Until the day comes when we have a single computing device to rule them all, we will most likely bounce between our phone and at least one computer to get things done, be it for work or even for play. As if multitasking between programs on a desktop or laptop weren’t enough of a distraction, having to juggle our attention between these two devices as well. Microsoft’s solution is to actually have those phone apps directly accessible on Windows but only if you’re using certain Samsung Galaxy phones.
The partnership between Microsoft and Samsung is, so far, a cozy and exclusive one. More than just having some Microsoft apps preloaded on flagship Galaxy phones, Samsung’s premium handsets also enjoy special Your Phone integration features that no other Android phone can experience, at least not yet. That special treatment now expands a bit more while also limiting its scope to even fewer phones.
Microsoft’s Your Phone app for Windows 10 already supports streaming either the phone’s entire screen on the desktop or, in the case of select Galaxy phones, streaming a single app. With the launch of the Galaxy Note 20 last year, the two companies revealed that it would soon be possible to actually have multiple Android apps running simultaneously as if they were normal Windows apps themselves. That feature is finally rolling out to the public, but there are a few requirements you’ll need to keep in mind.
On Windows’ side, your PC must be running at least the May 2020 update, preferably later, and 8GB of RAM minimum. The more important requirement, however, is that this feature is available only for phones running Android 11, which reduces that list to the Galaxy Note 10 series, the Galaxy S20 series including the Galaxy S20 FE, the Galaxy Fold, the Galaxy Z Flip, the Galaxy Z Fold 2, and, of course, the Galaxy Note 20 series.
That pretty much limits the reach of this otherwise useful feature, though hopefully, that won’t be the case for long. There are, of course, other third-party solutions but this Your Phone feature’s advantage is that it has deeper integration on both sides of the line.