The best thing about the Amazon Fire 7 tablet is $ 49. The worst part is that the Android-based Fire OS 6 software lacks most of Android. All the standard Google apps like Google Maps, Google Photos or Google Drive are missing (as with other Fire tablets from Amazon). What's worse, the integrated Amazon Appstore is a replacement for the Google Play Store and most of the apps you know and love are not available.
There is hope, however, if you do not mind tinkering a bit. Amazon allows the installation of apps from external sources on all its Fire tablets. This means that you can install the Google Play Store. Once you've enabled this feature, you can load Android packages (APKs) side-by-side. Force manual apps on your device that would otherwise not be supported.
This tutorial shows how to load the Google Play Store and the required apps side by side to make it work on an Amazon tablet. It's not the easiest thing, but it's well worth the effort.
Luckily, rooting your Amazon Fire tablet is not required. Therefore, there is no immediate risk of your warranty becoming invalid. However, Amazon does not provide support for troubleshooting problems that you might encounter. So be careful and know that certain APKs may not work as intended. If you think about downloading APKs that usually cost you money, show your support by buying them from the Google Play Store in your browser.
How to find the operating system version of your tablet:
- Open the Settings app
- Scroll down to "Device Options" at the bottom of the screen
- Choose System Updates to view the system version
With this information, you can now download and install the four APKs that are required for the Google Play Store to function properly: Google Account Manager, the Google Services Framework, Google Play Services, and the Google Play Store.
You do not have to worry about matching the Google Play Services and Google Play Store APKs with your Android version number. The latest APKs apply to devices with at least Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, including all Fire tablets.
- First, open the Silk Browser app on the Fire tablet (you want to download it here). You get the APKs from APKmirror.com. (I trust this site and have used it in the past to easily load APKs onto an Amazon Fire 7 system as well as personal devices, but this too is at your own risk.)
- You need to make sure of this Download the right APK file. When you visit the download page for each app (see below), try syncing the Android version of your tablet (note: Fire OS 6 = Android 7.1 Nougat and Fire OS 5 = Android 5.1 Lollipop) to the end of the app APK file in the listing.
- Download and install Google Account Manager, Google Services Framework, Google Play Services, and Google Play Store in the order listed . According to TechJunkie the Google Play Store will not work if not properly installed. I can confirm that.
Accessing Locally Stored Files on the Fire Tablet
Strangely enough, if you have to navigate away from the downloaded APKs and find them again, the preloaded Amazon Docs app is installed on the Fire tablet and is strangely a file manager , To access your downloaded files, open the app, click the menu button in the upper-left corner of the display, and then tap Download under Local Storage. Note, however, that the APK filenames are long and difficult to understand. However, if you downloaded them in the order listed above, the timestamp in the file should help you figure out which file to install first, second, third, and fourth.
- If you have these APKs installed correctly, you can start the Google Play Store app and sign in to your Google Account. From there you can download all available apps or games.
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