Windows 11 can now launch Android apps quicker without hogging system resources

Windows 11 Android App Store Amazon
(Image credit: Future)

What you need to know

  • Microsoft recently shipped an update to the Windows Subsystem for Android to Windows Insiders.
  • The update adds support for picture-in-picture mode for Android apps.
  • The Windows Subsystem for Android now has a "Partially running" system that runs with minimal resources but allows apps to launch quicker than "As needed" mode.

Microsoft has a range of improvements on the way for the Windows Subsystem for Android (WSA). An update just made its way to all Windows Insider channels. WSA jumps to version 2303.40000.3.0 with the update and gains a couple of significant features.

Apps that use Android Picture-in-Picture will now be able to pop into that mode when running through the Windows Subsystem for Android. This should improve multitasking and make it easier to watch content while doing other tasks on a PC.

WSA also gains a "Partially running" system setting with the update, which uses fewer system resources than running continuously but can launch apps faster than having the tool set to "As needed."

Here are all of the changes, as outlined by Microsoft:

Windows Subsystem for Android: What's New

For apps that use the Android PIP feature, the subsystem now supports this behavior. With the flexibility of having apps in windowed mode and all of the great Windows resize and snap features, this makes multitasking within Android apps even easier.

  • A new “Partially running” system setting added to WSA Settings app, which runs the subsystem with minimal resources but apps launch quicker than “As needed” mode
  • Linux kernel updated to 5.15.78
  • Improvements to platform reliability
  • Android 13 security updates

The Windows Subsystem for Android adds several apps to PCs, but it has its limitations. Generally, users are expected to get apps through the Amazon Appstore. You can, however, sideload Android apps onto Windows 11. With some extra work, it's even possible to run Google Play Store Android apps on Windows 11.

If you've never used WSA, we have a guide on how to get started with Android apps on Windows 11. That piece includes setup instructions and the steps needed to install or uninstall Android apps on Windows.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at