How to run Android Apps in Linux OS

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Sometimes you wish that you can play you favorite games or run essential apps on your Linux along with your Android phone. It is easily possible for Windows or Macintosh operating system users through Bluestack emulator. However, as of now, Bluestacks is not available for Linux. Though, still you can run play you favorite games or run essential apps on Linux based desktop. What you need is an Android Emulator to run Android apps on Linux OS.

Before process further, let me inform you that you can not run all Android apps or games on Linux OS. The reason is some apps required different kind of functionality that may not present on your machine.

Without going into the further intro, let’s dive into the process of running Android apps on Linux OS.

1) Install Chrome Developer Channel

To make the process go work, you will need to run the Chrome Developer Channel on your Linux OS. It is one of the easiest methods because you do not need to download any extra heavy software besides your Chrome browser. If you do not install Chrome Developer Channel on your system already, you can easily download and install it like ABC. Let’s walk through that quick process.

i) Go to “The Chromium Projects” powered by Google. (http://www.chromium.org/getting-involved/dev-channel)
ii) From the page, select and download the installer associated with your operating system.
iii) Click Accept and Install the package.
iv) When next screen prompted, choose Open with “/usr/bin/software-center” (default) and click OK.
v) Next, click Install when the Software Center prompt.
vi) Enter your Sudo password when asking at next screen.
vii) Finally allow the installation to finish.

Now you will find an entry for Google Chrome (unstable) in your system.

2) Installing ARChon Runtime for Chrome

The application that will do the actual work for this task is called ARChon. This is an Android runtime, designed to works with the desktop version of Chrome. This stage of the process is also very simple.

i) Download the ARChon runtime for your system (https://archon-runtime.github.io/)
ii) Navigate to the file download location.
iii) Right-click on the zip file and extract there.
iv) Rename the folder to archon.
v) Move the folder to your home directory. (Right-click on archon > select Move To > select Home > click Select)

3) Adding ARChon Runtime to Chrome

It is time to run those Android apps on your Linux system. To perform that you have to add the runtime on your Chrome browser. This phase of the process is also very simple as usual.

i) Open the Chrome browser.
ii) Open the Overflow Menu. (three horizontal bars next to the address bar in the top right corner)
iii) Select More tools > Extensions
iv) Click on the Developer mode to enable it.
v) Click Load unpacked extension from the header.
vi) Navigate to your home directory
vii) Select archon
viii) Click Open and done.

Now, ARChon should appear in your Chrome extensions list.

run android apps in linux

4) Installing the APK

You are ready to install the app now. This installation can be performed in the same way as was ARChon. Here is the process:

i) Open your file manager
ii) Navigate to APK file location
iii) Right-click on the APK zip file and select Extract here.
iv) Open Chrome browser
v) Click the Overflow Menu
vi) Click More Tools > Extensions
vii) Click Load unpacked extension
vii) Navigate to the newly extracted APK folder.
viii) Click Open and done.

Now, you can run the app on your Linux system (if the app is supported on the desktop version of Chrome). To run the app open the Chrome browser and check the upper left corner labeled as Apps. Open it, and you will see the newly installed app is ready to run there. Click on the app and start to enjoy your favorite time on big screen.

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