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How to install the Google Play Store manually

Kris Carlon
31

Lots of people pick up tablets and smartphones that don't have the Google Play Store pre-installed on them. Perhaps you've just granted yourself root access and accidentally deleted the Play Store, or flashed a custom ROM and don't want all of Google's apps. Fortunately it's super easy to get Google's app market place running on your device, so you don't have to worry about missing out on all the Play Store has to offer.

google play music nexus 5 duke nukem
Without the Play Store installed, you're missing out on tons of great Android content! / © AndroidPIT

How to install Google Play Store APK

The simplest method is one that should already be quite familiar to you if you're an avid follower of AndroidPIT: just install the Play Store APK manually. An APK is the Android version of a exe program on your computer. Instead of downloading an app from the Play Store, you simply load it yourself without the Play Store's help. This is of course very useful when it is the Play Store itself you want to install!

You can always pick up the latest version of the Google Play Store APK on XDA Developers forum or at Android Police, who always do great teardowns of the new features when new updates appear.

androidpit google play store teaser
An Android device isn't really an Android device without the Google Play Store. / © AndroidPIT

Direct sideload from your device

Now, there's two ways to get the APK installed on your device: directly or from your computer. We'll do the easy option first. Just follow one of the links above or do a Google search for the latest Google Play Store version and download the APK file to your Android. Next, you need to have ''Unknown Sources'' enabled in your device's security settings. Don't be alarmed, unknown sources are simply locations outside of the Play Store. Once you've completed the process you can disable ''Unknown Sources'' again just to be safe.

FlashPlayer1
Before you can install APKs, you need to enable Unknown Sources in your settings. / © Android PIT

So, depending on which device you have, you want to go to your Settings and find the Security section. From here scroll down until you find the ''Unknown Sources'' check box and make sure it is enabled/checked off. Now, just go to your downloads folder or click the completed download notification in the notifications drop down shade, and launch the APK. You'll be prompted to read permissions and accept then the app will install. Google Play will automatically install Google Services Framework, which is what Google uses to keep the Play Store communicating with your apps, so it knows when to update them. And that's it, create a Google account or log in and you're golden. The same sideloading process works for all APKs.

FlashPlayer2
Once you've got any APK on your device (Flash Player here), just launch it and you're done / © Android PIT

Sideload from your computer via USB

If this method doesn't work for you, you don't have a data or Wi-Fi connection on your Android or you'd simply like to run an anti-virus check or something on the APK first before installing it, you can download the APK to your computer instead. Then the same process applies: enable ''Unknown Sources'' and then connect your device to your computer with a USB cable and copy the APK over to your Android, from where you do the same steps as above, just launch it, accept permissions and log in.

micro usb kabel
Sideloading from your PC with a USB cable can sometimes avoid install problems with APKs. / © AndroidPIT

If for some reason the Google Services Framework doesn't auto-install, you can do it manually yourself too. Just check the same sources mentioned above for the Google Services Framework APK and install it as well. Make sure you install any APKs from trusted sources and that you have read the feedback on those sites to ensure the app is functioning well before installing them, just to avoid any headaches. Note: depending on what type of device you have, you may need to be rooted to manually install the Play Store, but that's a tutorial for another day.

Have you installed the Google Play Store manually? Any other APKs now that you know how?

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Comments

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  • gude123 4 months ago Link

    habe was falsches eingestellt ? lese alles in englisch.. Net weiter schlimm ist nur dieser Beitrag

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      Loie Favre 4 months ago Link

      Hallo! Hast du .DE oder .COM eingegeben? Oder hast du den Artikel über den App gefunden? Damit können wir herausfinden, wo das Problem liegt. :) Danke!

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  • Diptangshu M. 4 months ago Link

    I don't understand a thing that you two have said. Can you please translate into plain English?

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  • Diptangshu M. 4 months ago Link

    Okay. Hallo =Hello
    Artikel =Article?
    Is it French?

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      Loie Favre 4 months ago Link

      Hi there. This user ended up on the wrong website and I asked him a few questions about how this happened. It is German actually!

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  • Diptangshu M. 4 months ago Link

    Ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo. Should have checked your bio first.
    Is there any app to learn new languages on Android phones?

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      Kris Carlon 4 months ago Link

      Why yes there is, I just wrote an article about this exact topic! Here's the link: www.androidpit.com/how-to-learn-a-new-language-with-only-5-apps

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  • Diptangshu M. 4 months ago Link

    Exactly what I was looking for.Thanks, Mr. Kris.

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  • Giorgos Vasilas 1 month ago Link

    Hey! I got a problem with my tablet. It hasnt got google play store and I downloaded many times following your steps. But when I'm about to open it, it closes in an instand, showing me a message telling me " the application google play store has stopped unexpectedly. please try again".Can you help me solve this? Thank you in response.

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      Kris Carlon 1 month ago Link

      Hey @Giorgos, check to see if you have Download Manager enabled. Go to your Settings > Apps > ''All'' tab and look for Download Manager. Tap it and if it says Disable, tap that and then enable it again, or if it says Enable, tap that and exit. From here you should be able to install the Play Store and get going.

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  • Femi 2 weeks ago Link

    Hi Kris,

    I have a bit of an odd problem. I recently got the HTC One E8 (also known as M8Sw dual sim), but it strangely didn't come with any of the native Google apps - Play Store, Gmail, etc.
    I have downloaded and installed the APK for the Play Store, but the app never loads. So i went ahead to download the APK for Google Services, installed and now i keep getting this pop up message saying "Unfortunately, Google Play services has stopped".
    The Gmail app i downloaded and installed also doesn't work.
    The native OS is Chinese, the phone was purchased from China on my recent visit there.
    What can i do to successfully load all the Google apps and possibly also remove all the Chinese stuff still encoded in the device OS?

    Femi

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      Kris Carlon 2 weeks ago Link

      Hi Ferni, as far as I'm aware the E8 is not yet planned for international release, so it's not a simple matter of flashing the international firmware (which would include Gapps). If an int'l version does appear you can simply take that route.

      In the meantime you can try flashing the Gapps package through recovery. You just need to get the right Gapps for your Android version number (which I'm assuming is 4.4.2?) and flash it. If you have no idea what I'm talking about let me know and I'll explain in more detail ;)

      If you want to remove the Chinese content pre-loaded you'll need to root the phone and delete it that way. I haven't heard of a root exploit for the E8 yet though, but you could try towelroot (as long as the build date of your kernel (in Settings > About Phone) isn't later than June 3rd).

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  • Femi 2 weeks ago Link

    Hello Kris, thanks for the reply.

    In my bid to get the E8 up and running, here's what i've done so far:
    Tried unlocking bootloader and rooting following the details in link below:
    http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2699065
    I think the bootloader unlock was successful, but doubt the rooting was. Reason i doubt rooting was successful is because i got to install Titanium Backup and the app gave a warning saying root access was still unavailable.

    I would like to start the whole process maybe on a clean slate, if possible, or simply just get root access for sure.

    Kindly share with me details of how to flash GApps package through recovery, and yes, i have KK 4.4.2 on my device.

    Would also love steps/guide to get to root please.

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      Kris Carlon 2 weeks ago Link

      Hi @Ferni, you can simply install an app from the Play Store called Root Checker to see if you got root successfully or not.

      To get the Gapps package you want, just take a look on XDA. There's lots of different versions available, so jsut pick the one you want (ie. some only have the bare bones Google apps, others include Gmail, YouTube, Maps etc) and get the one for 4.4.2. Just download it to your device.

      To flash it, just turn your phone off and press and hold Power and Volume Down to enter the Fastboot menu, then use the volume buttons to highlight Recovery Mode and press power to confirm. Then select install zip (or however it is worded) and find the Gapps package you downloaded. Hit power to confirm and that should be it.

      Depending on how ''restricted'' the device is it may not work, but this is a good first try. Sometimes just installing the Play Store will automatically pull Play Services. If the APK won't install make sure you have Unknown Sources checked off in the security settings of your phone.

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      • Femi 2 weeks ago Link

        Hi Kris, thanks for the feedback.
        I did forget to mention that i got the phone from China, so it doesn't come with any of the Google Apps applications, so no play store, which is why i am trying to install Google Apps in the first place. All i have is an HTC Marketplace which is littered with Chinese only apps, and other apps are translated into Chinese, making it difficult to make sense of most of my search results there.

        For the Recovery Mode procedure you stated, i am unable to get to the point where i will be asked to select the zip file i wish to install.

        So i do have this dilemma now, what more to do? I have searched through xda and still reading up stuff, but my issue is the time spent to filter through so much info to apply to my particular situation.

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        Kris Carlon 2 weeks ago Link

        Ah, of course! You have stock recovery, my bad. When you select Recovery Mode you'll see the Android. Press volume up to get to the recovery menu. Because you don't have custom recovery you don't have the option to flash zips from SD card, so you'll have to do it via an ADB command. To avoid this post becoming a million miles long, you could search YouTube for the process as it is pretty straightforward but a little involved.

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  • Femi 2 weeks ago Link

    Hi Kris, Thanks for all your feedback. Could you just help with a recommended youtube link please? i am so tired right now, i think i'm beginning to go crazy! i've been at this for the last 6 hours straight!

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      Kris Carlon 2 weeks ago Link

      You just need to install ADB Tools on your PC and enable USB Debugging on your phone. You can see those instructions (for an unrelated issue) in this article: http://www.androidpit.com/how-to-record-screen-on-a-nexus-5

      Just read the first paragraph under ''What you need'' - there's also a video about installing the Android SDK but you only need to download the ADB Tools which we have a link for in the article). Then you download the Gapps package/Play Store APK and enter ADB commands to push them to your phone. Here's a decent walkthrough from XDA (it's old though, so you'll need to get the current Gapps etc): http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=992242

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      • Femi 2 weeks ago Link

        Hi Kris, Thanks again for the links. I got to download ADB, followed the second link on xda, but couldn't go beyond step 2.2 with the following commands:
        adb shell mount -o remount,rw /dev/block/mmcblk0p5 /system
        adb push [the path to your SDK tools folder]\system system/
        adb reboot

        First command fails, while for the second, i do not know what folder is being referred to. I tried reading through the entire post, but no guide or pointers as to what may be wrong.

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      • Femi 2 weeks ago Link

        I think i may have messed up with the stock bootloader because every time the phone reboots, it boots up into the bootloader. So if the install doesn't complete before reboot, its lost as i have to manually then reboot the phone.
        When i try to factory reset, its same thing. the reset process starts but when the phone reboots, it just goes into bootloader where i can only shutdown the phone or reboot. either options will not complete the process and return the phone back to the way it was before i did the initial reboot.
        I am trying to find a way to fix this...

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        Kris Carlon 1 week ago Link

        You can always flash stock firmware again. That should fix the boot loop issue. Then you can factory reset again and clear the cache partition to avoid any other bugs occurring. Good luck!

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      • Femi 1 week ago Link

        Hi Kris, thats exactly what i did and all is fine now. Thanks again for all your help.

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        Kris Carlon 1 week ago Link

        Excellent, glad we got there in the end @Ferni!

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  • Alexx Alexx 1 week ago Link

    Hi Kris...i accidentaly delete play store on my Allview A4 Duo (Micromax a58 Bolt) and i downloaded latest version from androidpolice. When i try to instal , appear the message "App not instaled"
    Thanks.

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      Kris Carlon 1 week ago Link

      Have you made sure you have ''Unknown Sources'' enabled? Go to settings > About phone and tap on Build Number until the notification pops up. Then back up to settings again and you'll find Developer Options in your menu. Just check the box for Unknown Sources (and don't forget to uncheck it once you've installed the APK).

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  • Alexx Alexx 1 week ago Link

    Yes i have it enabled..but when in tap on Instal..wait some second and appear "App not instaled".

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      Kris Carlon 1 week ago Link

      Try downloading the APK from a different link on Android Police. Sometimes I get weird download links that don't work. The dead giveaway is when the APK downloads in two seconds.

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  • Alexx Alexx 1 week ago Link

    Thanks. You save my device :D
    But now...when i run Play Store appear : Play Store was stopped.

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      Kris Carlon 1 week ago Link

      Happy to help @Alexx! You can try clearing the cache for starters. Settings > Apps > go to Running tab and look for Google Play Store. If that doesn't work you can try the other steps in this article: www.androidpit.com/google-play-not-working

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