Android emulators perform various functions giving people a great deal of substantial reasons to run them on their PC. They may help gamers to utilize a mouse or a keyboard on their games or app application developers to attempt a test on their apps before delivering it out. Perhaps you simply want it there to use it.
In recent years, the market has seen a hindered recession with our choices of the top emulators like Andy, AmiduOS and Leapdroid. They have permanently left the market but regardless, Android emulation has proved possible on PC.
To make it easier for you, we have jotted down the best Android emulators for PC. Although with these emulators, the process might require one to absorb some information as it gets a bit technical but with these simplified information, we will help you grow on the learning curve. Before we move to the best emulators available, let’s take a quick look at the main use of emulators.
Use of Emulators
We will be discussing the three most common uses of emulators.
- Emulators definitely play a huge role in the life of gamers and make some games easier to play on the PC. With emulators you do not need to worry and depend on the battery life of your devices. The macros and other tricks help the process. These tricks are not illegal in general so cannot cause problems of any kind to anyone. If you are an android user and do a lot of gaming and looking for a top-class emulator then you must choose from MeMu, KoPlayer, Bluestacks, and Nox.
- The second extensive use is for development. Developers like to test games on as many devices as possible before launch. Any android studio emulator can do this kind of work quite well. But if you want the best of the lot then, Xamarin and Genymotion are excellent choices for this type of work.
- The final main type is productivity. This is not a very common thing since Chromebooks cost less and a better choice if you have to use android apps on anything apart from a phone. Most productivity tools are cross-platform. To a fair extent, any gaming emulator can double up as a productivity emulator. But if you have a very stringent and specific use case with some knowledge then you can go for ARChon and Bliss. But for all practical purposes we recommend using Chromebook for using android apps on computers or laptops.
Top 8 Emulators for Windows and Mac systems
Android Studio’s emulator
The default development console for Android is Android Studio. This console has a plethora of tools to aid developers in making games and apps which are mainly for Android OS. To add to its benefits, Android Studio also has a built-in emulator which can be used to test your games and apps. One downside is the complicated set up which is very time consuming. So it is not considered for consumer level use, but developers can easily use this tool as an emulator to test their apps. The studio also supports Kotlin if a developer needs to try that out. Though not meant for novice and regular people, this is surely a gift for developers.
ARChon is different from traditional emulators. You install it as a Google Chrome extension after which Chrome will be able to run Android games and apps, though with limited support. Running this emulator is a little tedious. You’ll have to install the thing to Chrome and then obtain APKs to load them in too. To add salt to the injury, the APK might not be compatible so you might have to use a tool to change it. A hoard of steps are needed to make ARChon work, as compared to other Android emulators for PC. It has some good features like it is compatible with any OS which can run Chrome (that includes Mac OS, Linux, Windows, etc).
Bliss is something a little bit different. It uses virtual machines on PCs to work as an Android emulator. You could also run it through a USB stick on your desktop. If you do not have intense use cases then do not go for the boot-from-USB option since it is primarily a power user option. If you are used to making your own virtual machine, then the process of installing this is easy. But tedious otherwise for someone who has never made their own VM. Though the USB installation method is quite complicated, it allows your desktop system to execute android directly from boot. For this reason Bliss is a pretty unique emulator, if you go through all the steps till the end. Do backup your current operating system, since this will run well only if it is compatible with your system. Android Oreo is a newer version of emulator from Android and the system runs this version.
Amongst all Android emulators, Bluestacks ranks as the most mainstream one. It is because of many reasons. For one, it is compatible with both Windows and Mac. It was the first amongst Android emulators which worked as promised and is getting updated regularly even now. This emulator is especially for mobile gamers. It has earned a bad reputation of being a little bloated at times. For this reason Bluestacks 4 was launched in 2018 but was met with mixed results. For many games installed, it included key-mapping as well which helps in making things much easier. On the list provided here, this one counts as one of the heaviest emulators. But it compensates for that with more features than others. Another version of Bluestack, MSI App Player, is a pretty fabulous emulator which many feel works better than the normal Bluestacks. Either of them can be tried to see which fits your requirements.
Earlier known as Tencent Gaming Buddy, GameLoop is a popular Android emulator. You can trust this one as Tencent calls it the official emulator. Though the collection of games is not too big, however, it lets you play Call of Duty: Mobile and PUBG Mobile. We would not recommend this one for developmental testing. However, if you are looking to enjoy games for mobile FPS gaming this one can be a decent choice. We tested the emulator and though it performs quite well to our expectations. The keyboard controls are good too.
The next one on the list is for developers. You can easily test apps on many devices without owning them. The services offered by Genymotion are satisfactory for both commercial and personal use. Additionally, it is available on both your desktop computer and the cloud. This means if you do not have a good configuration PC you can make use of Genymotion’s servers.
The next on the list is LDPlayer, which is another decent Android emulator for gamers. It boasts an array of features like keyboard mapping controls, runs on older versions of Android and support for the latest games. LDPlayer receives regular updates. It supports games like PUBG Mobile, Black Desert Mobile, Clash of Clans, Brawl Stars, etc.
The last one on the list is MEmu that is popular for supporting both Intel chipset and AMD. We were impressed to see that the developers have specifically paid attention to AMD’s platform. You can run multiple instances at once for multiple games. This one is quite useful for developers as well.
While the list is definitely not complete, we agree there are many more great Android emulators out there. The ones listed were tested by us and we think one needs to pick and choose as per their requirement. Each one does great at its job. Whether you are a developer looking for an emulator to test apps or you are gamers looking to play classic games, there is one apt emulator for everyone.
Related Tags: Emulators