Users of Chrome OS may soon be able to run virtually any Android app directly from their Chromebook. This revelation came from numerous users of the Developer Channel version of Chrome OS, specifically version 51.
This discovery involves an option that quickly appears, then vanishes, when you load the OS’ settings menu. This option states enabling it will “Enable Android Apps to run on Your Chromebook."
A deeper dive into the source code indicates that users could soon access “millions” of apps directly from the Android App Store.
This isn’t the first time we’ve heard about Android Apps running on Chrome OS. A test was run by Google in 2014 with a limited number of key apps. The project, which was called App Runtime for Chrome (ARC), was a collaborate effort between Google and a handful of app creators such as Evernote.
So, what does this mean for Chrome OS users? It means that there is a good chance that Google is at least testing the idea of bringing full Android App support to Chromebooks. An official announcement could come as early as May 18-20 during Google’s annual Google I/O conference.
It’s important to note that the developer channel is a place where Google tests new features, and not all of these changes make their way to the primary build. It’s also possible that this discovery was the byproduct of a cancelled project that wasn’t intended to be a part of any released snapshots.