Kindle Fire tablets are some of the best, cheapest Android tablets around, but they’re limited to Amazon’s app store, which is more than lacking compared to the thousands of apps available on the Google Play Store. With a little tweaking, though, you can run any Android app on them. You can even get the entire Google Play Store on some devices.
What You’ll Need
Amazon’s Fire tablets are based on a de-Googled version of Android, but under the hood they’re still pretty similar. This makes it pretty easy to install Android apps on your tablet, but some ways are easier than others. We’re going to cover two ways to do this. Method #1 involves downloading Android APK installer files and installing them directly. Method #2 will install the entire Google Play Store, which you can use like you would on a normal Android phone. This method is a bit more complicated, but it will make it much easier to install any app you want. Plus it will give you the Google Play Services that you’ll need for most Google apps. Here’s what you’ll need for both methods:
- A Kindle Fire Tablet: For method #1, you can use any Kindle tablet. We tested this method on an old 2nd generation 7″ Kindle and it worked. For method #2, you’ll need a 4th generation Kindle Fire or higher that’s been updated to Fire OS 5.
- Android APKs (Method #1): If you want to install apps manually, you’ll need to get the APK from somewhere. APKs are files that Android uses to install apps, similar to .exe files in Windows. We’ll cover a few ways to get APKs, but if you have an Android phone that already has the app you want on your Fire tablet, it may come in handy.
- A Windows PC (Method #2): To install the Play Store on your device, you’ll need to connect it to a Windows PC with a USB-to-micro-USB cable. If your Kindle tablet didn’t come with one, you can get one from Monoprice here or from Amazon here.
- ADB (Method #2): ADB is a powerful tool in the Android developer kit that lets you run commands on an Android device from your computer. You can download a small version of the tool from XDA here and install it in just a couple clicks. We have a full step-by-step guide here you should follow first. Once you have ADB, come back.
- RootJunky’s SuperTool (Method #2): This tool will install the drivers you need on your computer to connect ADB to your tablet, then it will install the Google Play Store. If your Fire tablet is running Fire OS 5.3.1 or later, download the .zip file named Amazon-Fire-5th-Gen-Install-Play-Store.zip from here. If you’re on an older version, grab Amazon-Fire-5th-Gen-SuperTool-old.zip from here. If you’re not sure which version you’re on, open the Settings app on the main screen of your Kindle, scroll to Device Options, and tap “System Updates.” Your version number should be at the top.