PDQ Library:  Android Help

Android App Stores

Google's authorized devices have android with a built-in "Play" icon that accesses the Google Play store, a large collection of free and paid apps. If you buy an Android device without that icon, you can never use Google Play or any of its front-end sites (listed with it) to download apps - you must get them from independent 3rd party stores (listed from #2).

  1. Google Play Store (Android Market)
      Front-end sites to apps in Google Play:
  2. Amazon Android App Store (not available to Canada)
  3. Appstorehq
  4. AppsLib - Tablet apps
  5. Filestube
  6. GetJar
  7. Handango Android Apps
  8. Ineedfile
  9. Leaf Open Market (New Zealand)
  10. SlideME - largest independent Android App store
  11. Softonic.com
  12. M.Umnet

Installing Android Apps

Before you start, you must allow your phone to install apps from "other" Android stores:
      Menu > Settings > Applications > Check "Unknown Sources"

Some stores provide an "app" to search and install their apps from your phone. This is easier than using the phone's browser but more difficult than using a PC browser. You usually have to setup a payment method in your account before you can buy paid apps, but free apps can be downloaded without any fuss.

If you buy and download from your desktop computer, you will need to transfer the APK file (android package that is used to install and app on your phone). To install the app on your phone, use "HTC Sync" desktop software and a USB connection. (The program that came on my phone SD card didn't work. Get the updated version at HTC.COM.) There are other methods of installing apps. There is an app that allows you to select an attachment (APK file) in a Gmail message and install it.

There is a Windows program called installAPK that install apps on your USB-connected phone by double clicking on the APK file on your PC. (android.modaco.com)

First download, install and run the HTC_Sync program on your computer. Then you connect the phone to your computer with a USB cable that came with your phone. The phone will immediately display a window asking you which of 3 choices you want to connect: "HTC Sync" or "disk drive" or "Mobile network sharing". Press "HTC Sync" and "Done". Back on the PC, select "Install app" and follow the prompts. Over on the phone, you will be prompted to install the app, and optionally to run it. Good idea in case it doesn't work on your phone - common problem with the HTC Tattoo (aka HTC Click).

If you acquire an app using a desktop PC, you can then copy the app file (xxx.APK) to your SD card and insert it into your android device. From Android's File Manager, navigate to the APK and select it. The android system should detect it's an APK, and ask if you want to install it. Select "yes". Once installed to your device, you may delete the APK file from your card.

To uninstall apps:
  MENU > Settings > Applications > Manage Applications > MENU > Filter > 3rd Party > {program} >Uninstall

Android Information

PDQ Help

Android Information

Android Forums

Android How-To's

How to backup your phone's SD card to a hard drive

  1. Connect your phone as a Disk Drive using a USB cord - see manual for instructions.
  2. Open the file explorer (START+E) in a window on the right side of your screen. Create a backup folder in My Documents named something like Android-Backup. Open that folder (it will be empty).
  3. Open a second file explorer window on the left and locate the SD card shown under "Computer" - something like Removable Disk (F:). Double-click to open it. It may have folders called things like DCIM, download, Music, Wallpaper.
  4. Type CTRL+A to select all file and folders in the Removable Disk.
  5. Now drag the entire selection to the empty Android-Backup folder.
  6. This may time several minutes if you have a lot of media files.
  7. Before you disconnect the USB cord, you may find it interesting to see how much storage is left. Right click on Removable Disk (F:) and select Properties.

How to Copy Music files to your Android Phone

  1. Use the procedure above to open two file explorer windows. Locate your music files in one, and open the phone's Music folder on the Removable Disk - something like F:\Music.
  2. The music is organized on the SD card in folders named for the Artist, then a subfolder matching the Album name. e.g. F:\Music\The Beatles\Abbey Road
  3. In the Album name folder are MP3 files with names that contain the 2-digit # number and the song. Normal spacing is used. e.g. 07 Here Comes the Sun.mp3
  4. Locate the Artist folder on your hard drive and drag it to the Music folder on the SD card.

How to Convert Videos to Android 3pg Format

Android Videos must be stored in the 3pg format to view using the standard Android viewer. If your videos are in another format, you must find software that can convert to 3pg video files. The DVDVideoSoft Free Studio has a 3GP Video Converter can convert mp4 files to 3gp format. First install this converter and use it to create a new file in 3pg format. Then connect your phone as a Disk Drive using the USB connector. Next locate the DCIM\100MEDIA folder where photos are also located and copy your 3gp file into it. Now you can play the videos from the "Albums" apps that all Android system have for viewing photos and videos.


application on your phone installed from APK files.
Android Application Package file (extension .apk) used by the Android installer on your phone.
Global Positioning System. Communicates with earth satellites to determine your location for mapping apps.
"3rd Generation" standard for simultaneous use of speech and data services on mobile phones.
(Groupe Spécial Mobile) Global standard for mobile phone service using digital channels for both signaling and speech.
The Android market is an online site where you can purchase or download Android applications. Must be part of your android operating system - cannot be added.
Read-Only Memory - the phone's flash memory on which read-only android system data resides. Also the packed image file to be written to the flash area.
Handles mobile connections such as GSM/3G network, Bluetooth, WiFi and GPS.
The highest level superuser (su) on an Android system. Applications run by the root user, have administrative access to protected files and services. A 'rooted' device has been hacked to provide su operation. Rooting a device is usually the first step in installing cooked ROMs.
Viewable area at any one time. Most Android phones have 7 screens.
A program that runs in the background to perform persistent actions, such as playing music or monitoring network activity.
A set of default display settings such as text size, background color, wallpaper, etc.
Screen element such as a text box, full-screen calendar or popup menu.
More glossary terms...
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