Starting Windows 11, Microsoft enabled Android app support on Windows devices through Amazon Appstore. Though the move is definitely in a good direction, the Amazon Appstore still has very limited apps.
If you are not afraid to dive a bit deeper into the nerdy stuff there’s also a way you can install Google Play Store on your Windows 11 computer. However, the process is a bit complex and might not be suitable for some users.
Thankfully, the ‘WSATools’ app present on the Microsoft Store really helps you out to install (sideload) Android app APK files in one click if using command-line tools is not your thing.
Download and Install the WSATools App from the Microsoft Store
First, you will need to install the WSATools App from the Microsoft Store so you can start installing Android app APK files with one click on your Windows 11 device.
To do so, head to the Start Menu and click on the Microsoft Store tile.
Next, from the Microsoft Store window, click on the search bar and type
WSATools and hit
Enter on your keyboard. You can also use the WSATools Microsoft Store link to directly open the app’s page in the store.
Now, click on the ‘Get’ button present on the left section of the screen. The app will now download and install on your system.
Set Up Android SDK Platform Tools and Environment Variable
While the app does help you to sideload any
.apk file on your Windows 11 computer, you still need to set up the Android SDK platform tool and set the environment variable on your computer to let WSATools do its work.
To get started, head to the official Android Studio website developer.android.com/studio/platform-tools using your preferred browser. Then, click on the ‘Download SDK Platform Tools for Windows’ option present under the ‘Downloads’ section. This will open an overlay window on your screen.
Next, scroll down and click on the checkbox preceding the ‘I have read and agree with the above terms and conditions’ label, and then click on the ‘Download Android SDK Platform-Tools for Windows’ button present to the bottom right of the window.
Once the tool has been downloaded, right-click on the
zip file and choose the ‘Extract All’ option to extract the folder.
After the folder has been extracted, right-click on the folder and choose the ‘Copy’ option. Alternatively, you can also press the Ctrl+C shortcut on your keyboard.
Now, head to your Windows installer drive and paste the folder by pressing the Ctrl+V shortcut on your keyboard.
Once the folder is copied, head to ‘Settings’ app from the Start Menu of your Windows device.
Next, make sure the ‘System’ tab is selected from the left sidebar.
Then, scroll down to locate and click on the ‘About’ tile present to the right of the window.
After that, click on the ‘Advanced system settings’ option from the ‘Related links’ tab. This will open a separate window on your screen.
From the ‘System Properties’ window, click on the ‘Environment Variables’ option situated in the bottom right corner of the window. This will again open a separate window on your screen.
Now, from the ‘Environment Variables’ window, locate the ‘System variables’ section and click to select the ‘Path’ variable. Then, click on the ‘Edit’ button present under the section.
Then, from the opened window, click on the ‘New’ button to create a new entry and then click on the ‘Browse’ button and select the ‘Android SDK Platform tools’ folder you just copied in the Windows installer drive.
Once you have added the folder, you will be able to see it in the list. Now, click on the ‘OK’ button to confirm and close the window.
Then, again press the ‘OK’ button on the ‘Environment Variables’ window to save the change you made.
The environment variable is now set on your Windows device.
Turn on Developer Mode in Windows Subsystem for Android
Once you have downloaded SDK Platform Tools and set the environment variable on your computer. It is time you enable ‘Developer Mode’ in the ‘Windows Subsystem for Android’ app. In case you haven’t installed the subsystem yet, read our dedicated article on installing Windows Subsystem for Android on Windows 11.
To enable Developer Mode, head to the Start Menu and click on the ‘All apps’ button present on the top right of the flyout.
Next, scroll down and locate the ‘Windows Subsystem for Android’ and click on it to launch the app.
From the WSA window, locate the ‘Developer mode’ option and toggle the following switch to the ‘On’ position.
Now, under the ‘System resources’ section, select the ‘Continous’ option by clicking on the radio button preceding the option to let the Subsystem run in the background.
Installing Android APK Files in a Single Click
Once you have installed the WSATools app and set up the SDK platform and Environment variables on your computer, you can now install any Android app APK on your Windows computer with a single click.
You can either use the WSATools app to browse APK files or just open up File Explorer on your PC and double-click on any APK file to get an installer window via the WSATools app.
You’ll get a WSATools APK Installer window with the APK file loaded and ready to install on your computer. Click on the ‘Install’ to install the app.
After the app has been installed, the WSATools window will notify you of the same. To install another app, click on the ‘Install another app’ otherwise, click on the ‘Close’ button to exit the window.
To verify that the app has been installed successfully, open up the Start menu on your Windows 11 device and click on the ‘All apps’ button.
Next, scroll to locate your installed app from the alphabetically ordered list and click on it to launch the app.
You can also search for the newly installed Android app from Windows Search as well.