Chrome OS 80 won’t need Developer Mod, may sideload apps soon

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Chrome OS 80

Chrome OS now supports Android apps but with some limits. Not all mobile apps from the Google Play Store can run on Chrome. At least, the OS is one step ahead but it may take some time or a lot of tweaking for most apps to work without any kinks. There is a quick solution though—sideloading of APKs like you would on Android smartphones. The thing is, only Chromebooks in Developer Mode and the developers can take advantage of them.

Like Android, Chromebooks allow Android APK sideloading. It’s a tool for testing apps without passing through the Play Store. For Chromebooks, they must be in Developer Mode. That sounds ideal but it could open the system and may require wipes.

Sideloading Android apps without Developer Mode is possible. It’s something we mentioned a couple of months ago. Chrome OS would add sideloading of Android apps to Chromebooks.

Chrome OS 80 is now ready and it changes a lot of things. You can try by getting the Android SDK Platform Tools for Linux on your Chromebook. Extract the contents to a location to allow fastboot commands and adb use.

Under Chrome OS’s Linux settings, enable the ADB debugging in the Develop Android apps section. The device will restart and then launch a Linux console to set up an ADB-over-WiFi server. Run the adb connect command. Bring the apps to the platform-tools folder and then sideload Android apps. This process doesn’t need enabling Developer Mode on your Chromebook

Chrome OS 80 is still in the Dev mode. There may still be issues so do things at your own risk. Someday, sideloading, downloading, and installing apps may go more smoothly.


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