The recently-released XP Mod is an Android Launcher, or home screen replacement, that recreates the look and feel of Windows XP. Perhaps its most impressive feature is the functional Windows Explorer clone, which makes finding files stored on your phone a similar experience to browsing files on a PC, making the app more than mere novelty. Currently in beta, XP Mod is missing a few key features that will likely keep it from being an everyday application, but this could change with future updates.
Upon start-up, XP Mod greets you with a familiar log-in screen, the classic Windows XP chimes play, and you are brought to your desktop. In the current beta release, there are only four icons available on your desktop: My Documents, My Computer, Recycle Bin, and Internet Explorer. Each of these opens a specific Android application. You'll also find the Start menu, which functions much as you'd expect albeit with a few limitations. All of your installed apps are available within the "All Programs" tab, however certain items like the Control Panel are not yet functional. Additionally, you cannot add icons to the desktop yet, which really cuts down XP Mod's customization options.
By recreating the experience found on desktop computers, XP Mod has managed solve some of Android's file system woes. Windows Explorer has long been at the heart of Windows operating systems, and it feels right at home on Android (swapping out hard drives for SD cards). Touch control is fully implemented, meaning you can flick and scroll through folders, making accessing specific files on your SD card fast and easy.
XP Mod features desktop style resolutions. On a phone, this means icons will look tiny, making them hard to press accurately. However, on a tablet the experience looks just like a Windows netbook, and using a USB mouse adds to the realism.
XP Mod is free to download. For now its the easiest way to convince friends you've installed Windows XP on your Android handset.
See the stories that matter in your inbox every morning