Microsoft released their Windows 10 Anniversary Update this past week. Part of that update involved native notification support for Android devices.
That’s right: you can connect your Android smartphone or tablet to Windows 10 without any third party software.
Yes, we’ve always had this functionality (sort of) using PushBullet and AirDroid. But now, with this latest update, we have it built into Windows from the ground-up.
Your notifications will be accessible through Cortana and your normal Windows notifications section in the system tray.
Notifications are mirrored – so incoming notifications from your Android device will also appear on your Windows 10 computer. All notifications for Android apps are supported. However, the support varies – some notifications can only be viewed, while others can be interacted with.
Ready to learn how to setup notifications on Windows 10? Keep reading.
How to Add Android Notification Support to Windows 10
Basically, this process involves installing the Cortana app onto Android and then setting it up to work with your device. It’s surprisingly easy and won’t take you more than a minute or so.
Step 1) Install the Cortana app from the Google Play Store here
Step 2) Look for the Sync Notifications option from Cortana’s Settings menu (right-click on Cortana and look for the gear icon)
Step 3) Under the Sync Notifications menu, you’ll see a list of devices, which should include all devices on which you’ve installed Cortana. Choose your Android phone or tablet from that list.
That’s it! you’re all done. It’s surprisingly easy to setup.
After you’ve set it up, you can customize the way you receive notifications. For example, you can choose to “Discard” notifications on your Windows 10 computer, which clears them from both your Android device and from Windows 10 (if you just click the X button or swipe, they’ll still appear on your Android device).
You’ll also notice that notification support varies between apps. Some apps will let you reply from within or manage it in other ways, while others basically just let you view it. Remember: this is still a beta service, so it’s not perfect yet.
Some of the neat things we’ve found so far include the fact that Cortana sends a confirmation message to your phone when you’ve sent an SMS from Windows 10 – so you’ll know your text was sent. You also get a missed call notification on Windows 10 with a text message reply box – so you can send a text if you missed a call on your phone.
Ultimately, this feature should improve with every Windows update (if Microsoft is smart, anyway). I’ve never been a fan of Pushbullet or AirDroid, but I can see myself using a more unobtrusive option like this. We’ll see how much Microsoft supports it in the future.