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Microsoft delays tool that will bring Android apps to Windows

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Microsoft has confirmed that a tool that lets Android apps easily run on Windows 10 is "not ready," according Windows Central and other sources. The software giant introduced the Windows Bridge for Android, dubbed "Project Astoria," earlier this year as part of a larger effort to help app-builders easily convert Web, iOS and Android apps to Windows. Developers complained that it still isn't available (unlike the other apps), though Microsoft hasn't said the project is in trouble. However, the Project Astoria forums have gone dark and Microsoft removed the Android subsystem from the last Windows 10 Mobile preview, suggesting it may be killed altogether.

The Android bridge is essentially just an emulator, and has been beset with technical problems and weak app ports, according to Windows Central. On the other hand, the "Project Islandwood" tool for iOS requires that apps be reworked and recompiled before they can be imported to Windows. With the latter tool, the end result is high-quality apps that take advantage of Windows 10 features -- in fact, it's reportedly being used on the next Facebook app for Windows 10. The fact that many Android developers also build iOS apps may mean Microsoft feels the Android tool is no longer necessary. For the others, Redmond hopes that its Windows 10 universal apps, which run on both desktop and mobile versions, will convince developers to take the plunge on mobile.

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