Your Fire TV runs a mildly modified version of Android operative system, which includes Amazon’s app store as the official source for installing apps and games.

sideload apk fire tvRegrettably enough, the Amazon’s App Store is heavily censored on apps and games availability for your Fire TV. At this time, your Fire TV is also quite un-rootable and thus you cannot install the Google App store.

Many of us managed to circumvent this limitation by downloading our favorite apps and games into our computer. Then, with the help of ADB command line (which is part of Google’s Android SDK, in the form of a command line utility) we can issue the appropriate install command and side-load any apk into our Fire TV.

Simplifying the installation of an apk on your Fire TV

fire tv total commanderFirst, you need to install a file manager utility into your Fire TV. Luckily enough, the Total Commander file manager is officially supported on Amazon’s App store, so you can install it with no hassle at all.

Once you open Total Commander, you may browse into an apk file and select it: Your Fire TV will readily install the apk by invoking the Android’s native apk install procedure!

Getting your apk inside your Fire TV

You can download any apk on your computer, into a pendrive (usb drive). Then you can connect your pendrive into your Fire TV USB port.  You will be able to browser the pendrive contents with Total Commander. Just search for your downloaded apk, select and install it.

Note: You will need to turn off USB DEBUG option on your Fire TV, if you turned it on earlier, for your USB drive to be recognized.

Maybe your first apk to install by this method will be the ES File Explorer, a favorite tool of mine, not available for Fire TV on Amazon’s App Store. If so, you can promptly ditch Total Commander 🙂

Downloading your apk directly into your Fire TV

You can install a web browser on your Fire TV, like Firefox  (you may use the pendrive trick I just described).  It is a matter of opening your installed web browser and search the web for your needed apk apps and games.  Once found, you can download them directly into your Fire TV.

Congratulations, now you can search, download and install any APK available on the web directly from your Fire TV, thanks to Total Commander and a web browser.