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How to create a complete Microsoft experience on Android


Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform may be long gone at this point, but don’t despair: You can still get a fantastic Microsoft experience on your mobile device. You just have to look to an unlikely bedfellow.

With Windows Phone out of the picture, Microsoft has been devoting an ever-increasing amount of energy to creating its own mini-platform within Google’s Android ecosystem. And given Android’s immense flexibility and customization potential, that opens the door to some pretty compelling possibilities.

With the right set of apps, in fact, you can basically create a Windows-centric environment on any Android device — with everything from the services you adore to the phone-to-PC harmony you crave.

Here are the steps and ingredients you need to get started.

1. Create your Microsoft-focused Android home screen

The core of your Android setup is your home screen — and the app that’ll turn that area of your interface into a hub for your Microsoft-Android experience is the aptly named Microsoft Launcher.

On the surface, Microsoft Launcher has the same sorts of features you’ll find in other Android launchers — the typical tools for customizing your home screen’s appearance, creating gesture-based shortcuts, and so on. But beyond that, it adds a hefty dose of Microsoft into the mix, with Bing-powered search by default, integrated access to various Microsoft services, and prominent placement of recommended Microsoft apps.

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