How to Sideload Apps on Android TV Box like Mi Box or Nvidia Shield TV.
Your Android TV like Mi Box or Nvidia Shield TV comes from the Google Play Store. And that’s not bad. However, it only features applications optimized for the TV interface. But there are times when you need to download unpublished apps to Android TV. For example, the other day I wanted to install a VPN app on my Shield TV box so I could watch American Netflix, but I couldn’t find it on the Android TV store.
It turns out that there are several ways to download unpublished apps on Android TV, depending on whether you have a Pendrive, a smartphone, Wi-Fi, or none. Each method has its own pros and cons. Let’s check them out. And we?
Most downloaded unpublished apps will not show up in your own launcher, so make sure you are using the sideload launcher or any Android TV launcher that supports downloaded unpublished apps.
Sideload apps on Android TV
Method 1. Using a USB flash drive
The most convenient way to download applications to your streaming device is to use flash drives. The most popular Android TV box like the Mi box and Nvidia Shield TV comes with a USB port. So, if you have a spare flash drive nearby, you can copy the APKs from your computer or if you are using Android, you first need to download any backup app like Apk Extractor from the Google Play store to extract the apk installed application. After you upload the file to your USB drive, remove the flash drive from your smartphone / computer and connect it to your Android TV box. After that, use any Android TV file manager like File Commander to navigate to the USB stick and install it.
Since Amazon Firestick is also based on Android OS, this trick works there, however, you need to buy a 3-way OTG splitter to access the stick, which is a problem.
- Ease of use
- Doesn’t require Wi- Fi
- I , if there is no flash drive nearby, it won’t work.
Method 2. Using Google Drive
The previous method was a little awkward as it required both a USB OTG adapter (since most phones have a Type C port) and a flash drive. If you don’t have access to them, you can also use cloud services like Google Drive to transfer APKs from your phone or computer to an Android streaming device like Firestick or Android TV
Start by downloading the apk from APKMirror to your phone or PC. We recommend APKMirror because it is released by the reputable Android Police and is malware-free. Although it is filled with a lot of Google Ads, finding the download you want is still a little confusing.
After downloading the apk, upload it to your Google Drive account and go to your streaming device. Open File Commander or any other cloud-enabled file manager and log into the same Google account that has the Apks files. D download and set them.
No hardware required
- While this may sound simple, it is too much work
Method 3. Wi-Fi Transfer
Since Android TV or even Fire Stick is already always connected to the internet, it makes sense to use Wi-Fi to transfer Apk and install them. So, in order to get this job done, you first need to install the WiFi transfer app on your Android TV. The app has a file size limit of 50MB in the free version, which shouldn’t be a problem since most apks are smaller than that, however you can remove it by updating to paid app for $ 0.99.
Use the previous two methods to set the WiFi file transfer feature on your device. Then open the app which will show you the IP address. You can enter this IP on your computer or Android phone browser and then just drag the apk files here. You can now transfer files from your phone and install them. Of course, you can also transfer large files such as movies using this application.
If your TV stick is on, you can use the Easy Fire tools app to transfer apps installed on your phone or APK files directly to your stick. It works in the same way as the previous one, however, you don’t need to install the companion app on your TV as you did with Wi-Fi transferring files.
- Ease of use
- No hardware required
- Long-term efficiency
- Wi-Fi required.
- Boost your phone storage and streaming.
Method 4. Use the Android TV browser
You may already know that you can access the Internet on Android TV using web browsers such as Puffin TV. So why not use it to download apps to your Android TV? Just open Puffin TV and go to ApkMirror, do a quick search for the apps you want to download and you will be able to download the apk after battling the adware on the website.
- Ease of Use
- Time Saving
- Intrusive Ads
Method 5. Use Aptoide TV
Even after the Play Store hit Android TV and the Amazon Store on the Fire TV Stick, the app available for these devices is quite normal as most apps aren’t fully optimized. However, these non-optimized apps work great (like the Wi-Fi file transfer we use in method # 3) on Android TV. Discover Aptoide TV, an alternative Play Store for Android TV, and Firestick.
To access non-optimized Android apps on your Android TV, you can use the Aptoide TV store. Yes, this store is capable of being called a competitor in order to play a store in the television ecosystem. Use any of the described methods to install Aptoide TV apk and open it. Once inside, you can now download and install apps that weren’t initially available in the play store but are good enough to be on an Android TV. The only downside to this store is that it has all sorts of apps without any recommendation.
- Effective for a long time
- Some applications are pirated.
If we’re missing out on the best way to download apps on Android TV, share it in the comments below.
How to Sideload Apps on Android TV Box like Mi Box or Nvidia Shield TV