How to Move APK Files From a PC to an Android Phone

By Mandy Slake

Phones that use the Android operating system from Google can install applications from the Android Market, but not all applications are available on the Market. You can install third-party apps on your Android device by transferring the relevant .apk file into the phone using the USB cable that came with the phone. Once you have copied the .apk files to the phone, you can use a file-manager application to open the file and install the program. An APK, or .apk, file is an Android package file, used for bundling app software packages.

Step 1

Plug the USB data cable into the charging port on your Android phone.

Step 2

Plug the other end of the cable into a USB port on your PC.

Step 3

Touch the notifications bar at the top of the screen on the Android phone and drag it down.

Step 4

Touch "USB connection" and tap "USB Mass Storage."

Step 5

Tap "OK" to save the setting.

Step 6

Click the "Start" button on the Windows task bar and select "Computer." The Android device will appear as a drive under "Devices with removable storage."

Step 7

Click the Android drive and right-click on an empty area.

Step 8

Click "New Folder" and type a name for the folder, then press the "Enter" key. This is so you can navigate to folder that contains the .apk files from within your file manager application.

Step 9

Drag and drop the .apk files into the folder to move them into your Android phone.

Step 10

Disconnect the Android device from the USB cable.

Tips & Warnings

  • Some Android devices come with their own file-manager programs. If yours doesn't, choose one of the file managers available on the Android Market. Tap "Market" from the applications screen and search for the term "file manager."
  • To install third-party .apk files, you must enable a setting in the phone. Press the "Menu" key from the phone's main screen and touch "Settings." Tap "Applications" and check the box next to "Unknown sources." The phone will display a message warning you about the risks of installing non-Market applications. Touch "OK" to accept.