There are plenty of mobile games that have been ported to the Nintendo Switch, but what if the home-handheld hybrid system could play Android games natively? That dream has inched closer to reality thanks to two developers who have managed to run a semi-stable build of Android Q on Nintendo’s portable console.
The project comes from homebrew developers Billy Laws and Max Keller who have managed to get not only get the OS to boot, but get Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, the touchscreen, and even the Joy-Con controllers to work with the AOSP build.
Check out the embedded video below to see the Switch transformed into a (very slow) Android tablet:
— Max Keller (@langer_hans) February 23, 2019
The Switch is powered by an ARM-based Nvidia Tegra X1, so Android support was always on the cards for dedicated modders. A major exploit recently opened the door to mod Linux support, so it was only a matter of time before Android followed.
As impressive as the effort is, however, it’s still a long way from being stable. There’s currently no audio or USB-C functionality and, crucially, no support for Android games as the build runs only on the X1’s CPU, not the Maxwell-based GPU.
I doubt this is the end of the duo’s work, but be aware that if you want to try anything like this yourself it’s a surefire way to void any warranty on your console.
For now, your best bet for playing the best Android games on the move is still a decent gaming phone — especially with phones like the Red Magic Mars and Asus ROG Phone now including pressure and physical trigger buttons, respectively.
Up next: Here are the best phones for gaming