If you’re a Chrome user on PC or Mac, you’ve probably used some awesome Chrome extensions extend its functionality. Unfortunately, Chrome users on Android don’t get this luxury, with extensions limited to the desktop version of Chrome.
However, if you’re looking to install desktop Chrome extensions on Android, there’s a way to do it. You will need to switch browsers, but you can use the Chrome extension on Android thanks to the Chromium-based Kiwi browser. To start using Kiwi, here’s what you need to do.
What is Kiwi Browser and is it safe?
Kiwi Browser is an open source alternative to the main Chrome browser. It uses the same core technology, based on the Chromium project as the foundation for Chrome, Microsoft Edge, and several other browsers. In terms of interface, it’s not too different from the standard Chrome experience, but adds a few extra features.
Kiwi browser not only allows you to install Chrome extensions on Android, but it also blocks ads and pop-ups, protects against browser attacks, and automatically accepts some warnings by browsers. browser (such as accepting GDPR) for a better overall browsing experience.
It also has some extra security features, with a built-in tracking blocker to prevent your web activity from being tracked. There are also some speed improvements over the standard Chrome browser, thanks to the removal of some Google-specific features.
Overall, Kiwi is a lot like Chrome, but without the Google tag. It doesn’t support syncing Google accounts, but this is probably a good thing, giving you more privacy for your data. The Kiwi browser is completely safe to use and thanks to its extension support you can extend its functionality even further.
How to install Kiwi browser on Android
If you want to install Kiwi Browser on Android, the easiest method is to use the Google Play Store.
- To install Kiwi Browser using the Play Store, open the Play Store app on your Android device and search for Kiwi Browser using the search bar. Once you’ve found a Kiwi, choose Setting to install the app on your device.
- After installing Kiwi, select Open button. Alternatively, locate the app in your device’s app drawer, then tap the Kiwi icon to launch it.
Kiwi browser is updated regularly, but if you want you can compile it yourself on your PC using Kiwi GitHub Repository and install the browser manually using compiled APK file. The code is the same as the Kiwi Browser release via the Play Store and should work exactly the same.
Install or remove Chrome extensions in Kiwi browser
Once you’ve installed Kiwi and opened it for the first time, you’ll see the initial tab menu. This is similar to the first tab menu in the official Chrome browser on Android, allowing you to customize shortcuts and listed news items.
- To install Chrome extensions in Kiwi, select three-dot menu icon at the top right.
- In the menu, select Extensions right to buy.
- The Extensions menu will look similar to the Extensions menu in Chrome. From here, you can manually load the extension files (in crx, zip or user.js format) that you have saved locally on your Android device. However, most users will prefer to use Chrome Web Store to add these. To do this, tap Google link.
- The Google the link will take you to a Google search for Chrome extensions. Choose Chrome Web Store results to store access.
- The Chrome Web Store is built for desktop users, so navigating it on Android devices (especially smartphones) is a bit of a pain. You may want to switch to Scenery on your device first to help navigate the menu. Use the search bar to search for the extensions you want to install, or click one of the suggested suggestions.
- Once you’ve found the extension you want to install, select Add to Chrome options on the page for that extension.
- Kiwi will ask you to confirm that you want to install the extension. Option ALRIGHT do like that. You can get a Download failed error appears — ignore this, as the extension will still be installed.
- You can check the installed extension by going back Extensions menu by selecting three-dot menu icon > Extensions. The extensions you should install will automatically activate, but if not, select slider icon next to the extension for in position blue. Also, if you want to disable the widget, tap the slider, switch it to out of position.
- If you want to customize the extension, select Details right to buy. This will list more information about the extension, including its version, size, required permissions, and more. You can also customize the extension options by selecting Extension Options options menu. You can also access the settings for your installed extensions as an entry in the Kiwi menu by tapping three-dot menu iconalthough this is not the case for every extension.
- To remove the extension at any time, select Eliminate in the main Extensions menu.
- Kiwi will ask you to confirm if you want to remove it. Option ALRIGHT confirm.
Find the best Chrome extensions for Android
Kiwi browser supports Chrome extensions, but that doesn’t mean they support Kiwi. Most Chrome extensions are built with desktop browsing in mind. This means that, even if you can install some Chrome extensions on Android using Kiwi, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they will work.
Unfortunately, there is no easy way to check if this is the case without installing them first. You’ll need to test each extension, making sure it works as expected and doesn’t cause your browser to become unstable or stop working.
However, some Chrome extensions on Android work fine. Including Evernote, Bitmoji, uBlock Originand Google Hangouts. If any of the extensions don’t work, you’ll need to remove them using the steps above and search for replacements.
You may also find that some extensions (such as Google Hangouts) have their own standalone Android apps available. If any of the apps you try out don’t work, check if they have similar apps in the Google Play Store.
Browsing the web better on Android
Thanks to Kiwi, you can comfortably use some of your favorite Chrome extensions on Android, giving you a better browsing experience. There are alternatives, however, with Brave Browser and the Chromium-based Microsoft Edge browser provides a great experience for Android users (though it doesn’t support extensions).
If you’re thinking about switching browsers, you might want to think about switching devices. It’s easy enough to switch from Android to iPhone, although the transition from iPhone to Android is a bit more complicated. Whatever device or browser you’re using, make sure to check online privacy settings to keep your data safe from others.