Android apps on Chrome (through ARC)

Google released a public beta of ARC (App Runtime for Chrome), a tool to run Android apps on Chrome.

It's a good strategy. They get a lot of more apps available on Chrome OS. And besides Chromebooks, but the apps will also run on any desktop.

I'm curious to see where this is going. Not only because of the obvious develop once, run on all platforms. But also because the Chrome Web Store (CWS) can drive a lot of traffic. For Bundlr, it drove on average 40 new users every day, for more than 3 years. And with no signs of slowing down.

So I tried ARC and got this:

Caderno on Chrome

Nice and smooth user experience. You can even keep the application on the OSX dock and open it whenever you want.

Yet, there are some issues:

  • Can't copy/paste using the usual shortcuts. You need to touch the text just like on devices.

Should be easy to fix.

  • Can't resize windows. You can just pick the window size at the start: phone, tablet or maximized.

Not so easy to fix. Androids apps aren't resized frequently. Most re-create the entire activity on screen changes.

All considered, I want to try this out a bit more. When I release the new version of Caderno, I'll publish it on the CWS and give you some feedback.