With the addition of ES File Explorer to the Fire TV and Fire TV Stick’s appstore, it is now possible to sideload apps like Kodi using nothing but your Fire TV or Fire TV Stick. You don’t need a computer, ADB, a utility like adbFire, or even a USB drive. You can do it all with just your Fire TV remote from the comfort of your couch. This guide will show you how to sideload Kodi, but can easily be adapted to work for any APK downloadable from a website.
Guide last updated: August 2, 2016
ES File Explorer can once again download APK files directly, without needing them to be zipped, using the built in download manager.
This guide has been updated to reflect these changes.
Note: This video is outdated and should only be used as a supplement to the written guide, not a replacement for the written guide.
- If you haven’t done so before, enable “Apps from Unknown Sources” on your Fire TV by following this guide.
- Install ES File Explorer for free from the Amazon Appstore. You can find it using the Fire TV’s search feature.
- Launch ES File Explorer when it finishes installing. If a tutorial or message appears when first launched, press the BACK button on your remote to dismiss it.
- Expand the “Tools” menu in the left column and select the “Download Manager” option.
- Press RIGHT on your remote and select “New” from the bottom of the screen.
- Enter the full URL to the APK file you want to install in the “Path” field, and any name you want in the “Name” field. Remember, this is the URL to the APK file and NOT the URL to the webpage that has the APK link.
For Kodi 16.1, which is currently the latest stable version, you can use the short URL:
This is in place of having to enter the full URL:
- Select the “Download Now” button and wait for the APK file to download.
- Select “Open file” when the file finishes downloading.
- Select “Install” to install the APK you just downloaded.
- Select the “Install” option.
- After the app installs, you’re done. You can launch it by selecting the “Open” option.
- Be sure to launch the app directly from the “App” section of your Fire TV at least once so it appears on your Home screen’s “Recent” list. If you still don’t see the app on your Home screen, follow this guide to make it appear.