The list of improvements extends beyond simply upgrading to Android 12L
Android apps refuse to be limited to your phone, and there’s been a big push lately to bring them to platforms like Chrome OS. This also includes traditional PCs, and after a fairly extensive Windows Insider beta test, Android apps and games have finally become widely available to Windows 11 users. didn’t stop Microsoft from working to improve the experience. Today we see the latest fruits of that effort, an updated Windows Subsystem for Android with a software advancement to Android 12.1 (aka Android 12L).
Dev Channel Windows Insiders can now access the WSA build 2204.40000.15.0. With the new software, Android apps now integrate better with Windows, letting you see which ones are using your microphone and location on the Windows taskbar (e.g. Mishaal Rahman). You’ll also see Android app prompts appear as Windows notifications for easier access, and Android apps now support advanced network features on Windows 11, allowing them to connect to other devices (such as as smart cameras or speakers) on the same network as your PC.
Microsoft has made some serious design changes to the WSA Settings app, better grouping similar settings and navigation options together for a simpler experience. It also added a diagnostic data viewer with information about all data collected by the subsystem, and disabled optional diagnostic data by default (although you can enable it if you wish). Other upgrades include support for VP8 and VP9 hardware decoding, and the presence of Chromium 100.
The camera app also gets a few improvements, including a fixed camera orientation, proper previews, and a well-rendered camera feed. Even the input devices are getting some attention – there’s better scroll wheel support, fixed on-screen keyboard focus, and a tweaked keyboard appearance.
Meanwhile, there are a few known issues with the update, such as camera instability on ARM devices, missing or broken apps, and an issue that causes apps rendered at lower resolutions to not render properly. not display correctly. If you’re using Windows 11, signed up for the Insiders Program, and aren’t too worried about these little glitches, you should be able to install the update from the Microsoft Store.
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