Did you buy an Amazon Fire TV Stick recently and discover that the YouTube app was missing? Well, Google yanked it of the Fire TV Stick after a fallout with Amazon last December. Thankfully, there’s a way to install YouTube app on the Fire TV Stick. You can also link your smartphone or tablet to the YouTube app on the Fire TV Stick to cast videos.
Disclaimer: This tutorial involves downloading an Android package file (apk) from a third-party source. I am not responsible if it messes up your phone or Fire TV Stick. Follow it at your own risk.
Here’s what you will need to install YouTube app on Fire TV Stick:
- Amazon Fire TV Stick (My unit runs Fire OS 184.108.40.206)
- An Android smartphone
- Working Wi-Fi connection
- Familiarity with the Voice Remote
Step 1 – Enable installing apps from Unknown Sources
On your Fire TV Stick, navigate through Settings > Devices > Developer Options. Scroll down and click on the App from Unknown Sources to turn it on.
Step 2 – Install ES File Explorer app on Fire TV Stick
You can use the Voice Search function of the Voice Remote to search for ES Fire Explorer app on the Fire TV Stick.
Alternatively, you can navigate to Apps > Categories > Utility and find the ES Explorer app in the first row.
Download the app and then launch it on your Fire TV Stick. Leave it open for now.
Step 3 – Install ES File Explorer on your Android smartphone
Search and install the ES File Explorer app from the Google Play Store.
Step 4 – Download the YouTube app for Fire TV Stick
Download the old YouTube app on your phone via this link – http://bit.ly/oldfiretvyoutube
Step 5 – Transfer the YouTube apk to the Fire TV Stick
Once the app download completes, ES File Explorer will offer you an option to Open Folder or Open File. Select the option Open Folder.
From the folder, select the YouTube apk file, tap on the vertical ellipsis option at the bottom and then select Send option. That will show radar like animation, and your Fire TV Stick will show up as AFTT. Tap on that to send the file to the Fire TV Stick.
Note: Check that your phone and Fire TV Stick are connected to the same Wi-Fi Network.
Step 6 – Install YouTube TV app on Fire TV Stick
If your Fire TV Stick UI gets stretched or distorted, don’t worry. It’s normal. Just press the Home button and then relaunch the ES Explorer. In the app, navigate to Internal Storage > Home > esShare folder to locate the YouTube apk. Click on it and select Install.
Step 7 – Sign in to the YouTube App on Fire TV Stick
Open the YouTube app on the Fire TV Stick, and it will show you a notice about the app not being available from January 1 onward. Select OK.
Now, select the second last Account menu icon and initiate the sign in process. Open the link youtube.com/activate on your mobile phone, enter the code shown on the Fire TV Stick UI and complete the activation process.
Step 8 – Enable casting YouTube videos to Fire TV Stick
In the YouTube app for Fire TV Stick, click on the gear icon and select Link with Wi-Fi option. Now open the YouTube app on your phone, the one connected to the same Wi-Fi network, and select the Cast icon.
Finally, you can enjoy watching your favorite YouTube videos on Fire TV Stick. In case you accidentally update the YouTube app on the Fire TV stick, or you see the option to open it with Amazon Silk or Mozilla Firefox, here’s what you need to do – Uninstall the YouTube app from Fire TV Stick and repeat Steps 6 to 8.
Hopefully Google and Amazon will make up in the future to so that the YouTube app for Fire TV Stick is officially available again.