Console OS has a dream, one that Samsung and ASUS discovered to be a rather deadly one. It wants to enable fast and easy dual-booting of Windows and Android on a single PC, whether laptop or tablet, while offering the full potential of a regular Android installation. It flew to Kickstarter in search of support, which it found to some extent. Now it is announcing its first big step, making available the first Developer Release for the Android spin and taking it a rather small step closer to its ambitious goal.
Running Android or Android apps on PCs is nothing new, but Console OS markets itself as the real McCoy. Most solutions, like BlueStacks, use emulation. Android-x86 does let you install directly to the machine, but its supported features are not as exhaustive as Console OS’ wishlist. That includes the latest Android version (4.4 at the moment), OpenGL ES 3 and OpenGL 4 support, legitimate Google Play Services, and fast switching between Windows and Android.
Console OS DR 1 fulfills the most basic requirements of that goal: getting Android to install on PCs. To be exact, it installs on Intel-based computers. Those on AMD or with AMD or NVIDIA graphics chips can proceed at their own risk. But even with Intel chips its support only goes as far back as the more recent models, like Sandy Bridge for desktops and Bay Trail for Atom’s. Even WiFi works only for a limited number of network chips. It’s a very small step, but a necessary one.
The DR1 release is available for free but it does require registration. There will be a Pro version in the future that will require a yearly subscription, which is a strange arrangement as far as operating systems go. The developers plan to move up to Android 5.0 soon, probably before the first gold release for end users.