How to Transform Your Android Phone Into a Microsoft Phone

Android is owned by Google, so most of its pre-installed apps are from Google. However, the Android operating system is open source and quite adaptable to customizations.

This adaptability allows you to modify your Android device the way you want. If you are a hardcore user of Microsoft or are simply bored with traditional Google or manufacturer-made Android, replacing your phone’s default interface and apps with alternatives. Microsoft’s position is pretty easy. Let’s take a look.

Replace main Google apps with alternative Microsoft apps

Microsoft offers an impressive suite of Android apps. If you’re a Windows user who relies on Microsoft services, you’ll really appreciate its Android apps.

So, here are some solid Microsoft alternatives to core Google or manufacturer-provided apps that you can use to turn your Android phone into a Microsoft phone.

1. Use Microsoft Launcher

Microsoft Launcher is a great alternative to the stock launcher that will enhance your productivity especially if you are a Windows user. It is more customizable than most pre-installed launchers and offers elegant home screen widgets for Microsoft services like Outlook, Calendar, and News.

You can randomly change your background with Bing images with just one tap. Furthermore, the launcher also gives you a lot of control over your device’s images and animations, such as screen switching and icon styles. At the same time, the Bing bar at the top will allow you to search for anything on the internet easily.

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Download: Microsoft Launcher (Free)

2. Type with the Microsoft SwiftKey keyboard

Microsoft SwiftKey is a keyboard with many features. In addition to the typing function, it can also translate text directly from the keyboard and has a lot of styling themes to customize.

Its gesture feature lets you write text by swiping across the screen, while its powerful voice input support helps you dictate and print the text respectively. All in all, it’s a solid keyboard replacement for Gboard.

Download: Microsoft SwiftKey (Free)

3. Outlook for Email Settings

With the Outlook app, you can ditch Gmail. Deciding which of them is better is another discussion, but if you are an Outlook user, you will most likely prefer to use the official Outlook client.

Outlook lets you add your Google account to it, so you don’t have to worry about your main Google account for Android. Quick notifications, faster replies, adding events to your calendar, strong spam protection, and sending large attachments, all pretty seamlessly with Outlook.

Download: Microsoft Outlook (Free, in-app purchases available)

4. Use Edge to Browse

Edge has become a great alternative to Google Chrome, especially since it switched to base Chromium. And since it is a cross-platform app, it allows you to transfer web pages and data to your other devices easily.

Edge is fast and offers all the necessary browser features. You can link your Outlook account to Edge to sync your history, passwords, saved web pages, and other browsing data. It is a privacy-friendly browser that prevents tracking on websites. In addition, it also provides a built-in ad blocker that most of the default Android browsers lack.

Download: Microsoft Edge (Free)

5. Install Cortana for your AI Assistant

Cortana for Android is capable of doing almost everything the Google Assistant has to offer. It allows you to set reminders and alarms, check your schedule, search the web, check sports scores and more.

The app lets you sync your activities and history across devices, keeping you connected to the Microsoft ecosystem. Cortana is no longer available on Google Play, but you can still download the old version if you want to try it out. Here’s our guide on how to get Android apps to get help on the subject.

6. Search with Microsoft Bing

Ultimately, Google is the default search engine for Android devices, but you can easily switch to Microsoft Bing by installing its official Android app that provides a widget you can use instead. for the Google search bar.

Bing provides decent search results and also supports multimedia searches, like image search. If you are used to searching the Internet using Bing on your PC, then this app will make a huge difference for you.

Download: Microsoft Bing (Free)

Complete Microsoft Phone Experience

In addition to the six apps mentioned above, Microsoft has several other Android apps that you can use to complete the full Microsoft experience on your Android phone. Let’s take a look.

If you are a Windows user, you should try Microsoft’s Link to Windows app. As the name suggests, it allows you to link your Android device to your Windows device. With this connection, you can sync notifications, make calls, send messages, and access files and photos across your devices.

Download: Link to Windows (Free)

2. Stay connected with Skype

Skype needs no introduction as it is one of the best video calling and messaging apps available for Windows as well as Android devices. The application allows group calling, file sharing, messaging and many other useful features. You can use it as an alternative to Google Meet or even Zoom.

Download: Skype (Free, in-app purchases available)

3. Use OneDrive for Cloud Storage

OneDrive is a pretty good cloud storage service from Microsoft that also has an Android app available. You can easily sync your data across devices by storing it in the cloud while hiding private files in your personal vault.

OneDrive offers 5GB of free storage, but you can upgrade it up to 1TB through an Office 365 subscription. This app can replace Google Drive and Dropbox.

Download: Microsoft OneDrive (Free, with in-app purchases available)

4. Stay Organized with Microsoft To Do

Microsoft To Do is a task management application that allows you to set reminders for your tasks, take notes on important things, and plan your events.

The app also shows flagged messages from your email and makes it more convenient to add reminders and set deadlines directly from Outlook. You can use this instead of Google Tasks or any other to-do list app you might be using.

Download: Microsoft To Do (Free)

5. Work on the go with Microsoft Office

Microsoft Office is probably one of the most powerful document viewers out there and is also available on Android. Inside this app you have a document editor, presentation viewer, spreadsheet app, and cloud storage. It also has other powerful features, such as a document scanner, image to text converter and more. This app is a great alternative to Google Docs.


Download: Microsoft Office (Free, in-app purchases available)

How to change default apps on Android

Once you’ve installed your Microsoft apps, you may want to set them as default to handle email, web links, etc. To do this, go to your phone’s settings and search for “Apps.” default use”. An option will appear, most likely under Application Manager. Click it to continue.

This menu will show you a list of apps specified as default. For example, Google Chrome might be your default browser, and Gboard might be your default keyboard. You can change the default apps from there by tapping on each app and choosing other apps to replace them. This is our detailed article on the topic of changing default apps.

How to disable pre-installed apps on your phone

You can also disable the main Google apps you’ve replaced — things like Chrome and Gmail can’t be uninstalled.

To disable pre-installed apps, go to settings and search for “Apps”. It will show an option along the lines of Application Settings in Application Management. Click it to continue. The next screen will show you a list of all the apps on your device. Here, you can tap on any app and disable it from the options at the bottom. See this detailed guide on how to remove pre-installed apps.

Discover more Microsoft Android apps

Microsoft is constantly developing its mobile apps and they are all as good as the Google apps already installed on your phone. You will find an app for almost all the major functions in their Google Play store.

By using these apps and experimenting more from Google Play, you can create a complete Microsoft ecosystem on your Android phone, essentially converting it into a Windows phone.


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Sarah Ridley

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