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How to install apps on Android devices

Android devices are a different beast from Apple’s iPhones. This is mostly due to the fact that Android devices aren’t tied into a service like iTunes and the App Store. Instead, these devices use the Google Play app marketplace, or proprietary marketplaces like the Amazon app store on Kindle Fires.

With this how-to we’ll help you learn how to download and install apps using Google Play. You will need a device with Wi-Fi, 3G, or 4G access.

1. Access to Google Play is provided via a pre-installed app on your Android phone. Turn on the phone and unlock it. You will see the Android homescreen. Towards the bottom of the screen you should see a little tab or grid icon. Tap the icon, which opens a new view showing all the apps that are on the device.

2. Find the pictograph that is labeled “Play Store”. Generally this icon a white handbag on it with the Google Play triangle logo. Tap the icon for it to load up.

3. Browse and search for apps that you’d like to install. For this example, let’s grab a free app, like the original Angry Birds.

4. Once you’ve selected an app for download tap the app of choice to view details like the description, rating, and the number of downloads by other users. At the bottom you should see a button labeled “Install.” A list of device functions that the app needs to access in order to function properly will pop up. Confirm the install with another tap and the download and install process will begin.

Depending on the size of the app it may take a few minutes to download. Once it’s finished the app is officially installed.

5. If you go back into the app grid, your new app will be there. Launch it and start playing.

Note: You can find a list of all the apps that you’ve downloaded by going into the Android Market app and finding the “My Downloads” section. 

Looking for more tips and tricks to help you master your new Android device? Also check out How to uninstall or delete apps from an Android Device.

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