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Amazon’s Fire tablets ship with a modified version of Android called Fire OS. It’s tightly linked with Amazon’s apps and services including the Kindle, Prime Video, and Amazon Music apps. It also features Amazon’s Appstore instead of the Google Play Store. But folks have been installing the Play Store on Amazon’s tablets for years.
Up until recently it was pretty easy to do, but things got a bit tricky this year when Amazon started shipping tablets with Fire OS 8. For the past few months many people with 2022 Fire 7 or Fire HD 8 tablets found that they couldn’t install Google services… or if they could, some apps wouldn’t work properly. Now it looks like Google services are working again. You still need to install them yourself though.
First, a brief timeline. For the past few years Amazon has been shipping tablets with Fire OS 7, an operating system that’s based on Android 9. And it was pretty easy to install Google apps and services: either by downloading and installing a few Google apps manually, or by using an automated tool like Fire Toolbox.
And when Amazon shipped the 2022 Fire 7 tablet this summer, I was quickly able to get Google Play services up and running… but a few weeks later I started to hear from folks that they were having trouble following my guide. And eventually when I tried opening the Play Store on my tablet, it would crash.
So I updated my guide and told people that if they were planning to pick up a Fire OS 8 device specifically because they wanted to install Google Play on the tablet, they should probably opt for a different tablet instead.
Then Amazon introduced a new Fire HD 8 (2022) tablet that also shipped with Fire OS 8. And users also had trouble installing the Play Store on that model.
But a funny thing happened toward the end of November. Amazon started rolling out a Fire OS 22.214.171.124 update and suddenly users who had been unable to get the Play Store to work on tablets running Fire OS 126.96.36.199 noticed that it was working. I’ve confirmed that everything that was working on my Fire 7 tablet June is working again now.
It’s highly unlikely that Amazon intentionally added support for the Play Store. The company’s tablets are cheaper than most competing devices with similar specs because they ship with Amazon’s apps and services instead of Google’s. Amazon doesn’t expect to make much profit from its hardware. Instead, the company expects users to buy eBooks, rent or purchase movies, pay for Amazon Prime, or buy products from Amazon on the tablets.
But it’s possible that a previous operating system updated included a feature which had the side effect of breaking support for Google services… and the new update has the side effect of fixing whatever was broken.
All of which is to say that there’s no guarantee you’ll be able to continue using the Google Play Store on Amazon Fire tablets. So I’m still not sure I’d recommend buying one to use with the Play Store, if you already have one, it’s good to know you can install Google apps and services again.
Keep in mind that not all apps from the Play Store will work well on tablets running Fire OS 8. YouTube works, for example, but YouTube Kids does not. Some folks have found that installing an older version of YouTube Kids resolves the issue, but you’ll need to make sure to tell the Play Store not to automatically update the app.
Anyway, as of early December, 2022 there are again two ways to install the Google Play Store on the Amazon Fire 7 (2022) and Fire HD 10 (2022) tablets:
via xda-developers and /r/kindlefire
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Hey, I followed the directions on the Fire HD 8 12th generation tablet. It keeps telling me that Google Play Services needs to be updated (so many apps do not work – specifically my kids like using EA sports apps). Is there a work around? The Os on the tablet is 188.8.131.52. Is that the problem? I see you reference 184.108.40.206. Is there a way revert back to that OS in the meantime (if that actually would work)?
I honestly think Amazon & Goofle need to work out a deal to have the Play Store even though you can install it yourself. I still think that it would be easier for Amazon Fire users. I currently have the Fire OS 7 from 2019. The only app I am disappointed with not working is JustPlay.
This doesn’t seem to work on the 12th Gen Fire HD 8.
I keep getting the error message ‘YT Kids won’t run without Google Play services, which are missing from your device’ when trying to load YouTube Kids.
That’s a known issue, as mentioned in the article. The best workaround seems to be to install an older version of the app and then tell the Play Store not to automatically update it.
I’ve been putting Google Play Store on my Fire Tablets 8″ and 10″ no issues but for on 10 Amazon Photos, Prime Video, Audible, South and Washington Post won’t update? On 8″ ABC News won’t update in Google Play…
Can you launch with nova now too?
Honestly the Amazon app store sucks. Even apps on echo like wyze don’t have a camera app in the store. It makes me forget I even have the fire over my ipads. I with they would do stock android with like 2/5th of the screen an Amazon launcher and make a deal with Google to get like 5% of whatever Google makes from purchases on through a fire device. Everyone makes more money and we have a decent default android tablet line. They could even make a pricier line of tablets and Google wouldn’t need to make one at all. 🤷♂️
I have the play store app installed on my Fire 8 Plus 2020 tablet but it will not list Craigslist or Offerup as available apps, what’s the problem?
Thanks. Really good post, especially because it specifies exact Fire version numbers. Makes it very easy to assess the situation. Keep up the fine posts!
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