Microsoft Remote Desktop Apps for iOS, Mac OS X, and Android available for download

Microsoft Remote Desktop Apps for iOS, Mac OS X, and Android available for download

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My name is Olof Mases, program manager on the Remote Desktop Virtualization team, and I am excited to announce, in addition to the General Availability of Windows Server 2012 R2, that our Remote Desktop apps for iOS, Mac OS X, and Android are now available for download from the App Store, the Mac App Store, and the Google Play Store.

We are excited to introduce clients with best of class performance and security including Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) 8.0 and RemoteFX. You can experience the power of Windows with RemoteFX in a Remote Desktop client designed to help you get your work done wherever you are.

With these apps users can access:

  • Their PCs (Windows Pro and Enterprise versions)
  • Session-based desktops
  • Personal or pooled virtual desktops
  • RemoteApp programs

Rich Windows experience

The Remote Desktop apps provide a rich multi-touch experience with RDP and RemoteFX supporting Windows gestures. Users can get a rich Windows experience and be productive on their personally-owned devices. They can easily connect to external monitors or projectors for presentations

RDP 8 and RemoteFX

The apps use RDP 8.0 and RemoteFX for high fidelity audio and graphics. The protocol automatically adjusts for client performance and network bandwidth. Given sufficient bandwidth and client resources, streaming of HD video with high definition audio is possible up to 30fps.

For lower bandwidth scenarios such as 3G or WAN, the protocol will dynamically adjust the compression and frame rate to deliver the best possible user experience.

RemoteFX has been optimized for all network topologies and client types. Whether you are a road warrior always on the go or using your device at home or in the office, you will get the best possible remoting experience available for your devices of choice.

Secure Connections through NLA

The Remote Desktop apps support the latest Network Layer Authentication (NLA) protocol, protecting your users and your data. The apps also connect to older servers that do not support the newer, stronger encryption offered by NLA but will alert the user that they are connecting to a potentially unsafe server.

Using strong encryption to protect your data is critical and this feature has long been requested by our customers.

Connection Center (the Remote Desktop apps UI) provides simplified management of all your remote desktops and resources in one simple view.


Figure 1: Screenshot of the iOS app Connection Center

The local keyboard with Windows extensions allows easy interaction with the remote desktops and apps.


Figure 2: Screenshot of Android app with local keyboard

Full support for RemoteApp programs on all platforms gives you the ability to run your favorite applications on your device of choice wherever you are.


Figure 3: Screenshot of Mac app running Internet Explorer, File Explorer, and Calculator as RemoteApp programs.

Powerful Pan and Zoom feature allows you to easily interact with remote applications on small screens.


Figure 4: Screenshot of Android app zooming in with Pan control

The Remote Desktop apps will connect to the following versions of Windows:

  • Windows Client operating system: Windows 8.1, Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP*
  • Windows Server operating system: Windows Server 2012 R2, Window Server 2012, Windows Server 2008 R2

* The oldest version tested and verified is SP3 for Windows XP for the iOS, MacOS, and Android apps.

There is no separate license needed for Microsoft Remote Desktop app. You are allowed to use this app for iOS (iPhone and iPad), Mac OS X and Android devices with a Windows Server 2012 RDS CAL (Client Access License). If you have the Windows Server 2012 RDS CAL directly or through Software Assurance, you can download the Microsoft Remote Desktop app from the respective application stores at no extra cost and start using them. With the introduction of these clients we are strengthening our commitment to helping organizations address consumerization of IT. I encourage you to download these apps from the respective application stores and enjoy the rich Windows experience on your BYO device.

Thanks again to our partners and customers who provided us invaluable feedback!

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  • Please add 4 and 3 and type the answer here:
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  • "I have downloaded the app for the iPhone, iPad and OS X Mavericks.  On the iPhone and iPad I have been able to use gestures with a Windows 8.1 system.  However, I am at a loss to figure out if that capability exists with the touch pad on the Mac.  The brief testing I have done has not worked.  Is there I setting I am not seeing that will turn on gestures from a Mac to Windows 8.1?"

    After thinking about this, I had my "duh" moment.  The track pad would not be same as actually touching the screen like on an iPad or iPhone so of course there is no touchpad support.

  • iPhone application has becoming famous around the world which makes the developer very rich.

  • hye help me ... i want to know that .... ms access file open in jelly bean 4.2 or not

  • What about screen rotation?

    It seems to be very stick in landscape.

  • Hello?

    Remote Apps do NOT work. I can connect with XP, Win7, Win8, Open Source HTML5 Client, and third party mac client but not with the Android App Version. No option to Configure manualand when try to use webinterface getting the message "wrong configured rdp file"

    Dont say it works when it doesnt!!!!

  • Lol... i was too stupid to find the other configuration Options on the first page. Works Great!!!!

  • It's actually ridiculous, how Microsoft themselves don't have an app for their own Windows Phone 8. I'm an admin, and I need to VPN to administer my servers everywhere, even in the middle of the lake. Please do it Microsoft.

  • Hi, Our hosting Company coulden't get this to work, but until now.

    I think I found a bug.

    We are using Server 2012 R2 for all our Components, RDweb, RDGW, CB and RDSH. When enabling redirect in IIS on RDweb, from to IOS gets a "404 File Not Found". Removing the redirect, all works as expected.  Could you look into this?

    Thanks for a great blog!


  • Remote resources with the android app works without issues when I'm on my internal network, but when I shift to external access it doesn't work.

    Error: The gateway failed to connect with the message: 404 Not Found.

  • can these remote ios apps services also be used on mac platform.

  • where is the url to download the Mac version?

  • shame this is still useless for the government space since there is no smart card support

  • Hi Olof,

    Do you have an ETA on the release of the Windows Phone remote desktop app? It is eagerly anticipated :)

  • It would be nice to pin remote resources to the ipad screen - like a web shortcut, without have to launch remote desktop app every time

  • Please add smart card redirection. Otherwise, users can get smart card redirection support on Mac with rdesktop/X11. Macports rdesktop require a little tweaking to get it to work until patches are incorporated. See

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