Install Android applications from outside of the Play Store on your mobile device.

One of the huge benefits of using Android over iOS is that with Android, you can download and install files from anywhere. You aren’t restricted to only installing software from your application market, or limited to downloading music from you locked in music app. You have the freedom to use your device as you please.

Without further ado, here is how to install applications from outside of the Play Store:

  1.  Go into your phone’s Settings > Unknown sources and  make sure that box is checked.
    • This tells you phone that you know what you are doing and you understand the risks associated with downloading and installing software from outside of the Play Store.
  2. Navigate to a website where you can download an Android APK file. For this example, I am going to https://adblockplus.or/en/anroid-install.
  3. Click the big green “Download” button
  4. Your device will put up its last line of defence against you breaking your phone. It will warn you with the following prompt (or something very similar)
    • “This type of file can harm your device. Do you want to keep xyz-version123.apk anyway?
    • If you trust the source you are downloading this APK from, go ahead and press the “OK” button.
    • If you don’t trust the source, just click cancel and you will have barely averted disaster.
  5. If you click OK, the file will be downloaded.
  6. This step is where a majority of the less technology prone users will get confused. When you download an app from the Play Store, the app is automagically installed on your device. However, upon downloading an app from the Internet, you will have to manually install the application. To install the application, navigate to your phone’s application drawer, where you will find an app called “Downloads.” Open it.
  7. Within “Downloads”, you should find the file that you downloaded above. In this example, the name of the file is xyz-version123.apk. Click that file.
  8. You will now be presented with the all familiar looking installation screen that you are normally presented with upon downloading an app from the Play Store.
  9. Click “Install” and the app will install.
  10. If you see the screen with a checkmark that indicates that the application has installed, you can click “Open” and you’ll be able to open the app. If you don’t get to this screen, you have run into a problem. Start over from “Step 2″ and see if you missed something. If not, Google your problem. I ain’t getting paid for this.