Wine may develop Windows compatibility layer for Android
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Fans of the open-source compatibility software Wine may soon be able to add Android to the list of compatible operating systems. The development team behind Wine, which allows Windows programs to be run on top of alternate operating systems like Linux and Mac OS X, are working with software engineers at CodeWeaver to port over code from their CrossOver software suite. CrossOver works similarly to Wine in that it allows users to run Windows software natively on Linux, Mac OS X, or Android.
CodeWeaver has already showcased Chromebooks running Windows software. The Chromebooks they used were compatible with Android apps, and the Windows programs were being run in CrossOver for Android. Wine hopes to integrate this ability into their own software but allow the compatibility layer to remain open-source and free.
There are some caveats, primarily that devices running CrossOver must have an Intel-based processor. However, there are lots of Android-ready Chromebook models sporting Intel processors. As such, this development could be a boon for Chromebooks. In addition to running Chrome OS and Android apps, Chromebooks can also run some Linux desktop distros (with some work in the Crouton shell); adding Windows software to the mix would make the affordable devices much more appealing to consumers.
While the Wine team was hoping to release the feature in Wine 2.0 (due within the coming months), they were unable to prepare it in time. Due to the annual update scheme for Wine, we will hopefully see this ability sometime at the end of 2017 or beginning of 2018.
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