BlueStacks is planning to bring over 400,000 Android applications to Windows 8 this year. The company originally released its "App Player" software for Windows 7 in October, but it's now compatible with Windows 8. Android apps will simply run as desktop apps under Windows 8, very much like the previous Windows 7 app, and without any porting required. In fact, BlueTracks claims it is the only program worldwide that can run native ARM-based or x86 Android apps on Windows PCs and tablets. Android's Market just hit the 400,000 mark, and BlueStacks hopes to bring the majority of them to Windows 8.
BlueStacks is also working with some PC manufacturers to pre-load the App Player on devices. Taiwanese manufacturer InHon plans to release a Windows 8 Ultrabook later this year that includes the BlueStacks App Player software. We got an early hands-on with the latest BlueStacks App Player for Windows 8 at CES this week, and can report it's very similar to the Windows 7 variant. The software is still in Alpha, so it's a little buggy, but apps run fullscreen with hardware acceleration — impressive for an early copy of Windows 8. BlueStacks is planning to release a beta copy of the software in February, around the same time that Microsoft opens up its Windows Store for Windows 8.