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How to Sideload Apps on Android TV

by Natalie
How to Sideload Apps on Android TV

Sideloading is a process that you can use to install apps that are not available through the official channel. If you can’t find the required app on the Google Play Store of Android TV, then you can use unofficial means to install the desired app on your TV. The unofficial means installing apps via sideloading technique. Now, let us see how to sideload apps on Android TV.

Different Methods to Sideload Apps on Android TV / Android TV Box

You can sideload apps on Google TV by using the methods below:

  • Sideload Apps Using Android Smartphone
  • Sideload Apps Using Cloud Storage
  • Install/Sideload Apk from your PC Using ADB

To install unknown apps on your Android TV, you need to enable the unknown sources for the tool you will use for sideloading.

1) Turn on your Android TV and navigate to Settings.

2) Click on Device Preferences and select Security & Restrictions.

3) Click on Unknown sources and turn the toggle on for the Sideloading tool you want (for example – Send to Files, File Commander)

Select unknown sources

Sideload Apps Using Android Smartphone

1) On your Android device and download the Apk File of the app that you wish to sideload.

2) Go to Play Store and Install Send Files to TV app on your Android TV and Android Smartphone.

3) Once the installation is done, open the Send Files to TV app on both devices.

Select Open to sideload apps on Android TV

4) Ensure that both devices are connected to the same network.

5) Select the Receive option on your Android TV.

6) Click on the Send option on your Android Smartphone as you are sending the apk file.

7) Select the Apk file and send it to your Android TV by clicking on the name of the TV.

Select the Apk file

8) Now, the apk file will be sent to your Android TV.

9) On your Android TV, go to Play Store and download the File Commander app.

10) Enable File Commander in Unknown Sources.

Enable File Commander to sideload Apps on Android TV

11) Launch the File Commander app and select Internal Storage.

12) Navigate to the Downloads folder and search for the Apk file that you’ve received from your Android Smartphone.

13) Choose the apk file and click on Install.

14) The app will be installed on your Android TV.

Sideload Apps Using Cloud Storage

You can sideload apps using cloud storage services like OneDrive, Dropbox, Google Drive, or others.

1) Launch your Smartphone and download the apk file for the app you want.

2) Upload the apk file to a cloud storage application like Google Drive.

3) Download and install File Commander on your Android TV and enable unknown sources for it.

4) Open the File Commander app and go to Menu.

5) Click on Add Cloud option and choose Google Drive.

Select Google Drive

6) Login with your account and select the apk file that you have uploaded.

7) Run the file and install the app on your Android TV

Install or Sideload Apk on Android TV From PC Using ADB

Using ADB or Android Debug Bridge on your PC is also one of the ways to sideload apps on your Android TV.

1) First, install 15 Seconds ADB Installer on your PC.

Note: If you are using Linux or macOS, you need to download Nexus Tools.

2) Open your Terminal/ Command Line application and enter the command adb –help and press Enter.

Note: If you get an error then close the command line application and re-try the above process until there is no error.

Enter adb --help to sideload apps on Android TV

3) On your Android TV select Settings and navigate to Device Preferences.

4) Select About and keep clicking on Build until you see a message “No need, you are already a developer“.

Click on Build to sideload apps on Android TV

5) Go back to Settings and select Network & Internet. Click on Active connection.

6) It will show you a list of details and note down the IP address.

Note: This IP address is your Android TVs IP address.

IP Address

7) On your PC, enter adb connect (followed by the IP address that you have noted down).

8) Once you receive a prompt on your Android TV, select Accept on the prompt.

9) Now, you will see a message showing ADB successfully connected.

10) To verify whether your Android TV and PC are connected, enter adb devices on the command line.

Enter adb devices to sideload apps on Android TV

11) To install the apk file on your Android TV from your PC, enter adb install (the path of the apk file that you want to install on Android TV).

Enter the Apk file path

12) If you see a success message appearing on the screen, the app will be on your TV.

How to Open the Sideloded Apps on Your Android TV?

Unlike the regular apps, the sideloaded apps will not be available in the launcher or the Apps menu. Instead, you need to access them through Settings > Apps. Here, you can find all the sideloaded apps on your Android TV.

You can also install Sideload Launcher from your Play Store to select and open the sideloaded apps on your Android TV.

Frequently Asked Questions

1) Can you Sideload Apps on Android TV?

Yes, you can sideload apps on Android TV in several ways.

2) How to Sideload Apk to Android TV?

You can sideload Apk to Android TV from your Smartphone, PC, or Cloud Storage.

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