6 Best Android Emulators For PC And Mac
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Run Android Apps On PC And Mac

Are you looking for the best Android emulator for your PC and Mac? There are several Android emulators available for PC and Mac with each offering its own set of unique features. Because of the wide variety of options, a lot of PC and Mac owners are looking for the best one to install on their devices. In this article, we have compiled a list of the 6 best Android emulators for PC and Mac that you can pick from and install on your device.

The use of Android emulators has grown over the years as the Android ecosystem itself keeps growing. With an Android emulator, you can run and play any Android app or game on your PC. Although most of the Android emulators available online are primarily aimed at bringing a mobile gaming experience to the PC platform, there are several other uses for an Android emulator which we will be talking about in a bit.

Let’s say you’re playing a mobile game, you get an immersive experience playing on your PC. You will also get access to a mouse and keyboard which gives you a more seamless gaming experience. Also, you no longer have to worry about your smartphones battery life. It is also worth mentioning that there are some Android apps that just don’t have a comparable experience on the PC. So with this, you can run just any Android app that you want on your PC or Mac.

Why You Need an Android Emulator?

  • Enhance graphics: Aside from the wide adopting for gaming, Android emulators can also gives you a better graphics when running Android apps on PC or Mac. However, the quality of graphics also depends on whether you have a very good graphics on your PC or Mac. This is mostly useful for gamers.
  • App testing: App developers can easily test their app on an emulators instead transferring the app on to an Android device for testing.
  • Second device: Lastly, an emulator can also serve as a ‘second mobile device‘ since you can do more than 90% of the things you do on your smartphone with an emulator.

List Of Best Android Emulators For PC

While there are many emulators for development purposes only, in this article, we won’t be considering any of those, we will be focusing on Android emulators for running Android apps (games) on PC and Mac. Let’s check them out.

BlueStacks

Bluestacks emulator | Best Android Emulators For PC And Mac

BlueStacks is one of the most well-known and most used Android emulators for PC and Mac. It is owned by a California-based company and investors include Intel AMD and also Samsung. With those investors, you can be assured that this app is going to be a safe experience to install on your PC. One of the interesting things about BlueStacks is that you can install just about any Android app you want and you have full access to the Google Play store.

Within BlueStacks you can configure your game controllers, you can also write macros. With macros, let’s say you’re playing an FPS game, you can configure some actions, say you want to jump three times and then you want to throw a grenade. You can program all that. So, all you have to do is press one button and that will kick off your scripts.

BlueStacks also allows you to install APKs, so, you don’t have to redownload an app you already have on your smartphone to run it on your PC. There is also a built-in screen recorder and screenshot feature if you like to capture your gameplay as well as create multiple instances of BlueStacks. Multiple instances allow you to run two or more apps or games at the same time.

You can also tweak BlueStacks performance to your preference, you can decide how much system resources you want to share with the software to get a better user experience. BlueStacks runs on all major platforms like Windows, macOS and Linux.

One of the downsides of using BlueStacks is that it runs an older version of Android Android 7 Nougat and the current version of Android is Android 12. But this is something common amongst all Android emulators. BlueStacks is completely free, however, you will find ads and promoted content across the experience.

Bluestacks also now lets you run some games on the cloud without using their new streaming service called Bluestacks X. The library is still pretty scanty but you can rest assured that more games will be added to this service.

Read also: Download Dolphin Emulator – Play Gamecube And Wii Games on Windows

BlueStacks is resource-intensive and may not run well on low specs PC. So, if you want to try BlueStackcs make sure your PC meets the minimum requirements.

BlueStacks Minimum System Requirments:

  • OS: Windows 7, macOS 10.12 (Sierra), Linux (64bit)
  • Processor: Intel or AMD Dual Core Processor 
  • Virtualisation  (VT-x/AMD-V): should be enabled
  • Graphics: Intel HD 5200 or higher, OpenGL 2.1
  • Memory: 4GB
  • Storage: 8 GB of available disk space

Gameloop

Gameloop emulator

Gameloop is another popular Android emulator for PC. It is developed by a company called Tencent and that is one of the largest technology companies based out of China. This emulator is primarily intended for gaining, in fact, the company Tencent is the developer of the popular Call of Duty mobile and PUBG. The company says gameloop is the official emulator for these games. So, if you’re a gamer, this is an emulator that is worth trying.

With gameloop, you have all the standard controls, you have key mapping so you can customise your controls and you can also install APK so you can install any app that you want, however, gameloop does not come with the Google Play Store pre-installed unlike Bluestacks, so it’s not quite as easy to get any app that you want.

Also, gameloop does not have multiple instances features. While that may be good for most users, you can simply play one game at a time, but that is a feature that other emulators offer.

Gameloop Minimum System Requirements

  • OS: Windows 7, Windows 8.1, Windows 10 (64bit versions required)
  • Processor: Intel Core i3 560 @ 3.3 GHz or AMD Phenom II X4 945 @ 3.0 GHz
  • Memory: 3 GB RAM
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460 or AMD Radeon HD 5870 (DirectX-11 compliant with 1GB of VRAM)
  • DirectX: Version 9.0c
  • Storage: 1GB of free storage

Nox player

Nox player emulator

Nox player is one of the best free Android emulators for PC. It is actually pretty similar to bluestacks, most apps are compatible and you have access to the Play Store, so you can install just about any app or game on it. You also get other key features like key mapping and the ability to install APKs.

NOX player comes with a unique feature that lets you can drag and drop files from your PC into the emulator. So let’s say you want to customise your background, you can do that. With Nox player, you can also run multiple instances, so, once again, if you want to play two games or if you want to have a productivity app and a game running side by side, you can do that. You can also record your screen and take screenshots.

Read also: Now You Can Install Android 10 OS On PC | Latest Bliss OS

One of the things I like the most is the clean minimalistic look, you have the most used buttons over on the right-hand side. At the very bottom, you have an ellipsis and that exposes even more controls. All in all, though, when you compare it to bluestacks, they have pretty similar functionality. So what’s not to like about Nox player? Well, once again, just like with the other emulators, the Nox player runs Android 7 Nougat and is also free.

Because it is free, you also find different ads in the emulator and they have promoted apps throughout the experience. Nox Player is available for Windows and macOS PCs.

Nox player Minimum System Requirements

  • OS: WinXP SP3 / Win7 / Win8 / Win10 (Not recommended to run on Server/Enterprise)
  • Processor: 2 cores x86/x86_64 Processor (Intel or AMD CPU)
  • Graphics: Latest Windows DirectX 11 / Graphics driver with OpenGL 2.0
  • Hardware Virtualization Technology (Intel VT-x/AMD-V): shall be enabled in BIOS
  • RAM: 2GB of RAM (4GB for x64 system)
  • Storage: 5GB of hard disk free space

Memu Play

Memu Player emulator

Memu play shares a lot of similarities with the other emulators we have mentioned, like gameloop, it is a gaming-focused emulator and has features like key mapping, multi-instances and macros. It has a neat UI but also displays ads and promoted apps, the ads, however, are not intrusive so you won’t need to worry.

Memu play comes with Play Store pre-installed and you can also install APKs. The emulator is currently only available on the PC platform but you can still run it on macOS using parallels desktops.

Memu play Minimum System Requirements:

  • OS: WinXP SP3 / Win7 / Win8 / Win10 (Not recommended to run on Server/Enterprise)
  • Processor: 2 cores x86/x86_64 Processor (Intel or AMD CPU)
  • Graphics: Latest Windows DirectX 11 / Graphics driver with OpenGL 2.0
  • Hardware Virtualization Technology (Intel VT-x/AMD-V): shall be enabled in BIOS
  • RAM: 2GB of RAM (4GB for x64 system)
  • Storage: 5GB of hard disk free space

MuMu Player

MuMu player emulator

MuMu player is developed by a company called NetEase. They’re a big developer of Android games. And it turns out that they’re listed on NASDAQ. It’s a company worth billions of dollars, and they’re based out of China. Given the size of the company, you can be assured that this is also going to be a safe emulator to install on your PC.

The emulator has a lot of the same functionality as what you’ll find in bluestacks and also Nox. You can install just about any app or game through the Google Play store. You can customise your keys, you could record your screen, you can install APKs it has all that same functionality. One of the unique things about the emulator is that when you open an app or game, it will open up a new tab across the top. And that makes it really easy to jump back and forth between the different experiences.

Being a big gaming company based out of China, the company do push a lot of their own titles within the experience and you can’t run multiple app instances. So as long as you’re just okay playing one game or running one productivity app at a time, that’s all you’ll be able to do. MuMu player is a lightweight Android emulator and is only available on the Windows platform.

MuMu plaer Minimum System Requirements:

  • OS: Windows 7 or higher with DirectX 11.0 or OpenGL 4.x
  • CPU: Intel(R) Core(TM) i3-2100 or better, a minimum of quad-core processor configuration, supports VT.
  • Graphics card (min. requirements for smooth performance): GTX 280 or HD 6790
  • RAM: 4G or more
  • Storage: At least 2G of free space on installation disk; at least 1.5G of free space in the system disk

LD player

LD player emulator

LD player is another popular emulator developed by a Chinese company. It is a lightweight Android emulator for PC and great for low-end PCs. With this one, it has a lot of the same functionality as what we’ve seen in some of the other emulators. You have access to Keymapping you could write macros, you can install APKs, you could even run multiple instances with this emulator. It’s pretty much similar to the others that we’ve discussed.

So what are the downsides? Well, once again, it’s a free experience. So there has to be some trade-off. Here when you install the LD player, they ask you if you want to install McAfee or Norton, and they try to sideload other apps, but as long as you uncheck the box install during setup those apps won’t get installed, and you’ll only get the emulator. But that’s how they try to monetize the use of the app.

You’ll also see different ads and promoted apps across the experience. But then again, it’s a free emulator and can only be installed on a Windows PC. Well, that covers our list of the six best free Android emulators for PC.

LD player Minimum System Requirements:

  • OS: Windows XP XP3 / Win7 / Win8 / Win8.1 / Win10
  • Processor: Intel or AMD CPU Processor x86 / x86_64
  • Graphics: Windows DirectX 11 / Graphic driver with OpenGL 2.0
  • Memory: Minimum 4GB of system memory (RAM)
  • Storage: Minimum 36GB of free hard disk space
  • Hardware Virtualization Technology (Intel VT-x/AMD-V): enabled in BIOS

Bonus: Windows 11 Android Emulator

Windows 11 Android emulator may be considered one of the best free Android emulators for PC in the future. The emulator is still new and still needs work and for that reason did not make our list. We will review the emulator in the future again and update our list. If Windows 11 proves itself, you may not need to install a third-party emulator again to run Android apps on your PC.

Read also: How To Use Xbox 360 Controller Emulator To Play All PC Games

In recent news, Microsoft says Windows 10 and 11 users will soon be able able to run Android apps natively on Windows. This is a great development and we can’t wait to see what the future holds.

That’s it about the best Android emulators for PC. Don’t forget to share and subscribe for more interesting updates.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which Android emulator is best for PC?

The best Android emulator can be said to be what the user describes as best. This is because emulators generally are resource-intensive and some experience can only be best enjoyed on good hardware.

Do Android emulators work on PC?

Yes, Android emulators work fine on PCs.

Which Android emulator is safe for PC?

All the Android emulators that are available online are safe, some, however, are outdated and no longer supported by the developers. So, you should only install emulators that have an active community like the ones we have listed in our article.

What is the fastest Android emulator for PC?

The experience depends on the hardware you have and can vary from one person to another.

What is Android Emulator?

An Android emulator is a software that mimics the Android system, letting you run Android apps and games on a PC.

What are the benefits of using Android Emulator software?

The emulator lets you run just about any Android app or game on a PC. It lets you test new apps before pushing them to the app store if you’re a developer.

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