What is APK and how to install one?

Android Application - APK File how to Install

How to side-load apps on your Android device

If you’ve ever searched for an Android application outside the Google Play Store, you’ll have run over APK files – but what are they, and what do they do?

The APK extension represents the Android Package Kit and is the file format utilized for installing Android applications (much like EXE for Windows). If you want to install an app from outside the Google Play Store (a procedure known as ‘sideloading’) you’ll need to download and run the APK manually.

Are APK files safe?

Sometimes, however, it’s typically best to assume not. The Google Play Store isn’t as tightly regulated as Apple’s App Store, but any malicious applications are usually identified and removed quickly.

There’s no such protection if you download an APK from a third-party site, and malicious developers can trick unsuspecting Android users into installing ransomware or different malicious software malware by dressing it up to look like a legitimate app.

Related article : The best Android anti-virus in 2018

YouTube video downloaders are a particular target. Downloading videos from YouTube without permission violates its terms of utilization, so Google refuses to list such applications on the Play Store. Android users want to save a clip so often look elsewhere, and can easily download something bad.

There are exceptions. The Amazon Appstore, for instance, is just accessible to download as an APK, but you do so at your own risk.

How to install an APK

If you want to install an APK and you’re confident it’s legitimate (in case you’re trying an application built by a friend but not yet published on the Google Play Store, for example, or you want to try Amazon’s applications), you’ll need to make a couple of adjustments first.

Access your device’s security settings and tap the switch marked ‘Allow installation of applications from sources other than the Google Play Store’.

What is APK and how to install one?

Once you have done this, download the APK and tap on the file to install it. After you’ve confirmed, it will be installed and run like some other Android application.

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