Although Google has now decided to push out Android App support for Chromebooks, there may still be some users using a Chromebook today. This post is aimed at those very users who own a Chromebook and want to use Android Apps right now. Although the process isn’t tough, it can prove to be time consuming. Once you get the hang of it, it’s a piece of cake.
Downloading the App Runtime
However technical “downloading App Runtime” sounds, it isn’t. All you need to do is download any one app out of Evernote, Duolingo, Vine and Sight Words. As each of these apps already contains the App Runtime, you don’t need to install it manually or seperately.
Downloading the APK
An APK is basically a raw Android app which can be installed externally, that is, without the help of the Play Store. All you need to do is Google the app you want with the term APK.
For example, if you want the app Slack, Google “Slack APK.” You’ll be greeted with a plethora of websites. Use your judgement and download from a legitimate site.Now that you have the APK, we can proceed to the next step.
Repackaging the APK
This step will require a Windows/Linux PC or a Mac, because ChromeOS doesn’t support the repackaging software we’re going to use.
Head over to nodejs.org and grab the latest version according to the operating system you’re on.Load up node js and type the following command:
npm install chromeos-apk -g
Now, we’re going to jump to the directory your APK is in. For example, our “Slack.apk” file is in the f directory. Yours could be in the D directory or even a pendrive. Just type in the exact location of the directory using a file explorer followed by the “:” symbol. Run the following command:
Launching the APK as an App
Head over to the Extensions option in your browser on the Chromebook. Under Extensions, enable the Developer Mode.
Now, click on the option that says Load Unpacked Extention.Just transfer the repackaged APK to your Chromebook and you’ll now be able to see the app as an extention right there.
That’s it. Following these very steps each time, you can use almost all of your favourite Android apps on your ChromeOS powered Chromebook.