What Android apps does Jolla support and how do I get them?

Jukka Romu -

Jolla aims to be compatible with the majority of Android apps, but due to the sheer volume of Android applications designed for Android-based devices with different configurations, we cannot guarantee 100% compatibility.

In this article you will learn how to make the best of the AndroidTM support on your Jolla.

 
CONTENTS

1 Installing Android applications on your Jolla

1.1 Installing applications from application stores

Note regarding the Google Play Store

Not finding the Android apps you need?

1.2 Installing applications from .apk files

2 Known limitations to AndroidTM support

3 Troubleshooting / FAQ

1 Installing Android applications on your Jolla

Installing Android applications is done via application stores and via .apk files.

Before installing any Android apps one must install AndroidTM Support which is available in the Jolla Store.

1.1 Installing applications from application stores

The SailfishOS operating system of Jolla supports Android apps that are featured in the Jolla Store and in Jolla-certified app partner stores (now Anzhi, Aptoide, F-Droid and Yandex).

There are also numerous other perfectly legitimate Android app stores (see examples below), some of which we have tried out, and it is possible to download these stores to Jolla and install apps from there.

Some example appstores:

To read more about using the Aptoide appstore, please see here.

To read more about using the Yandex appstore, please see here.

Note regarding the Google Play Store

Sailfish OS does not support Google Play store, because it relies on Google's proprietary background services only found on Android devices running Google's Android. We always advise against installing Google Services on SailfishOS, as it is known to potentially cause a multitude of problems ranging from serious to trivial.

Applications that report that they require Google Play Services may work entirely or partially regardless of the error. Most often applications use the services to sync data from your device to Google's servers.

 

Not finding the Android apps you need?

Have a look at Aptoide's "Search other stores" function here.

01_search-in-aptoide_ENG.png

This feature allows you to search for applications not immediately visible in Aptoide's search results.

 

1.2 Installing applications from .apk files

Android applications are installed from files with the extension ".apk". Once you point your Jolla to such a file, it is possible to install the Android application from this file.

Please note that installing from .apk files is not possible until the first Android application has been installed from the Jolla Store.

Downloading with the Browser

You can web search via the Jolla browser for the app you are interested in and if you find the application's .apk file, you can download it, and then install it in Transfers. To learn how to quickly go to Transfers from the Browser, please have a look here.

Transfers can also be found in Settings > Transfers.

Once you see the list of downloaded files, tap on the file to begin installing it.

Using File Manager

Another option to install .apk files is to first copy them to your device (e.g. to the Downloads folder) and then use the File manager application (Settings > Storage) to install the file/application (tap the .apk file in File manager). To transfer files between your PC and your Jolla please see here.

Installing via Email

The third way is to send an .apk file attached to an email message. Once you receive the email with the attachment, simply tap on the attachment to download and install it.

2 Known limitations to AndroidTM support

As mentioned before, we cannot ensure 100% compatibility of Android apps with Sailfish OS. It is also possible that certain features of Android applications are not supported. Such frequently asked about features include:

  • Reading any other information besides contacts information on your device, e.g. doesn't read or react to SMS messages' content, can't read calendar data
  • Utilizing Bluetooth connections for any other purpose other than streaming music to a Bluetooth headset or speakers

 

3 Troubleshooting /FAQ

Q: I'm having trouble finding all the Android apps I need. How can I get these apps?

A: You an download the Anzhi, Aptoide, F-Droid and Yandex application stores from the Jolla Store. Aptoide has perhaps the biggest offering of applications. You may find what you are looking for by using Aptoide's "Search Other Stores" function. To learn how to use it, please see here.

To read more about using the Aptoide appstore in general, please see here.

To read more about using the Yandex appstore, please see here.

Q: I'm having troubles installing an application from an .apk, what can I do?

A: If you are having troubles installing applications from .apk files, please follow the steps below:

1. Ensure that you have AndroidTM support installed from the Jolla Store. Install if missing.
2. Download and install any Android application from the Jolla Store. This mandatory step will initialize the AndroidTM support of your device so that it will be possible to install .apk files.
3. Attempt installation of file again.

If this step didn't solve your problem, please keep reading:

4. Attempt installing another application from .apk

If you are successful in installing another application from .apk, it is likely that your .apk file is corrupted. Please try to obtain the file again from another source.

Q: I'm having troubles with running Android apps, what can I do?

If some of your Android apps fail to launch or tend to crash, then it is worth while trying to restart the AndroidTM support of your Jolla. Restarting Android service ends all processes related to it, and after this starts them up again.

In order to do this, go to Settings > AndroidTM support and stop the AndroidTM support by tapping the "Stop" busson and then restart if by tapping "Start" button.

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