How to download APK files to Kindle Fire HD
Unless you are brave enough to root your Kindle Fire HD, you are limited to the Amazon App Store. In all fairness, the Amazon App Store is decent enough and the range of apps available is growing quite rapidly. However, the Google Play store is the default location for developers to distribute their apps so is the most comprehensive source of apps. There is bound to be an occasion where the app you need is only available through the Google Play store. So, given you can’t install directly from Play, what do you do to download APK files to Kindle Fire HD?
Installing an app to your Kindle Fire HD is pretty simple. First, set the Kindle to allow installation of apps from unknown sources (in other words anywhere else but the Amazon App Store). Do this by swiping down the status bar, tap “more”, tap “device” and “allow installation of applications”).
Now, the challenging bit is to obtain the actual installation file for the app you are interested in (called an APK file). You can’t do this directly from an app store. Here are the two methods that I have found to be the most reliable/safest when download APK files to Kindle Fire HD:
1) Ask the developer to let you have the APK file.
2) Use TorrAPK.com which is a website that makes available the APK files for free apps on Google Play (they don’t list paid for apps). If there is an app on Google that they don’t have listed, just fill out the request for and the good folk at TorrAPK for load it up for you in a couple of days. An alternative is APKdad.com.
Once you have the APK file, you’ll need to get it onto your Kindle Fire HD. If you have downloaded directly to your Kindle over the internet, it’ll probably be in the Download Folder where you can just tap it and it’ll install. If you have downloaded it to your PC, you’ll need to transfer it across to your Kindle via USB. To view your Kindle’s folder structure, just use a file management program like ES File Explorer.
When downloading APK files to Kindle Fire HD you’ll probably be very tempted to install Google apps on Kindle Fire HD such as Google Maps, Gmail, etc. There is a post over at CNET which explains how to do this along with download locations for the necessary APK files. These apps are mostly compatible with the Kindle Fire HD, but you may need to uninstall Gmail if you get an issue with your Kindle’s status bar disappearing periodically.
If you come across other sources of APK downloads, please leave a message below.