I am very excited to announce the latest version of my Downloader app for the Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. The big new feature of this 1.1.1 version is a built-in web browser. The browser allows you to easily navigate websites using the Fire TV remote without needing a mouse or keyboard. Downloading files is available through the browser so you no longer need to know the direct download URL to the file you want to download or the APK you want to install. You can just navigate to any website and click a download link to get the file you want.
Lon Seidman has created a great video showing off the new browser feature and how to use it to easily install Kodi. I’ve been a long time subscriber of Lon’s YouTube channel and I cannot recommend it enough. As Lon mentions in his video, by sheer serendipity, the first Fire TV I ever owned was originally his which he reviewed and sold to me afterwards.
Just like before, if you know the direct URL of a file you want to download, you can still enter it on the app’s home screen and download files that way. That is still the fastest way to install APKs, but the Downloader app now detects if a URL you enter leads to a web page and asks if you want to load the page in the built-in web browser. You can also open the browser directly from the menu on the left and enter URLs to open from there as well. For those who need it, I’ve updated my sideloading guide with step-by-step instructions for using either a direct URL or the new browser.
The built-in browser uses an on-screen cursor, that acts like a mouse pointer, to navigate around websites. You move the cursor around the screen with the circle direction buttons on the Fire TV remote and you click by pressing the center select button on the remote. If you move the cursor to the edge of a web page, it will automatically scroll in that direction, but you can also scroll up and down by pressing the fast forward and rewind buttons on the remote. Lastly, you can move back and forward through the history of pages you’ve visited using the back and play buttons on the remote.
Johannes Bramauer, the developer I’ve hired to help me with my Downloader app, did a great job with the new browser. The original intention of the browser was to just make it possible to download files from pages that don’t provide direct URLs to their files, like apkmirror.com and apkpure.com, but it works so well that I think it can even be used to just generally browse the web on your TV. I like using it enough that I’m planning to add favorites/bookmarks in the next version to save on the amount of typing that has to be done.
I’m really happy with the new version of Downloader and I hope everyone finds it even more useful than before. Being able to just browse to and click a download link, instead of having to know and type in the exact download URL of the APK file you want, should make sideloading even easier. Thank you to everyone who has donated through the donation buttons on the app’s home screen. It is completely thanks to your generosity that I am able to add new features like the browser, while still keeping the app 100% free without any ads. Please consider donating so that I can continue to add new features and improve the app. You can see a list of all the changes in this new version, as well as download the APK for sideloading on non-Fire TV devices, at AFTVnews.com/Downloader.
This is a game changer.
For the favorites and bookmarks: how about importing them from a text file you can sideload/download?
Even less typing.
Or, just storing them in a plain text file so you don’t need any import code, just sideload the starter config file?
Importing (and exporting) will absolutely be included when favorites get added to the app. I plan to allow importing via a local text file on the device or via a URL. When importing favorites from a URL, it won’t even need to be a downloadable file. For example, you’ll be able to just list URLs on Pastebin, like this, and import by entering the Pastebin URL.
When i play a stream through the web browser, is there a way to make the stream full screen? Thanks in advance.
I’m having a problem with the app..I have used it in the past but had to delete it and use another app instead..I don’t have the option under the settings tab concerning the java..only have *Downloader Folder and APK Auto install. .I belive there is a problem because I can’t dl any link…can you help?? THX U
I am having this issue as well have you ever received a solution!??
Same problem here. Is there a solution to this? Please advice.
I upgraded to the nvidia shield. Would ur app work on it?
I have not tried it on any Android TV devices yet, but I do want to look into getting it in the Google Play Store eventually. I want to add a few more features first before working on porting it over.
I also recently dumped My Fire TV and got a Nvidia Shield Pro 2017 model for about 40 bucks off the retail price. It would be excellent if you put that App out on here so I could use it and support you from there. My only complaint with that device at all is the remote.
After all these years of saying that a browser isn’t a good idea on the Fire TV, Elias, you have changed your tune.
I was kind of thinking the same thing :) When you are directly involved in building something I think can tend to change your opinion of it.
Haha, I’m definitely understanding now why so many people have asked me about browsers for the Fire TV. While adding the browser into the Downloader app, I never thought people would even consider using it to really browse the internet. It’s purpose was to strictly be a tool to get to otherwise inaccessible download links. But then, while testing the browser on various sites, I found myself actually using it to read articles and pulling up pages here and there when my phone wasn’t nearby.
Anyway, the main purpose of the browser is to download files, but I’m now not against adding features that make it a better general browser for surfing the web.
Good addition but does indeed need bookmarks /favourites, however as a general Web browser then it also needs the ability to go full screen
Agreed. Text size control/zooming and the ability to control if a mobile or desktop version (user agent switch) of a page is loaded would be good additions as well. I don’t think I’d add much more than that though.
Your response has prompted me to make a donation to further this development Elias!
Thanks Gareth. The focus of the app will still be downloading and sideloading, so browser improvements won’t be a priority right now. I’ll add favorites/bookmarks in the next update, but I’m not sure when the other browser improvements will come, since there are other features related to the app’s focus that will be added first. If that effects your decision to donate, I encourage you to request a refund from Amazon and reconsider donating once the other browser improvements are added.
It’s fine Elias :)
when I enter kodi.tv to browse to that works ok but when I click on download link nothing happens. browser won’t go to the download page. My device is fire tv box 2nd generation.
Can you tell me exactly which link you’re clicking and on which page? I haven’t had any trouble myself downloading Kodi from kodi.tv/download.
kodi.tv web page. While on that page click on the download link to go to the download page. The browser will not go to the download page. I like the new interface.
What software version is on your Fire TV 2? Which remote or game controller are you using? Does clicking on any links on that page or other pages work?
If you prefer, it may be easier to continue this over email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Clicking the downloads link on Kodi.tv works for me on all Fire TV models, so this is a bit tough to figure out, but I’ll definitely do more testing.
This maybe a stupid ? But here goes. Can I download AFTV downloader to my laptop? And how would that be done? Thank You, By the way I love this app, Thanks so much for making it for us.
Just download Appstarter. Screw the Kodi page and trying to download the ARM file. Input http://fs.box.li and download the file.
Whoops, typed wrong link. Apprently, theres no edit here.
I suspect the web browsing feature within Downloader is quickly going to become very popular. Elias are you planning on giving the browser its own name? (perhaps a viewer naming contest!)
Is there a trick to getting the app to update? I went into settings/my account/sync.
I had to uninstall then install the new version
Same here. I needed to uninstall, then reinstall. Weird way to update, but maybe the developer is still learning how to use amazon.
The Fire TV doesn’t seem to check for app updates regularly enough. As others said, uninstalling and reinstalling will definitely get you the latest version.
The app is great but the video from Lon Seidman doesn’t do much to negate the general narrative that Kodi is only used to view pirated content (streamed or torrent downloads). The video he is viewing is The Expanse ripped and published by SVA group. Grrrr. Puts a taint on the Downloader app as an enabler of pirates. It might be viewed as a small mistep but this is the kind of evidence that the content and copyright holders jump on.
Lon has made numerous videos about the proper/legal uses of Kodi. Since reviewing Downloader and showing how to use it to sideload was the subject of the video, and not Kodi itself, I think it was the right decision to not go into any details about Kodi. As for the file he briefly plays in the video, I do know he has an HDHomeRun with a cablecard and a cable subscription, which he has demonstrated numerous time in the past, so he certainly has the setup to legally DVR The Expanse for personal viewing. Obviously, it would have been ideal if he used a personal recording of the episode and not, what looks like, a downloaded version, but I feel he is ethically in the clear.
How about some way to make the browser full screen without the navigation bar on the left side?
I’ll definitely look into this.
“The Expanse” can be streamed legally from Syfi.com add-on from the main Kodi repository.
Elias as always Excellent Work sir
Thanks to Elias for his simple, yet extremely handy app. I made a leanback shortcut app for use on nVidia Shield, Mi Box & Nexus Player. All my app does is point to & open Elias’ app (which doesn’t show up on home screen). So, make sure you have both this and Elias’ Downloader app installed.
Downloader shortcut app for Android TV: https://drive.google.com/open?id=0BwxFVkl63-lEeE4xeVY5UzhESTg
Shortcut app made using http://atvlauncher.trekgonewild.de/
Cool. I do plan to submit the app into the Google Play Store in the future, but this should be helpful for Android TV users in the meantime. Thanks.
Two other suggestions. Pour a built in favorites/most used menu that comes with the browser ( not just ones we can create, links already there for the first or most popular stuff people need).
Also and more important, upload also. I need to edit my advanced settings.xml file on Jodie and my sources file ( special directories doesn’t always work) so the option to upload the files, locally edit and download would be great. Or even better, edit them on the fire tv itself, but that’s a lot more complex.
I won’t be adding any sort of “popular” or “suggested” links to the app because that would turn it into an appstore, which may get it removed from the Amazon Appstore. Once favorites are added, anyone will be able to create and share their own list of “top apps” that you can choose to import yourself if you’d like, but I won’t be providing any such lists in the app by default.
As for uploads, I do want to support more ways of getting files on (and off) of the Fire TV in the future.
I just love the mouse pointer inside the browser. I’m not sure if you can tweak the pointer to be a bit slower, it is a bit hard to pinpoint spots as the circle move around really quick.
I wish more applications for Firetv would implement this ability.
It would only let me push this to my FireTV devices, how hard would it be to get this app approved to also be able to install on Fire Tablets? This would be great to use on them to sideload apps also.
Thanks for including a browser in the updated app. I had to donate to show my appreciation. Keep up the good work.
One question how do I enter a website address in the browser ? I do see where I can add it in the “home” screen, but it’s not intuitive on the “browser” screen
Never mind, figured it out, just hit the center round button and the keyboard appears. Duh!
Great app, something the Fire TV needs to make it more user friendly in this regard. Sadly I dumped mine as I now live in a non-Amazon account country and, despite being subscribed to Amazon Prime Video (International version) I can’t watch media I’m legally subscribed to on an Amazon device!!! WTF!! How dumb is that. For Prime Video the LAST thing you want is an Amazon device. NVidia Shield – can, iPhone – can, laptop – can. Fire TV – no! Epic fail Amazon!!
And no, I don’t want to use a VPN (which of course includes the expense of paying for the service AND a DD-WRT router) just to use a device because Amazon can’t be bothered to pull their finger out.
People ask me about devices these days the absolute LAST device I suggest them getting unless they live in an Amazon account country is a Fire TV
Will the mouse function work on other apps or just this app like KODI? I already have a mouse for Fire TV remote installed, will this clash with your app?
The web browser feature is a quantum leap for the Downloader, I cannot wait to try it out.
You are right about the traditional Android web browser offerings, they do not work well because nobody thought about interfacing them to the Fire TV Remote.
Having a bookmarks feature will be the icing on the cake. Keep up the great work guys!
Suggestion for zip support not sure if it works or not but that would be cool to download a care package of apks on archive.org and download all in a zip and install all at once
This doesn’t have a search function in the browser to find the apk.. IF I have to type in the exact URL, its no better then the add function in ES file explorer. Did i miss the search somewhere? ES lets me manage my files better, especially if I do alot of downloads.
Hey i’m trying to make a tutorial on my website kodiguide. For that i need to install your Downloader app on a simple Android Box, but seems that i can’t find any links to download it there. Even tried to install Amazon Underground on the TV-Box but it doesn’t show up in the Search results. Can you place a direct download link on your website? That would be great. Thanks. By the way i create Kodi Tutorials, if you have any ideas i would like to feature your products on my YT channel and website. contact me.
Please can I test the apk file on my Nvidia shield tv…I tried it on a friends firestick and love it :)
Please share apk link :)
So I found the link to version 1.1.2 and tested it on the shield tv.
Bugs found are:
When downloaded an apk within the app it says “no app found to handle this file” so can’t install the apk.
APK-Auto-install not working (related to bug listed above)
When selecting the favourites menu on the left panel and selecting a favourite the app crashes.
I will test for more bugs…
Would be nice to be able to set the browser homepage to page of your choice also.
If the bugs could be fixed this would be a great universal downloaded app for all android devices :)
I got the new fire tv3 today and can’t seem to run apk to install kodi. It say app no app found to handle this file.hrlp please
Same here, it says no app found to handle this file when I click the install button
Also have the same issue, no app found to handle this file
Same issue with both 32 and 64 bit versions.
Same here on new fire tv3
You have to install es file manager and install through there from the file downloaded through downloader
Can you give more specifics about how to do this? Thanks!
Download the apps with downloader then go to the download folder in local storage in es and install them through there
Your fix works! Thankyou
Briliant, thank you.
And another with the new FireTv “no app found to handle this file”
Ok the Downloader app doesn’t appear to be able to install apks. Not sure why. So download es file manager and run it.
On the far left, go to Local, then Internal storage, then open the Downloader folder. You will see your kodi-17.5.1-Krypton-armeabi-v7a.apk file. Click it and select install.
After it installs, select Open. Voila.
One note, I selected add apps in the beginning and it fubar’d everything. There were no apps listed for “Your apps”. Had to factory reset. Works fine now. FYI in case someone else runs up against this.
You are awesome! Worked perfectly!
You’re awesome. Thank you!
THANK YOU, Rob!
I’ve been using the Durex Build for a long while and it’s my one-stop shop. I have no ties to the creators, but it is a damn sight better than downloading add on after add on. Here’s how to do it:
After you’ve allowed unknown sources, go to the file manager and add source. http://drxbld.com/wiz. Below that, rename it .durex (the . will make it show up at the top of the list).
Go back to Kodi’s home. Go to add ons. Go to the little box icon on the top left of the screen. Install from ZIP. Go to .durex and chose the wizard option. Run the wizard. Give it a minute or 2. When it’s done, just click continue and BUILD MENU. This should set you in the right place. If it glitches (and it sometimes does), go to Add-Ons > Program Add-Ons and re-run the wizard. You want build 17.3 (6.32) (yes it’s .2 below the 17.5 available now, but it works).
Click that and select standard install. It’s 382MB or so so let it do it’s job. Then when it’s finished force close the app. Reopen and voila. All the goodness in a nice package. I also run this on my non-rooted android phone. Works great!
Oh and you’re welcome! Happy t help!
AH! ONE last thing. If you install ES Explorer, that stupid program will install a “logger floating widget”-a tiny circle howing a tiny picture of the last thing you clicked.
To TURN IT OFF: Open ES Explorer. Click Settings on the top left. Go down to “Logger floating widget settings” and click it. Click to uncheck “ENable logger floating widget”.
Sorry. For anyone who installed es explorer, you’re probably thinking, “What fresh Hell is THIS?” :)
But there you go. Pretty painless.
Can someone please advise. Trying to install downloader but when I click on it I get a pop up that says the app that you are looking for could not be found. Any help
In this matter would be great. Thanks!
In my setting on the downloader app it doesn’t give me the option for java enables. It only has download folder and all auto install what can i do for this!!??
Same problem here. Is there a solution to this? Please advice.