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Android has no 'install' button on apk file

Asked: Aug 11 2022 | 11:13 am EDT 439 Views 12 Answers

I have 4 absolutely new, fresh out of the box, MDE devices, all with Android 8.1.0
None of them has or needs a Google Account, so I am trying to fix this without the Google Store. On all 4 of them I allowed Chrome and 'Files' to install apps from unknown sources.
ONE works without issues, THREE tell me 'can't open file' and are missing the 'install'-button in the 'Files' app. I do have an 'open with' button, but when I click it it says 'None of your apps can open this file'. I can however extract the apk-files, but that doesn't help accomplish anything.
After downloading the apk-file in Chrome I get an 'install'-question at the bottom, but when I click on it, it just throws me into the download-folder in which the file is and does nothing. If I click on the file it just says 'can't open file'.
I can't see any differences, I did the same steps on all 4 of them, used the same wifi, the same download-source, they all have the same standard apps, the same settings - I am clueless.

I already tried completely resetting one of the devices - 3 times - but the issue persists.
Of course I also already tried to find any solution in the internet, but I can't even find anyone who has exactly this issue.


More Answers

158,334
Aug 11 2022 | 12:53 pm EDT B. Diddy

Welcome to Android Central! There are a number of different apk files, and not all of them will automatically install. You may want to try a 3rd party apk installer app.

These 4 devices are all identical?

4
Aug 15 2022 | 3:00 am EDT Tician

Here I am, now with an account
Here are some pictures, was easier to make them with my phone so I can upload them right away. They are from one of the phones that doesn't let me install apk-files. All 4 devices are absolutely identical, they apk-files themselves are fine, we installed them hundreds of times. As I said, one didn't have any issues, 3 don't let me install any apk-file.
https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachmen...9/IMG_2379.jpg
https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachmen...7/IMG_2380.jpg
https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachmen...6/IMG_2381.jpg
https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachmen...3/IMG_2382.jpg
https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachmen...2/IMG_2383.jpg

80,527
Aug 15 2022 | 11:36 am EDT mustang7757

Here I am, now with an account
Here are some pictures, was easier to make them with my phone so I can upload them right away. They are from one of the phones that doesn't let me install apk-files. All 4 devices are absolutely identical, they apk-files themselves are fine, we installed them hundreds of times. As I said, one didn't have any issues, 3 don't let me install any apk-file.
https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachmen...9/IMG_2379.jpg
https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachmen...7/IMG_2380.jpg
https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachmen...6/IMG_2381.jpg
https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachmen...3/IMG_2382.jpg
https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachmen...2/IMG_2383.jpg
Welcome to AC!
How old are these devices and what Andriod version?

158,334
Aug 15 2022 | 12:34 pm EDT B. Diddy

Look at the model numbers for each device (in Settings>About Phone). Are they all exactly the same?

Are all devices fully up to date?

I made you the owner of the original guest post to make it easier for you to find.

4
Aug 16 2022 | 2:37 am EDT Tician

Unfortunately pictures are too large to directly insert, so here we go again
https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachmen...8/IMG_2385.jpg
https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachmen...9/IMG_2384.jpg
Pic 1: Apparently it's up to date, I already checked that beforehand
Pic 2: right is the one that works, left is one that doesn't work, as I said those are MDE devices, only difference is that I switched the left one to english so everyone can understand it

The devices are fresh out of the box, they arrived last week. Also no retail or something, they are completely new. Also not exactly cheap...

Here is picture 3 from the working device, it has the 'install' ('installieren') button for the file, which the others all don't have:
https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachmen...EC383387E2.jpg

Compared to what I already posted form a device that is missing it:
https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachmen...3/IMG_2382.jpg

Weird thing is it also doesn't show the icon of the app, it rather looks like it just recognizes the file as 'zip' file or something... just a thought.

158,334
Aug 16 2022 | 12:27 pm EDT B. Diddy

Really odd situation -- I'm not sure if there's much more I can suggest, besides contacting the manufacturer (but support from these off-brand or no-name Chinese companies will usually be minimal to zero).

Try a 3rd party app like APK Installer.

4
Aug 17 2022 | 3:27 am EDT Tician

I wanted to prevent having to create a google account - which as far as I know is the only option to get access to the App Store and install anything.

Anyway guys, I have news. I wanted to show my coworker the issue today and guess what? It worked. I did literally nothing, but I already thought it would work after taking the decive and saw that the icons of the apk-files changed to the ones they usually have instead of the zip-folder-something they had when it wasn't working.

I can only assume it is something that at some point had to 'load up' (I didn't even restart them) and took it's precious time to do so - but I am no expert - I really didn't even touch them and nobody else did.

So... problem solved I guess^^

2,783
Aug 17 2022 | 5:03 am EDT J Dubbs

I wanted to prevent having to create a google account - which as far as I know is the only option to get access to the App Store and install anything.

Anyway guys, I have news. I wanted to show my coworker the issue today and guess what? It worked. I did literally nothing, but I already thought it would work after taking the decive and saw that the icons of the apk-files changed to the ones they usually have instead of the zip-folder-something they had when it wasn't working.

I can only assume it is something that at some point had to 'load up' (I didn't even restart them) and took it's precious time to do so - but I am no expert - I really didn't even touch them and nobody else did.

So... problem solved I guess^^
The Magic of Android lol.