How to Install Third-party Apps on Amazon Kindle Fire

November 30, 2011
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Proud owners of the new Amazon Kindle Fire may now be busy playing with their new Android tablet right now. We can’t blame them. For sure, it will be irresistible to check out the device.

If you have already checked out the new tablet, you may say that its user interface can be deceiving at times. Is this really Android? The UI of the Kindle Fire is indeed highly customized. The maker of the tablet designed the UI in such a way that it would look like an ebook reader and not just a typical Android tablet. But, behind that highly customized UI is actually Android 2.3 Gingerbread performing all the dirty work underneath.

If you are a Kindle Fire owner, you might have stopped tinkering with your new tablet for a bit because you have some apps in mind that you would like to install into the device. You might probably have scoured all the corners of the Amazon Appstore and did not find what you like.

Do you have some apps in mind that you weren’t able to find in the Amazon Appstore? If that is what you’re looking for, then you are in luck. There are ways for you to install apps from sources outside of the Amazon Appstore. Of course your main source here will be the Internet. Read on how to do that.

Preparing the device

In order for the Kindle Fire to accept apps outside of the Amazon Appstore, there are settings that will have to be configured. The Kindle Fire needs to be configured so that is can allow the installation of apps from unknown sources. Here are the steps:

  1. Tap on the Settings icon located at the top right corner of the home screen.
  2. From the menu that will come up, go to More.
  3. On the main Settings screen you have to tap Device.
  4. Set “Allow Installation of Applications From Unknown Sources” to On.

Installing apps using a PC

Since your Kindle Fire is now ready for morethird-party apps outside Amazon Appstore, we can now go ahead and look for one. Be careful with the choices you pick from the search results you get from the internet. Just like any other software, there are apps out there that are hacked and may cause damage to your system. Ample reading will be necessary. Check out reviews from other users.

Here are the steps on how to install a third-party app using your PC:

  1. Use Google to search for the app you’ve been looking for.
  2. Download the app once found. There are downloads that would already contain the app itself and it will be in a form of an APK file. There are those that will contain a compressed file which you need to extract to get the APK file.
  3. You have to install a file manager into your Kindle Fire. You should be able to find several at the Amazon Appstore. Just search the app store for “file manager.”
  4. Connect the device to your PC using a USB cable.
  5. Tap on the Connect button which will automatically appear on the screen of the device once connected.
  6. Copy the APK file that you just downloaded.
  7. Browse the directories or folders of the Kindle Fire from your PC and paste the APK file on one of the device folders.
  8. Disconnect the tablet from your PC. Tap the disconnect button first before pulling out the cable from your PC.
  9. Open the file manager app on your Kindle Fire and look for the directory where the APK file was stored.
  10. Tap on the APK file to install the app.

These are very simple steps to follow in installing apps outside of Amazon Appstore. And by the way, if you think using Google to search for apps is a bit broad you can also check out websites like GetJar, SlideMe or Handango. These websites also offer a wide array of apps to choose from.

What third-party apps have you installed on your Kindle Fire?

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