How to Install APK Files in Android Through ADB

The most common and the easiest way of installing apps in an Android device is through Google Play store. But sometimes we have to install apps from their APK files directly. For example, my bank offers mobile banking services using their Android app which is not available on Google Play store but can be downloaded as an APK file from the bank’s web site. Usually installing an app from the APK file involves many steps – download it on your PC, copy it to Android device, enabling installation from unknown sources and then proceeding with the installation by opening the APK file.

But if you have enabled the developer options in your Android device, then everything becomes extremely easy. You don’t even have to copy the APK file to your Android device. Everything is done right from your PC. Here is how:

  1. First of all you have to enable the developer options in your Android device and install the ADB in your Windows PC.
  2. Connect your Android device to your PC using a USB data cable. Open a command prompt window and issue the following command to see if the device is being detected (you should see the serial number for your device):
    adb devices
  3. Download the APK file belonging to an app that you want to install on your Android device. For example, you can download the APK file for WPS Office (Kingsoft Office) from their website at Install APK in Android
  4. When you have your APK file ready, you can give the following command to install the APK into your Android device (replace the APK file name with yours):
    adb install kingsoft_office_android.apk
  5. You will see a success message indicating that the APK has been sideloaded into your Android device. You can now check the Android device and launch the newly installed app.

Conclusion: Installing the apps from their APK files through the ADB bridge is extremely easy and allows you to install multiple apps quickly in a short time. For installing multiple apps, you can create a simple batch script that installs a number of APK files one after another.