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Native Support for Android Coming to Windows

Ars Technica reports that startup company BlueStacks is currently working on a native x86 Android runtime that will enable Android apps to run within Windows without the need for an emulator. The technology has reportedly impressed potential investors to the point that they have now dumped $7.6 million in Series A funding into the project so that the team can turn its software into a full-blown business.

Right now Android developers are forced to run Google's emulator supplied in the Android SDK so that their apps can function within the Windows environment. This isn't exactly the ideal situation, as apps can lag to the point of sheer annoyance on some systems. BlueStacks' supposedly bypasses this translation method, allowing near-native performance on the non-native x86 platform.

According to the report, the BlueStacks runtime will allow Android programs to launch from a desktop shortcut like any other Windows-based program, and run in individual windows – no reboot required. There will also be an option to run a complete, full-blown Android environment on Windows as well, including the launcher and other elements. Third-party applications won't have to be recompiled for x86, and users can even install conventional Android software from Amazon's Android Appstore and run it on Windows too.

"BlueStacks helps PC manufacturers to ride the Android momentum by enabling Android apps on x86-based tablets, netbooks, notebooks, convertibles and AiO Windows PCs," the company said. "With the new hybrid convertible form factors, BlueStacks completely eliminates the need to carry two devices. The end consumer benefits from getting both Android and Windows at the price of a single PC. "

The company also states that its Android stack will integrate "seamlessly" with Citrix and Microsoft software delivery infrastructure and with Citrix’s Enterprise App Store. "With BlueStacks, enterprise IT can deliver Android apps securely and effortlessly to any end point running Windows," BlueStacks said.

The tech made its first public demonstration this week at the Citrix Synergy conference. BlueStacks is currently establishing connections with hardware manufacturers that are interested in shipping the x86 Android runtime on consumer devices. Its first set of hardware partners and OEM customers are expected to be announced in the next few weeks, and there may even be samples shown at Computex 2011 next week.