Devices without Google Play

Several features on OpenSongApp require access to Google Play Services. If your device has the Google Play Store installed, these will automatically be available.

Amazon Fire devices and other devices in certain countries do not have access to the Google Play Store by default. All hope is not lost - you can install these! Read on if you are interested.

Features affected if you do not have Google Play Services/Play Store

  • Google Cast: Required if you want to remotely project your song lyrics/chords using a wireless display device such as Chromecast.

  • Google Fonts: Required if you want to change the default font used in the app. Google Fonts gives access to hundreds of free fonts.

  • Google Nearby: Required if you want to connect your device to another user's device. This is used to synchronise the display of songs using a host/client method.


Installing the Google Play Services and Google Play Store

You complete the following steps at your own risk. Should your device stop working, you may be able to fix it by performing a factory reset. I take no responsibility for any loss/damage/etc. That said, I have followed these steps on my Amazon Fire HD7 device without issue and now have access to all the apps on the Google Play Store.

You can watch a video from 'Android Police' below showing the process and you can also read their excellent guide (which I based mine on) here.

My version of the instruction are below. Use at your own risk!

Step 1: Allow your device to install files from 'unknown' locations

During this process you will install 'apk' files that are packaged android files. Since you will be doing this manually (not using your built in app store), you need to give permission for this feature. Usually you'll find this by opening up your device's settings menu and then selecting the security/privacy option. Look for a button to allow installing files from unknown locations.

Step 2: Download the following files (from APK mirror)

Download the four files listed below (Google Account Manager, Google Services Framework, Google Play Services, Google Play Store).

The version of the file you need to download depends on your device. If you are unsure of your device, you can find it in the device's 'Settings' > 'About device' or 'Device Options' page. Because different devices are based on different versions of Android, if you use the wrong file, they likely won't install (or won't work!). For Amazon devices you'll need the model (Fire HD10, Fire 7, etc.), the generation (7th, 8th, 9th, etc.) and the version of FireOS it runs (FireOS 5, 6, 7, etc.). You can find the version of FireOS by clicking on the 'Settings' > 'System Updates' button.

If your device has an SD card installed, where possible you should remove this before downloading/installing the files as it may cause issues later. Once you have completed these steps, you can reinsert your SD card.

These links are the most up to date available in Oct 2020. Once installed, they will update to the newest version.

(4) Google Play Store (com.android.vending)

Step 3: Install the files

Once the files have downloaded, you will need to navigate to your download folder. You can use a file browsing app (such as 'Docs' on Amazon Fire devices) to do this. Using the Amazon 'Docs' app, cick on Local Storage and then select 'Downloads'. For other file browsers, you should find the Downloads folder in the main storage location.

Navigate to your download folder and you should see the files you have downloaded. They will start with 'com.google' or 'com.android' and you can match them to the names in the links above.

It is important to install them in the order shown (the order you downloaded them) to minimise the apps crashing in the background due to missing the resources they need from each other. Apps 1 and 2 are quick to install (a few seconds), apps 3 and 4 take about a minute each (in case you think they have frozen!):

  1. Account manager: com.google.android.gsf.login

  2. Google Services Framework: com.google.android.gsf

  3. Google Play Services: com.google.android.gms

  4. Google Play Store: com.android.vending

When you install the file, you will see a security warning that lists the permission they require. The files are safe to install, but you do so at your own risk! After installation is complete, click on 'Done' not 'Open'.

Step 4: Update the Google Play Services files

Once the files have finished installing, they will likely need to update themselves. Before you do this, it is worthwhile rebooting your tablet. Hold the power button and select either 'Restart' or 'Power off'. Start the tablet up again (you'll need to do this manually if you selected 'Power off').

To allow the updates to happen, open the Google Play Store (the icon should now be on your desktop) and sign in with your Google account (or create a new, free one if you don't have one). Once the Play Store opens (it may take a few minutes to start up and install the required updates), you should be good to go. If you then see any warnings about Play Services requiring an update before they can be used, click on the warning to start the update process. Normally this happens automatically so you likely won't see this.

Step 5: Enjoy a fully functioning app

Once the updates have finished and you are able to browse the Google Play Store, you will now have access to the required files for full operation of OpenSongApp on your device. Restart the app to see the changes.