One of these security features on your Android device is that you are not allowed to install apps from outside the official Play Store on your device. That means even if you have the application file in the format of APK, you will not be able to install it on your device – unless you have specifically told your device to allow that task.
There is a way to allow the installation of third party apk files without going through the Play store, though it will require some configuration on your part. If you run an APK on your device without first enabling the feature, you will see the following on your screen.
As you can see, it says your phone is set to block apps from “unknown sources.” The “unknown sources” term means anything other than the official Play Store. So, how do you go about overcoming this prompt and enabling the non-store apps to install on your device? That’s what we are going to explain in the following guide.
Note: Installing apps from unknown sources means that you are now responsible for your phone’s safety. Don’t ever install any app unless you are absolutely sure that it is not malware. One more thing, don’t ever download an APK file from unknown sources.
Installing Apps from Unknown Sources on an Android Device
To enable the option that allows installations of apps from unknown sources, you do not need a third-party app. You can enable and disable the feature right from the settings panel.
1. Open the App Drawer on your Android device, and tap on the “Settings” icon. It will open the settings panel where you can change all the settings related to your device.
Also, you can pull down the notification bar twice, and then tap on the gear icon to open the Settings menu.
2. When the Settings menu opens, scroll all the way down until you see an option saying “Security & fingerprint.” On the devices that do not have the fingerprint feature, you will only see the “Security” option. Tap on that option, and it will open the security settings menu for your device.
3. When the Security Settings menu launches, scroll down and you will see an option that says “Unknown sources.” This option is what controls whether apps from outside the Play Store should be allowed to install on your device. By default, the option is disabled.
Turn the toggle next to the option to the ON position, and the feature will be enabled on your device.
4. You will get the following prompt before the feature can be enabled on your device. It mentions the risks involved with installing apps from unknown sources. Tap on “OK” to enable the feature.
5. The feature should now be enabled on your device, and you may now exit out of the settings menu.
6. Now, tap on any APK file downloaded from anywhere on your device, and you should see that it installs without any issues. As long as the feature for unknown sources is enabled on your device, you will be able to install APKs without any issues on the device.
Getting an app in the APK format from your friend but not being able to install it on your Android device due to system restrictions is a big pain. The guide above helps you relieve the pain and teaches you how you can install apps from outside the Play Store on your device.