An android emulator will let you run android apps & games on your PC.
What is an android emulator for PC?
If you’re not up to speed about exactly what these are used for, it’s a software program that runs on your PC using virtualization technology. Once installed, an android emulator program will allow you to run the Android OS, and therefore Android apps/games on your Windows PC and Mac computers.
The number of Android emulators available for PC has grown. So what is the point of using an Android emulator? There are several reasons why people might want to run Android apps on a PC. For example, developers might use an emulator on their PCs to test apps they are currently working on, while others might want to play Android games that aren’t available for PC. Alternatively, some may enjoy the experience of playing a favorite game on a larger screen, want to use a mouse and keyboard approach to gaming, or want to run communication apps such as Snapchat, Viber, Whatsapp, and more on a desktop. Others might choose an emulator to check out different Android operating systems to see which they prefer before deciding what to use on their mobile device. Using an Android emulator also means that even users without an Android smartphone can download apps from the Google Play Store to their PCs.
What are the Best Android Emulator For PC/Laptop?
We’ve done the legwork for you and rounded up some of the best Android emulators for PC that are worth checking out.
LDPlayer is a newer android emulator but quickly become one of the mainstream applications to run android apps on computer. It is basically an emulator for gamers, running newer OS, and offers gamer-oriented features such as keyboard mapping controls, multi-instance, macros, high FPS, and graphical support. The best thing is it gets frequent updates and supports most modern android games that require high specs. LDPlayer also has various performance optimizations. For example, users can pull off the auto headshot in Free Fire that becomes a growing favorite among players. Overall, it’s an excellent free android gaming emulator.
Bluestacks is one of the best-known Android emulators for PC. BlueStacks was among the first in this field and is still a solid and stable choice with one-click installation, although it can be resource-intensive. The Google Play Store comes pre-installed, and BlueStacks has some handy features. For instance, it supports multitasking as well as seamless integration with peripherals. It also includes key-mapping and custom settings for many games. Additionally, users can stream to Facebook Live via BlueStacks TV and can also live stream to Twitch. The number of ads can be annoying, but upgrading to a paid premium version will avoid this and offer additional support.
NoxPlayer is another popular android emulator that is particularly aimed at playing mobile games on PCs and works very smoothly. Like BlueStacks, Nox is speedy but less so with power-hungry games, and Nox enables users to change the allocation of processor cores, the amount of RAM, and more. It also allows users to assign different functions to keys or simulate gesture controls with the keyboard or joystick, has actual Bluetooth controller support, and more. Apps can be installed through APKs or from the Google Play Store, and further features include one-click root hide and unhide and inbuilt GPS controller setting. Unlike many Android emulators, it’s totally free with no ads, so it’s got to be in our best Android emulator for PC choice.
The lightweight MEmu emulator is compatible with most popular games but might best suit those focusing on productivity. It supports multiple Android Kernels, Jelly Bean, KitKat, and Lollipop, Marshmallow, Nougat and has full compatibility with hardware configurations including Nvidia, Intel, and AMD chips. It can co-exist with other Android emulators, supporting multiple instances, and is pre-installed with the Google Play Store. It supports full-screen mode, keyboard mapping, a screenshot tool, kill process tool, and enables users to record touch-screen actions and replay at any time with an operational screen recorder tool.
Andy dubs itself “your desktop mobile” and offers a full Android experience such as launchers, games, and communications apps, and users can also install root access. It has an appealing interface, and recent changes have led to improved navigation and mouse responsiveness. It doesn’t quite have all of the bells and whistles of some other Android emulators for PC, but it’s a pretty solid offering, although some users report glitches in getting Andy to work properly.
Genymotion is targeted at developers rather than casual users, which is worth bearing in mind, although consumers get to use it for free. It’s an excellent Android tool to install and enables access from Android 4.4 Kitkat right through to the latest version of Android OS. Users can also select a particular Android phone or tablet to simulate local virtual devices out of 40 devices, with more than 3,000 configurations available. It supports Open GL and hardware acceleration and is built on the X86 Architecture, offering faster speed.
GenyMotion is compatible with Android SDK tools, Android Studio, and Eclipse, and websites can be tested in various Android browsers, including Firefox for Android and Webkit for Android. It supports the laptop webcam as a video source for an Android camera, testing apps with various battery levels, and geolocation-based app testing. A full premium version adds extras such as unlimited screencasts and much more.
GameLoop is primarily for use as a mobile gaming platform on PC. It let you play some of the popular smartphone games like Call of Duty: Mobile and PUBG Mobile, and more developer are considering it as the official emulator for their COD games. GameLoop is a decent option for running android games; however, it might not be the best option for regular apps for productivity.
Android Studio is the official android console for development purposes. It offers all the essential tools to develop, test, and debug apps with a built-in emulator. It’s a bit complicated to set up and use for regular users. However, if you are starting to learn android development, then the process worth every minute as it is necessary for testing apps.
LeapDroid may not seem an obvious choice considering it has now been discontinued and will no longer be updated or supported. However, it’s still available to download from some sources and has enough about it to make it onto our list, such as less impact on system resources. It has a nice clean interface and is particularly good for those whose focus is gaming, and has fast booting times and shortcuts to popular game titles. It supports the Google Play Store, or users can directly install APKs from the PC, and features include a screenshot tool, options for OpenGL or DirectX, keyboard mapping, and the ability to set gesture controls.
KO PLAYER is built on X86 Architecture and works well most of the time, although it can be buggy to the odd occasion. It’s a newer addition on the Android emulator scene with Google Play Store by default, support for most of the keyboard, mouse, and trackpad peripherals (either wired or wireless), and support for both AMD and Intel platforms. Users can record straight from the Android emulation screen and save as video, run multiple accounts, and install apps by dragging and dropping, and thanks to HD resolution, the display is still crisp on larger screens.
PrimeOS is a relatively new option that offers a complete android desktop experience Mac OS or Windows, similar to what we’ve seen from the Samsung Desk feature. It also supports dual boot so you can natively run an Android Emulator on your system. It gives you complete freedom to both worlds.
Bliss OS android emulator for PC that runs via a virtual machine or directly from a USB stick. The boot-from-USB option is to make a portable option to carry an OS available to use anytime, anywhere. It’s an Open Source OS, based on Android with lots of optimizations, features to run almost any android tablet released in recent years. Users can choose the Tablet UI or Desktop UI. However, the USB machine might not run as efficiently as other full-featured emulators, plus the USB installation method is complicated. Bliss a super unique emulator, which felt tedious at the beginning, but you can always find help on its XDA-Developers thread here.
ArChon is Google’s official App Runtime for Chrome package that lets you run any Android app indie Chrome web browser on the desktop. It is basically a Google Chrome extension where you can load android apk files and run the. It’s a good option for developers who want to test their chrome apps on a small scale quickly.
YouWave is a Windows-based Free Android emulator. It has been developed over time and is simple enough to install and works well, but it isn’t an all-singing, all-dancing Android emulator for PC like some. However, you can’t knock it for basic gaming purposes, and it doesn’t require high-end system configuration so that it will suit some better than others.
Phoenix OS calls itself the most advanced Android game emulator for PC, offering a gaming toolkit that should provide everything you’re looking for with simple installation. It does bring an immersive Android gaming experience to your PC, and a nice addition to this one is the ability to play multiple games simultaneously on one screen. Neatly, users can also have an open chat app adjacent to talk to opponents at the same time.
A variety of Android emulators for PCs running Windows 7, 8, 8.1, and 10 are available, although sometimes the process can be a little complicated, and some work better than others. These are all free to download, but some require additional payments for extra features or to remove ads. As all of the above android emulators are free to download, check out several before deciding which fits your needs best. As well as enjoying gaming or testing apps on your PC, downloading and installing an Android emulator will enable you to make free voice calls from apps not available for your PC or use your computer keyboard to send text messages via Android apps, so there are plenty of reasons for using one. Let us know which of our best Android emulator for PC downloads is your top pick.