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Microsoft’s Windows OS gets Android games and new Task Manager

If you have ever wished to play the games on your Android phone on your Windows PC, your time has come as Google has launched its Google Play Games beta on the OS. Also, Windows is getting a redesigned Task Manager, the time in a long time that Microsoft is touching that part of the OS.

Google has thrown open the public beta of its Google Play Games on Windows. The program is limited, with only users in Hong Kong, South Korea, and Taiwan allowed to join. With this beta, you can play mobile games like Mobile Legends and State of Survival.

The beta program requires a sign-up to take part, after which you will experience “seamless gameplay sessions between a phone, tablet, Chromebook, and Windows PC.”

Arjun Dayal, the product manager for Google Play Games, enthused, “Players can easily browse, download, and play their favorite mobile games on their PCs while taking advantage of larger screens with mouse and keyboard inputs. No more losing your progress or achievements when switching between devices; it just works with your Google Play Games profile!”

While playing on the PC, you can earn Play Points just like on mobile devices.

Google has not revealed the technology behind playing Android games on Windows, but we have learned that the app for launching the games is native to Windows. It doesn’t involve streaming, separating it from another product, Google Stadia.

For developers to keep up, Google has opened a website, suggesting it might require some inputs from them for the games to work.

This new way to access Android games was announced last month but came months after Microsoft itself started test-running Android apps right inside Windows. The software company built an Android sub-system into the latest version of the OS and allowed users to install apps and games from several sources. Amazon is making its app store available but is significantly limited compared to the Google-controlled Play Store. However, despite bringing its games to the most popular desktop OS, Google has not committed to bringing its store.

Meanwhile, Microsoft is about to readying a new Task Manager for its operating system. The upcoming update will bring that part of the OS in line with the design team of Windows 11. The new design apparently exists in the recent OS builds in testing but is hidden. However, Gustave Monce, an engineering student who enjoyed fame for porting Windows 11 to a phone, unearthed it.

The new Task Manager is a work in progress and is included only in the latest builds. It has a dark interface like the rest of the OS, including rounded corners, pastel shades, and a simplified look. Instead of the tabs Windows users are used to, a sidebar takes you to different parts of the app.

However, the manager is still unusable due to many bugs. Monce says, “This is a hidden feature in the new build. Everything is broken, though.”

The first Task Manager shipped with Windows NT 4.0 and let users force close apps, monitor system performance, and more. The last significant update to it was on Windows 8, about ten years ago.

Microsoft has been steadily redesigning the parts of Windows carried over from previous major versions. The company is testing a new Media Player and has added dark mode to the iconic Notepad app. Even the Paint app that spiced up the childhood of many older Windows users has been redesigned.

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