What exactly IS an android emulator? There seem to be a lot of them these days. You may have heard of Blue Stacks, Ko Player, Andy, Droid 4x, MEmu, and so many more. Seriously, there are a ton of them. For someone who is brand new to the idea of an emulator, the whole TECHNOLOGY aspect of the topic can feel like an overwhelming turn off. Take heart, they aren’t quite as complicated as the interwebs make them out to be.
But what exactly is an android emulator? (Everyone just assumes that you know)
An android emulator is generally a software that you can install on your PC or Mac device to take advantage of programs, apps, or games that are only available to use on an android device.
When I say “android device” I mean a device that runs on an android operating system. If you aren’t techy, the android device you might be most familiar with is a smart phone that runs on an android operating system, such as a Samsung phone (not an iPhone).
If the software, app, or game, is made only for android operating systems and isn’t compatible with a desktop computer, tablet, PC, Mac, or other operating system, an emulator means that you aren’t out of luck.
An android emulator is like a bridge between the android operating system and a device that doesn’t have an android operating system. You install the android emulator on your non-android device, and it acts like a “virtual machine” inside your non-android machine. It helps your non-android machine pretend to be one, enough to translate the android app so that it can be used by you on a non-android machine.
The long and short of it is that if you utilize an android emulator, you can play games and use apps and software that could only otherwise be used on an android phone like a Samsung, for example.
What can I do with an android emulator?
With an android emulator, you can do just about anything in an android app, software, or game that an android user could do. You can install, use, and uninstall just about any android application, just like a physical android device would.
In most cases, I see people using an android emulator to take advantage of popular (and trending for a hot minute) games and apps for android users. People want to play the super cool game, but don’t want to buy any devices that run on the android operating system.
However, I also see professionals using emulators, to take advantage of popular and very useful productivity apps, such as Evernote.
An emulator can also simulate incoming phone calls and text messages, access the Google Play store, identify the location of the device (or specify it).
Another cool thing–an emulator can simulate network speeds (of all kinds)!
What are some other reasons why people would use an android emulator?
Some people don’t like playing games on their phones, They might like the larger screen, or to use a mouse to make the most of the game.
Gamers use them to play their favorite games on a desktop computer rather than on their phone, even if they have an android phone. Game play tends to take a while, and it sucks to have to rely upon the battery life of a phone, or play sitting right next to the wall with it plugged in. Further, if you are playing on your computer, you can continue to use your phone as normal for calls, texting, and surfing the web while continuing to play the game.
Others argue that the emulator (and a desktop device) is actually quicker than the top android phones, making it much easier to play at a high level.
App developers may want to use a desktop to test the new app before publishing it for download, or to make changes/updates to it. It allows them to test their applications not just on the android operating system generally, but also on specific android devices, one at a time, to troubleshoot whether the application will have bugs or troubles on specific devices.
Do android emulators cost money?
Certainly, but there are a lot of free options out there. Let’s look at Blue Stacks, for example. There is a free option, or you can pay for the premium version for a few dollars/month. This is a very popular option for people who are just getting started with emulators. It is compatible with both Windows and Mac machines, and it get updated regularly (which makes it an attractive option because many emulators are not updated often (or get abandoned) by developers.
While there are many other free options, there are also a few paid ones. If you are serious about tech, then I can’t imagine you are reading this blog post! Assuming you are reading this post to get up to speed, rest assured that a paid emulator is not required. You just have to try out a few of them to see which fit your profile and your needs.
Which is the fastest andriod emulator?
I would take what you read online about which is the best or fastest emulator with a grain of salt. I wouldn’t accept what people say. Instead, I would try out the various options and decide myself.
Why? Because a lot of the articles that you find online about the “best” or “fastest” or “top” are written by affiliate marketers who have a vested interest in telling you which android emulator is the best or the fastest. What is that vested interest? Many of these software companies pay affiliates when users install the software, even the free versions.
I’m not going to recommend just ONE emulator for you in this article, which just a very general, introductory and informative article, though I will say that in general, people rate Bluestacks, MEmu, Nox, and Remix very highly overall, and as a result, I would start there if you need some direction to get started with an android emulator.
Do you have questions about android emulators? Please let us know in the comments. We can answer them there (or someone in the community can), or we can prepare another post in response to assist you.
Thank you for reading, and feel free to check out more articles on the site.