Sideloading APKs on a Chromebook without being in dev mode.

The Chrome web browser app store has an app called ARC Welder, which allows you to run Android apps if you’re on Chrome OS, or using the Chrome web browser.

ARC in ARC Welder is short for “App Runtime for Chrome”. So with this, you can run APK files.

To install, simply go to the chrome store link above, and choose “Add to Chrome”. The first installation was small and quick (~48mb), but then it will need to download additional files for the “App Runtime for Chrome”. This additional file shows up in my chrome extensions as being ~575mb in size.

Once everything is installed, you’ll see the ARC Welder icon in your app drawer. Click on it, and you’ll be prompted to add your apk, choose the defaults, and you’re off! I only had an APK for Dragon Quest III, which it installed and ran with no issues whatsoever. It even added the DQIII icon to my app drawer.

The one caveat to ARC Welder is that you can only side-load one app at a time. So if I chose to test out another APK, DQIII would be removed, and replaced with the new app.

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