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Chinese upstart smears Android's Ice Cream Sandwich over PCs

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A Chinese startup has successfully ported Google's Android OS to Windows, perfect for those who want an Ice Cream Sandwich-shaped box in a Windows desktop.

The application is suitably beta, with the usual caveats about crashing the host system, but the interest promptly took down the SocketeQ's sever so we're reliant on a selection of videos (hosted on China's YouTube clone YouKu) which show the OS booting, interacting and running some Android applications on top of Windows without a virtual machine in sight.

Running Android apps on Windows is nothing new. BlueStacks already does a reasonably good job of that and locks into various retailers including Google Play and Amazon's Appstore. Bluestacks' support for the more challenging video modes is patchy, and in-app purchasing is a work in progress, but it is a workable solution for those who want to run Android apps on a desktop - even if it doesn't offer the Android UI.

Given the server failure we can't tell you how stable WindowsAndroid is, though there's a decent chain on Reddit reporting variable success - even if most of the postings are discussing the server failure rather than the quality of the software it was serving.

App developers ordinarily use an Android simulator provided by Google, but that emulates handset hardware onto which various versions of the Android can be loaded instead of running the OS directly on Windows 7 or 8.

It's hard to see if that confers any particular advantage, although one can imagine better performance, but practicality has rarely been the driving force behind esoteric OS ports. SocketeQ is still down at the time of publishing. ®

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