How to install a previous version of an Android app

How to install a previous version of an Android app

June 5, 2022 By ariannaflamini

Did you know that on Android devices you can go back to the previous version of an app? The steps to take are actually not very complex. Before restoring the app to its previous state, you need to do a few things that we’re going to explain. Today’s guide will talk about how to install a previous version of an Android app.

A solution to install the previous version of an app, is to re-install the app through its APK file, downloaded from external sites. But what is an APK file? It is exactly talking about installation packages for applications on Android. When you download an app from the Play Store, the most up-to-date APK file will be downloaded and installed automatically.

However, remember to be careful when downloading an APK file from the Internet, because you might end up on unreliable websites that offer malware-containing applications. After that, the first step you need to do is to enable the Unknown Sources option from Android Settings.

To perform this operation:

  1. Launch the Settings app on your smartphone (the icon with a gear symbol).
  2. Scroll the screen until you see Security.
  3. Press it and then move the Unknown Origins switch to ON.
  4. Tap OK to confirm.

Obviously the procedure could change little depending on the smartphone and the operating system you are using. Also, for security reasons, we recommend that you keep this option active only on necessary occasions.

Now, another operation to do is to disable the app’s automatic update. To disable it:

  1. launch the Play Store via its icon.
  2. In the search field at the top, type the name of the app you are interested in.
  3. Press on the app name twice.
  4. After that, tap the three-dot button on the top right.
  5. Finally, remove the checkmark from Automatic Update.

APK

Now that you have done these two fundamental operations, you can manually install the APK package of the app that interests you. There are many sites that allow you to download this type of file and versions prior to the last available on the Play Store. Among them, we would recommend APKMirror, because it presents a vast database of applications with the ability to download any version. Now we can proceed!

Open the browser on your Android device and reach the home page of the APKMirror website. Use the magnifying glass button in the top bar to search for the app whose previous version you want to install. When you see the results, tap on the Apps tab and look for it among the ones in the list, then press on its icon. In this way, you will be directed to the page of the app that will contain all its versions published so far.

Now, scroll through the screen to All Versions and tap on the version of the app that has a version number older than the last update that was run. If you find under the name of the version the words (number)Variants, it means that more APKs of the same version are available according to the characteristics of the device.

Then press the down arrow icon next to the name of the version you want to download. Then scroll down the page and press the down arrow next to the version details. You will see the compatible processor type and Android version. Then, in the new screen, press on the APK Download button, to start downloading the file.

If a download confirmation alert appears, click the OK or Download button anyway. After you have got the APK file, press on Open if you have allowed the browser to run APK files from unknown sources. If not, and you have configured a File Manager, launch it and click on the downloaded APK in the Downloads folder. Finally, tap Install to confirm the installation and click Open.

In this way, you have installed a previous version of an Android app.

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