Even though the product isn't ready to run Windows apps on Chromebooks yet, it will shortly give Chromebooks the much-awaited ability. The application is already available as a licenced product on Linux and Mac devices and is based on the open source Wine project.
Google Play Store Apps coming to Chromebooks
Apart from Chromebooks which run on ChromeOS, CrossOver will also let other Android devices run Windows apps, provided such Chromebooks and Android devices feature Intel processors only. CodeWeavers have also put up a product named CrossOver 15 on sale which lets Mac users run Windows apps and programmes on their devices.
"TODAY, Google released Android for Intel based ChromeBooks. AND CrossOver for Android installed and ran on a Google ChromeBook. More importantly, we were able to install the Steam Client into CrossOver for Android and run LIMBO and other games. MORE IMPORTANTLY, we have DirectX 9 support, keyboard support, mouse support, and sound support TODAY!!! PEOPLE, we are staring at a Leprechaun riding on the back of a Unicorn while taking a picture of a UFO. We are running CrossOver through Android on a ChromeBook running a Windows based game launched from the Steam client. THIS HAS NEVER BEEN DONE BEFORE…EVER!!!," said CodeWeavers in a blog post.
UPDATED: Google Chrome OS NOT being merged into Android
The news comes not long after Google announced at its ongoing I/O Conference in Mountain View, California that Google Play app store will arrive on ChromeOS as early as in the first half of the year. The list of Chromebooks where the Play Store will be initially available include Google Chromebook Pixel (2015), Acer Chromebook R11 and Asus Chromebook Flip. However, Google will roll out its Play Store on all Chromebooks by the end of the year. The launch of Play Store will let you make Skype calls, download and use Android apps and play Minecraft or Clash of Clans on your Chromebook. But we aren't sure if Play Store will be launched as part of a comprehensive update to ChromeOS or if will be updated independently over the air.
"The same apps that run on phones and tablets can now run on Chromebooks without compromising their speed, simplicity or security. This is good for users and great for developers – in addition to phones and tablets, they will be able to easily bring their apps to laptops. And all this is built on top of Chrome OS, so users will continue to have everything they love in their Chromebooks," said Google in a blog post.
Google's decision to let ChromeOS users access Android apps comes not long after data from IDC revealed that shipments of Chromebooks outpaced that of Macs in the United States during the first quarter of the year. As per the IDC estimate, Apple sold 1.76 million Macs in Q1 and even though it registered a 5.6 per cent increase in sales year-on-year, it lagged behind Lenovo, HP, and Dell in terms of overall sales. As per the Verge, Dell, HP and Lenovo together sold 2 million Chromebooks in Q1, overtaking Apple in the process.