The ones using an Android phone as their daily drivers will know what the built-in Google apps mean. Google has a huge mesh of services that it offers to the Android users by way of its apps and they essentially create the base for all other services. While this may stand true for the most users but the more advanced users who like to play with the open source nature of Android won’t necessarily get the complete Google Apps suite.
In case you install a custom ROM on your Android device, the Google branded apps won’t be coming pre-installed. That’s where GApps packages come into the picture that allows you to download and install all the required Google apps on your device running custom ROMs like Lineage OS. Before going ahead and getting one, you need to know that these packages come with a different set of apps that are compatible with different Android versions and processor architecture.
You need to choose the right package for your device depending on the apps you need and the device you have. We have created a simple guide that will help you get the package that will perfectly suit your requirements.
Which GApps Package Should I Choose?
The choice depends on the number of Google apps you want in your device. As you can see in the chart below, Pico GApps package comes with the basic Google apps and services and is also the lightest package of them all. The list gets longer with Nano, Micro, Mini, and Full, with the Stock package offering the entire list of apps and services for your device with custom ROM.
And in case you want to go further, the Super package is available that offers Android Pay, Google Apps Device Policy, Google Connectivity Services, Google Earth, Project Fi, Google Translate, Street View, Indic Keyboard, and much more above the apps and services offered in the Stock package. On the other hand, there is an Aroma GApps package that is a special version of the Super package. It allows you to choose which apps to install without having to manually write GApps-config file.
How to Check Processor Architecture
While it is fairly easy to find out the Android version of your device, it might be a bit tricky to find out the processor architecture. The kernel version of your OS can give you the detail of the processor architecture, which can be found in the Settings. If that is not an available option for your device, you can install AnTuTu app to find out the hardware details of your phone.
AnTuTu is a popular benchmarking app that will give you a detailed look at your device. You can see the hardware info section to get all the details of the processor architecture and the Android version also. These are the essential things that you will need in the next steps to download the correct GApps for Android package. Note these details down and move on to the next step.
GApps Supported Android Versions
The GApps packages not only work with the latest Android versions but are also compatible with the older versions. Below is the list of supported Android versions for which GApps are supported.
- GApps for Android 5.0 Lollipop (CM 12 GApps)
- GApps for Android 5.1 Lollipop (CM 12.1 GApps)
- GApps for Android 6.0 Marshmallow (CM 13 GApps)
- GApps for Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow (CM 13 GApps)
- GApps for Android 7.0 Nougat (CM 14 GApps)
- GApps for Android 7.1 Nougat (CM 14 GApps)
Android 4.4 KitKat is now a fairly old version of Android and is not being used nowadays. That’s the reason GApps for Android 4.4 support has ended and you can get the GApps for Android 5.0 and above. Also, since of the people reading this piece are here after flashing a ROM, which itself means that you’re aware and advanced enough to have the latest Android version on your device, even if your OEM didn’t provide it.
Now that you specifically know the OS version and processor architecture, and have decided which GApps package to choose, you can now choose the right version of the GApps for your device from Open GApps. The Open GApps Project is the only place where you’ll find GApps for all Android versions and custom mods. Be it GApps for Android 6.0 or GApps for Android 7.0, or even the latest Android 7.1, the website will let you download them all.
You can head to its website from here, and download the desired version. The website is fairly easy to use and allows you to select the platform, Android version, and the GApps package you want. You can see the sections in the included image of the website. You will have to use the knowledge you have gained in the previous sections and select the Android version, platform, and the GApps package on this screen.
Selecting the required options will reveal the package size that can range from 70MB to over a GB, depending on the options you choose. The website also displays the date for that particular so that you check if you’re getting the latest version of GApps for CyanogenMod or any other custom ROM that you might have installed. Then you can click on the red download button to get the GApps for your device.
How to Install GApps
For flashing the GApps for Android on your device, you need the following things:
- The GApps package you had downloaded in the previous step. It should be moved to the internal storage of the phone.
- Your device must have custom TWRP recovery installed on your device.
After readying the things mentioned above, you can now install Google GApps package on your device. Below mentioned are the steps that you need to follow:
- Now that you have copied the downloaded zip file in the internal memory of your device, you need to restart your phone in the TWRP recovery mode. Holding the Volume Down + Power Button for a few seconds will do the trick.
- There, you can click on the Wipe button and select Swipe to Factory Reset.
- Once done, you need to head to the main menu and click on the Install button and select the GApps zip file that you had downloaded in the earlier steps. After that, you need to swipe to install the package.
- The installation will take some time and once it completes, you can reboot your device. That’s it, you will now have the GApps package installed on your device running a custom ROM.