handing pretty intense demands. Gaming, which is not something you typically think of for Chromebooks, is about to change with the Android integration.

Android apps will be available in both full-screen and windowed modes so you can essentially do a picture-in-picture experience. What’s interesting to us is that many Android apps and games are able to run offline, an almost 180-degree turn from Chromebooks. Conversely, some Android apps require accelerometers, GPS, and other sensors. Suffice it to say, those sort of apps and games will not be available for Chromebooks.

Oh, and before you throw out that non-touchscreen Chromebook in favor of one with support, check this out; Google is working to deliver the Play Store to Chromebooks with standard displays, too. We’re also hoping to see Chromeboxes learn the new tricks as well.