The Kindle Fire is an awesome little tablet. It's cheap, easy to use, compatible with most Android apps, and heavily subsidized by Amazon. Newer versions even come with Alexa capability. If you're a new owner and want to add or remove apps, remove bloatware, or just tune your tablet to your liking, here's how to install and uninstall apps on the Kindle Fire.
All new devices come with bloatware and Kindle Fire. Bloat is a set of "useful" software installed by the manufacturer that they think you might use. In reality, it's usually useless software that's designed to sell other programs or is so bad that it's useless. While storage isn't exactly short on the Kindle Fire, deleting any apps you no longer need makes the tablet feel a bit more personal.
How to Install Apps on the Kindle Fire
You have two ways to install apps on the Kindle Fire. You can use the official Amazon Appstore or install your own. I'll show you how to do both. As Fire OS is based on Android, some standard Android apps will work fine on your Kindle Fire even if they are not available on Amazon.
To install apps from the Amazon Appstore:
- Visit the Amazon Appstore on your Kindle Fire.
- Find an app and buy or select Now get.
- Select the app from your homepage or from inside My apps on your Kindle Fire.
When you search for an application, you can see Buy now if the application costs money, Now get if the application is free, or Download if you have already purchased the app. They all do the same thing, download the app on your device and install it.
To sideload Google Play apps on your Kindle Fire, you will need a few software tools, ADB (Android Debug Bridge) and Supertool. For the purposes of this tutorial, they were installed on a Windows PC, so we'll describe that method here. Mac and Linux versions are also available.
To use Google Play to install apps on the Kindle Fire:
- Open your Kindle Fire and select Parameters.
- Now select Safety.
- To toggle Apps from unknown sources sure.
- Then select Device options in the Settings menu.
- Tap Serial number 7 times to activate Developer mode.
- Select Enable ADB in the new option that appears below Serial number.
- Download BAD from there, then unzip and place the folder somewhere on your PC.
- Now right click on This PC and select Properties.
- Select Advanced system settings in the right menu.
- Select Environment variables… at the bottom of the window that appears.
- Then select Path in System variables then select Edit.
- From there select New and paste the full path of the folder where you placed the unzipped ADB folder. For example, 'C:ADB'.
- Next, connect your Kindle Fire to your PC with a USB cable.
- Download Supertool from here.
- Extract the contents of the SuperTool.zip file to its own folder on your PC.
- Launch the batch file named '1-Install-Play-Store' in the SuperTool folder.
- Type 1 for Installation of the pilot ADB in the menu that appears and press Enter.
- Type 2 for ADB Driver Test and hit Enter to make sure ADB is working.
- Type 2 for Install Google Play Store and remove ads from lock screen.
- Type 3 to Block OTA updates from Amazon. This will prevent Amazon from overwriting your new settings.
- Restart your Kindle Fire.
Once started, you can access Google Play from your Kindle Fire. When you first open it or download your first app you will be prompted to install Google Play Services, you will need to do this for everything to work.
How to Uninstall Apps on the Kindle Fire
Uninstalling apps is a simple matter of selecting them and selecting Remove from device.
- Open your Kindle Fire and select an app.
- Press and hold the app icon until a pop-up window appears.
- Select Remove from Device to uninstall.
- Confirm your selection by selecting Okay.
If you want to remove bloatware from your Kindle Fire, we have to use ADB again.
- Connect your Kindle Fire to your PC via USB.
- Open Windows Explorer to the folder where you installed ADB.
- hold Change and right-click any empty space in that folder.
- Select Open command line windows here.
- Type 'adb devices' and press Enter to check connectivity. You should see your tablet appear in the list.
As long as your Kindle Fire appears in this list, you can remove bloating now. Below is a list of installed apps that you might want to remove. You will need to type or paste each line individually and press Enter after each for it to work. You can choose what you delete based on your needs.
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.parentalcontrols
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.kindle.kso
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.android.calendar
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.photos
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.kindle
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.android.email
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.android.music
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.goodreads.kindle
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.kindle.personal_video
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.geo.client.maps
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.cloud9.systembrowserprovider
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.cloud9
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.csapp
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.weather
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.ags.app
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.h2settingsfortablet
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.android.contacts
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 amazon.alexa.tablet
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.kindle.kso
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.audible.application.kindle
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.mp3
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.tahoe
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.photos.importer
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.zico
- adb shell pm uninstall -k –user 0 com.amazon.dee.app
Remember to type or paste each line individually and press Enter every time for these to work.
Notes: There is a double dash, – -, with no space in between, in front of the user. The font used on this site converts it to a long dash, which has caused some confusion. Also, if the above command doesn't work, try it without the -k option. Users have reported success with and without.
Apps and the Kindle Fire
Here's how to install and uninstall apps on the Kindle Fire. Now you know how to add apps through Amazon Appstore and Google Play Store. You also know how to delete applications, whether normal or integrated with Amazon. Hope that helps!
Were you able to install or remove the apps you wanted? Is the bloatware included on your Kindle Fire becoming too much? Share your experiences below.