How To Add Apps to a Sony Smart TV
Although Sony TVs offer various exciting features, installing new apps will allow you to unlock even more possibilities. Perhaps you aren’t satisfied with the traditional TV program and crave the variety of content only a streaming service like Netflix or Disney Plus can provide. You also might be looking for some quality music, productivity, or system apps. Whatever the case, you can easily add the desired app to your Sony TV, regardless of its model. Keep reading to learn how.
Adding Apps on Your Sony Smart TV
Newer Sony TV models are Smart TVs, meaning they use the Android operating system from Google. As such, they come with a pre-installed Google Play Store. Installing apps on your TV is practically as easy as downloading new apps to an Android device. The fundamental requirements are also the same – you’ll need a stable internet connection and a Google account.
However, there are certain limitations to keep in mind:
- Not all apps are compatible with your TV.
- Not all apps are free.
- The paid apps require linking a credit card to your Google account or using a prepaid Google Pay gift card.
The installation process will slightly differ depending on your Smart TV type. Sony added Android TVs to their lineup in 2015, while Google TVs (not to be confused with the old Google TV operating system) joined them in 2021. If their integrated apps and services don’t appeal to you, you can easily add more variety to your Sony Android or Google TV.
How to Add Apps to Sony Android TV
Since Google Play is essential for adding new apps to your Sony TV, the first step is to access the store. Depending on your Android operating system, this might take you no more than two or three clicks.
Here’s how to access the Google Play Store on most Sony Smart TVs:
- Press the “Home” button on your TV remote.
- Navigate to the “Apps” category.
- Select the “Google Play Store” app.
This app won’t be immediately visible on all TVs with Android 8.0 version and some Android 9.0 models. If your TV falls under these categories, do the following:
- Click on the “Apps” button on the TV’s home screen.
- Go to the “Get more apps” option.
Once you’ve accessed the store, you can browse the available apps using the navigation buttons on your TV remote control. If you already have an app in mind, use the “Search” icon to look for it.
If you don’t see the “Search” icon, press the up arrow on your remote, and the icon should pop up on the screen. After clicking on it, an input field will appear on the top of your screen. There are two ways to enter the name of the app you want to download:
- Voice search
- On-screen keyboard
If you go the more convenient route, here’s how to find an app using the voice search:
- Navigate to the microphone icon on the right side of the input field.
- Press the “Enter” button on your remote.
- Once the microphone changes its color, say the name of the app you’re looking for.
The color and shape of the microphone icon might differ depending on the TV model or the Android version. In most cases, the icon will start off white and turn red once the voice search is activated.
If the voice search function isn’t enabled on your TV or it isn’t yielding accurate results, you can try using the on-screen keyboard. This method is a bit more tedious since it requires navigating to each letter individually.
To access this keyboard, simply go to the input field and press the “Enter” button on your remote. If the keyboard doesn’t appear at the bottom of your screen, try an alternative method:
- If your microphone icon is white, press the right arrow button on your remote once.
- If your microphone icon is red, press the same button twice.
After inputting each letter of the app’s name with the arrow keys and the “Enter” button on your remote, navigate to the “Search” button on your screen.
The apps corresponding to your input will appear on the screen, regardless of your search method. Use the navigation arrows on the remote to select the desired app and press “Enter” to open the app’s page. From there, select the “Install” option.
After the app has been installed, you’ll be able to access it from the home page or through the “App” icon.
How to Add Apps to Sony Google TV
On a Google TV, the entire home screen basically functions as a Google Play Store. So, you can start searching for your app right away.
If you’re up for discovering new apps, follow these steps:
- Scroll to the “Apps” tab on the Google TV home screen.
- Use the navigation arrows to browse the available apps.
The apps are broken down into categories, such as Entertainment, Sports, and Music & Audio. There’s also a handy “Apps from my other devices” category.
If, however, you’re looking for a specific app, there’s no need to waste your time browsing through the sea of available choices. Here’s what to do instead:
- Press the “Google Assistant” button on your remote control.
- Say the name of the app you wish to install.
The app’s page will pop up on your screen, provided the app is supported by your TV model. From there, simply select the Install button to add the app to your Sony TV.
You can also search for the app using the on-screen keyboard instead of the voice search:
- Press the “Home” button on your remote.
- Navigate to the “Search” tab at the top of the page.
- Select the input field and press “Enter” to display the keyboard.
- Use the arrow keys to type the name of the app.
- Select the desired app and click “Enter.”
Add Apps to Sony TV Without Google Play
If you can’t access the Google Play Store or the app displays an error message, there’s an alternative way to add apps to your Sony TV. All you need is a PC connected to the internet, a USB stick, and the app’s Android Package (APK) file.
You can download the APK file from the Google Play Store in two ways:
If you install the extension, the “Download APK” option will appear on the app’s page on Google Play Store. Alternatively, you can copy the app’s URL address and paste the link into the search box in the upper-right corner of the APKPure website.
You can also visit third-party websites like APKMirror and download the desired file directly.
Once you download the necessary APK file, transfer it to your Sony TV using a USB stick. Once the USB stick is inserted, the file folder should appear on the screen. Click on the file, and the installation will start automatically.
Add Apps to Old Sony TV
Unlike Smart TVs, older Sony models aren’t equipped with an Android OS and, consequently, a Google Play Store. Unfortunately, there isn’t a way to download the Google Play app to these models.
However, you can find a workaround by using some dongles or streaming boxes that offer the ability to install and enjoy various apps on your Sony TV. These alternative methods of adding apps only require your TV to have an HDMI port.
Amazon Fire TV Stick
The Fire TV Stick is a media streaming device that converts a regular TV into a Smart TV. You can use it to stream videos, play music, and install new apps on your Sony TV.
Roku Streaming Stick
The Roku Streaming Stick is a portable device that offers a wide array of streaming options. Among the many features, you can use it to add apps to your Sony TV.
It should be noted that the manufacturer claims that this device should be compatible with any TV with an HDMI port. However, some users have had issues using the Roku Streaming Stick 4K on a non-4K TV. So, an older Sony TV might require an older stick version.
Chromecast is Google’s streaming media adapter designed to cast any content from your smartphone, tablet, PC, or laptop to your TV. Essentially, this handy dongle allows you to use a secondary device as a remote control for your Sony TV.
Although Chromecast doesn’t allow you to install content on your TV permanently, it’s a great way to enjoy your favorite apps on the big screen.
Think Outside the Box
With new and exciting apps coming out daily, why limit yourself to the pre-loaded choices on your Sony TV? Even if your TV doesn’t come with any apps, you can quickly transform it into a buffet of content with a media streaming device. Whichever method of adding new apps your TV requires, the process is simple, and the end result is seemingly endless entertainment.
Have you tried downloading apps on your TV? What TV app is a must-have for you? Let us know in the comments section below.