Microsoft’s new Windows app aims to let users run Windows apps and devices on platforms from Mac to smartphones, all without having to host a local PC.
The new Windows app is partly a rebrand of the company’s long-standing Microsoft Remote Desktop, which saw a major update on the Mac in 2021. That app is still available while the Windows app is in beta testing, but Microsoft is discontinuing at least some of those apps. its features, if not the entire service.
“Windows App is your gateway to Azure Virtual Desktop, Windows 365, Microsoft Dev Box, Remote Desktop Services, and remote PCs,” Microsoft says in a new blog post, “connecting you securely to Windows devices and apps.”
“You can use Windows App on many different types of devices across different platforms and form factors, such as desktops and laptops, tablets, smartphones, and through a web browser,” it continues. “If you’re using a web browser on a desktop or laptop, you can connect without having to download and install any software.”
Currently only available for Mac via TestFlight, the Windows app requires macOS Monterey or later. iPhone and iPad require iOS 16, iPadOS 16 or later.
The Windows App is also available for use via a web browser, although Microsoft notes that it “does not support mobile web browsers.” However, it does support Safari version 11 (as of 2017) or later, plus Firefox 55, Chrome 57, or Microsoft Edge 79 or later.
This means that Windows will be able to run effectively on many devices that it does not currently support. Although that list doesn’t seem to include Android at the moment.