As the saying goes, “There’s an app for that.”
Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. Sometimes we come across an app we really want for our Android phone only to find out it is not on the Play Store.
This does not mean that the application does not exist or that you will never be able to find it. It just means that it can only be downloaded and installed using the APK format.
Knowing how to use these downloads in APK format (Android Package Kit) may seem like an impossible task at first. Although its installation process is a bit more laborious and less intuitive than the Play Store, it is not difficult. Follow these simple steps and you will be able to install all the applications you want on your Android device.
Word of warning
Downloading applications outside the Play Store is practical but it can also be dangerous for your phone depending on where you download the APK file. Many hackers use these applications to introduce malware into your phone and even steal data.
For this reason, we recommend downloading a good antivirus app.
How to allow installation of an APK file
All Android devices have a default option that prevents you from installing any application from unknown sources. As a result, you can only download and add applications that have been reviewed by the Play Store.
In order to install a third-party application, you will first need to follow these steps:
Step 1: Access the Configuration menu
The first step is very simple; you just have to click on the “Settings” menu of your phone or Android device.
Step 2: Allow the installation of unknown sources
In the configuration menu, you will need to activate the option that will allow the installation of APK files. To do so, click on “Lock Screen and Security” and then look for the option “Unknown Sources.” This is usually at the bottom of the list.
Click on the option to allow the installation of applications from sources other than the Play Store. Your phone will warn you that it is dangerous to install third-party sources. Throw caution to the wind, and confirm the change.
- If you use a Samsung Galaxy phone: The steps to activate this option on a Samsung Galaxy phone are very similar. The only difference is that you must go through “Sources” to activate the installation of unknown sources.
- If you use an LG phone: If your phone is LG you will have to navigate first through “Settings” followed by “General.” In this menu, click on “Fingerprints and Security.” From here, click “Allow.”
How to install an APK file
After downloading the APK file to your Android device, you can install it. Search for the file in question within the downloads of our phone and click on it.
If you have trouble locating your phone’s download folder, we recommend that you install a free file browser for your phone such as Windows File Explorer.
Now, you’re free to download apps not featured in the Play Store. Again, please exercise caution when choosing which sites to get your apps, and what you download. You have the potential to download awesome apps for your phone, but you also have the potential to kill it.