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Android not such a good deal

Nigerians want their BlackBerry back


Devs: Update your apps for the BlackBerry Passport!

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< >

How to put Android apps onto your BlackBerry 10 phone (Mac Guide)

Sideloading Android apps onto your BlackBerry Z10 or BlackBerry Q10 from a Mac is easy with this CrackBerry guide!

Sideload Mac
By Adam Zeis on 1 Feb 2013 04:09 pm EST

While BlackBerry 10 devices already have a huge selection of apps from which to choose, there may be more you want that aren't available in BlackBerry World.

Thankfully on BlackBerry 10 devices you can install Android applications without too much effort. The process, known as sideloading, allows you to transfer converted applications in the BlackBerry format (BAR files) to your device.

While this is one way to sideload, you can also get it done easier with a simple Google Chrome extension.

Keep in mind it's not foolproof however -- some apps work, some don't. There are plenty of free Android apps around the web that have already been converted and are ready to go so you shouldn't have much trouble tracking them down.

You can do this process both from a Windows PC (covered in this post) or a Mac (which we'll talk about here). So if you think you're ready to dive in, keep reading and see just how it's done.

  • First, make sure the drivers from your BlackBerry 10 phone have been installed onto your Mac. So before you sideload any apps, you need to first connect your phone to your Mac, and follow through and allow it to install the drivers it wants to install.
  • Make sure you Mac OS is up to date and then download the Playbook_Tools here. Yes, I know it says "PlayBook Tools" but it works just the same for BlackBerry 10 phones - so stick with us :) 
  • Unzip the files into your /user/ directory (The directory typically shows as your username - mine is "/adamzeis/". You can put them wherever you want, it's just easier this way).


  • Move the files from the Playbook_Tools\lib\ folder to the Playbook_Tools directory.
  • Put your BlackBerry 10 device into Developer Mode by going to Settings > Security and Privacy > Development Mode. Note the IP address of your device - you can change it if you'd like. You'll get a notification in the Hub when Development Mode is enabled. You'll also be required to enter a password here if you don't have one already. Don't forget your password!!

Developer Mode

  • Find the .bar file for the app you want to install (there's a great selection here). After downloading, move the .bar file into the Playbook_Tools directory


  • Connect your BlackBerry 10 device to your Mac via USB
  • Open the Terminal application on your Mac (found under Applications > Utilities > Terminal). Your Terminal screen will show something along the lines of: new-host-2:~ adamzeis$
  • Type cd playbook_tools and press Enter. Terminal should now read something like: new-host-2:playbook_tools adamzeis$
  • Type the followin into Terminal: java -Xmx512M -jar BarDeploy.jar -installApp -device DEVICE_IP -password DEVICE_PASSWORD Be sure to add in your device IP address, password and the name of the .bar file.


  • Terminal will do it's magic and when it's done, your app will be ready to roll on your BlackBerry 10 device.
  • You can turn off both Development Mode and Password (Settings > Security and Privacy > Development Mode) unless you typically use a password.

    So that's all there is to it. As we said earlier, after the initial setup, loading up Android apps on your BlackBerry 10 device from your Mac takes just a few minutes. Head to the forums to track down some BAR files for these and more.

    Discuss more in our Android App Sideloading forum
    On a Windows PC? Check out our sideloading guide here 


    Jerome Smith

    can it work for instagram ?


    I made both instagram and whatsapp work for Z10... :)


    How did you make it work? Because I am having the hardest trouble sideloading anything onto my phone. I get as far as downloading the software but then I'm not sure if its unzipped or anything and I am following the instructions. Please help.


    Great now I get Instagram and all.

    Danielle Cristina

    Please help... I have MAC and tried downloading from for the android app loader. I looked up all the tutorials and followed but I am not seeing the same thing. I am not computer savvy and i need help :( PLEASEEEEE... I can't live without my instagram or snap chat and now that I have my Q10 I can't live without it either.


    I'm more curious if someone could try this for Netflix...>

    Or will this just WORK with any android app? O.o


    Will try this on Monday :)


    same, but on Tuesday, my preorder just got delivered to the store this afternoon but they wont let me pick it up till Tuesday!


    The same process as on the PlayBook... Sweet! Makes things super easy!


    will this work on Q10 even though is has a smaller screen?


    So, as I understand sideloading based on my PlayBook experience, the moment you sideload an app you did not convert on your own computer from .apk to .bar you become as insecure as any Android device out there?

    I would imagine that BES Admins would disengage this feature the moment the BB10 phones were deployed no?


    I've tried doing this several times and keeps coming up in terminal

    Error: Unknown argument Poic
    Please can somebody help


    I've tried doing this and when I get to the last stage and press enter it says host name may not be null. Does anyone know what this means?



    Great how-to. Thanks. Worked like a charm for me. I took the time this afternoon to write a little Automator application to make it easier to sideload the apps on my Playbook (and Z10 when I get it tomorrow from Rogers).

    Check out the How-To Video here:

    And grab the Automator app here:



    I am trying to side load with your BB10 Sideload Android App and I get this message
    -bash: syntax error near unexpected token `)'
    Can you help?


    Hi @6ix8ights - can you paste the entire terminal windows contents so I can see if I can help you?


    Last login: Wed Apr 3 02:54:19 on ttys000 6ix8ights:~ renegade$ cd $HOME/Playbook_Tools/ && java -Xmx512M -jar BarDeploy.jar -installApp -device -password break -bash: syntax error near unexpected token `)'


    Change the name of your .bar file to be one word instead of two. Eg. break to


    I do not think that that is the problem. Even the cannot be installed.
    I did everything to the letter but it just won't work.
    6ix8ights:~ renegade$ cd $HOME/Playbook_Tools/ && java -Xmx512M -jar BarDeploy.jar -installApp -device -password break -bash: syntax error near unexpected token `)'
    Btw break is my password which has nothing to do with the .bar file. I need help :(


    Hmm. If you try to sideload using terminal following Adam's instructions above, does it work for you?


    No. it still says
    -bash: syntax error near unexpected token `)'
    I did everything to the letter. What are the drivers that Adam is speaking about when he says: First, make sure the drivers from your BlackBerry 10 phone have been installed onto your Mac. ? I have the latest OS on my Z10 and I downloaded the playbook_tool, followed the instructions to the letter. Is there anything that has to be changed in the playbook_tools that I should do?


    Do you have the BB Link software installed on your desktop?


    can it be that BB link is not connecting properly with my device?


    when I connect my device to my mac I get a message: Server Connections Interrupted


    Could be. I'd try re-installing BB Link and then connect your phone via USB to your computer and make sure the phone recognizes that it is attached to your computer.


    done and done and still the same result.


    Sorry to hear that. I'm out of ideas...


    I had the same issue, until I fixed the case of -device switch from -Device to all lowercase. Don't know if that will fix your issue but that's what I did to get mine to work.


    Hello from a very happy me!! I did what you said bjnesbitt but it didn't work.
    I did get an update for my java last night and I changed my IP address from the default to another and used the
    BB10 Sideload Android App as instructed (like I did before) and it worked. It could have been the change in IP of my device
    or the java update but I am up and running. Thank you both for helping :)


    Hi kraems17,

    Thanks so much for you automator app. I was having trouble when I was using the script command from Adam, but your automator worked fine. I compared the command strings and found the difference was that in Adam's command string, I needed to add the following pretext: cd $HOME/Playbook_Tools/ &&

    Will have my kids try out the Snapchat now and give a review.


    Thanks Kraems17 I was hoping someone would save a few steps.


    Hey so I've sideloaded onto my playbook before with no issue, but I just got my Z10 today and when I try to sideload I'm getting an error message that reads like this:

    Error: Cannot connect: Connection to refused. You may have to reboot the target.

    Anyone have any suggestions? Oh, I have a mac btw, but again, it's the same mac that i've successfully sideloaded onto my playbook with. Let me know if you can help!

    Jehad AlAyed

    I had the same issue. And I did what it tells me " You may have to reboot the target" and I just restarted the device and it worked after that.


    really none of this works for me!!!! seriously it doesn't
    fucking macbook....can anyone help?


    i have a macbook and no matter how many times i tried it this wouldn't work for me, the best thing and easiest thing for me was to download google chrome and install this extension:

    its so much easier than using the terminal, just plug your bb10 or playbook into your laptop before trying to install, make sure development mode is enabled and just type your password in when it asks... everything is pretty strait forward after that

    hope i helped :)

    Todd Hooper


    Thank you SO much for posting this here. I also tried every method listed above meticulously, to no avail. This extension worked perfectly on the first try. It also provides better feedback and status throughout the process. (including a log of which apps you have installed so far)

    Excellent. Thank you. I might actually sleep tonight now. :)


    Thank you!!!


    Thanks! This worked perfectly


    I've tried this like ten times! The automator doesnt work, terminal doesnt work.....seriously what works?! So tired of this bs.
    Here's my pin: 266FC38E
    please and thankyou.

    Paul Smith4

    IM lost
    why is ther a vid to help like windows though :/


    tried windows 8 & mac.. keep getting this error
    Connection to refused. You may have to reboot the target.

    Did a reebot & everything.,. still nothing.


    Try to change the adresse by the one you will find by the following steps:
    Network connections>Wi-FI>
    Click on "Advanced"
    Under "Diagnostic Information" select "Internet connection"

    Copy the IP Address written.

    Try again the same procedure but with this new IP adress.

    Best regards,

    Ps: Sorry for my english


    attention guys with the MACBOOK: this freaking WORKS! thanks alot buddy man :D

    Ruslan Botsyurko

    This helped me solve the same issue, thanks very much skan010!


    This worked! thank you skan010! :)


    result::failure 500 unpack requires a string argument of length 22
    I am using Mac.


    What does "failure -9" mean when i side load an app with my mac?


    Couldn't do it :( I got confused when you said "Unzip it" didn't know what to do :(


    I don't have the apps on my Mac! Do I have to download it first? And where from?

    Mac Bauer

    I keep getting this message Unable to access jarfile BarDeploy.jar can anyone help me out?


    You need to run the terminal command from the same directory as the files. cd /user/playbook_tools


    what does this mean??
    -bash: syntax error near unexpected token `)'
    Can someone help?


    sorry for the dumbass comment...

    but does anyone have an updated version of the file? cant login due to it being outdated :(


    and to uninstall just type java -Xmx512M -jar BarDeploy.jar -uninstallApp -device DEVICE_IP -password DEVICE_PASSWORD


    did the hole process after it finished looking all good I check my bb z10 and no sings of instagram
    do /i have to reset de z10??

    Mohamed Anis Osmanbhoy

    I get a remark " unable to access jarfile BarDeploy.jar" what do I do


    I'm also getting this notice. How do we resolve this issue?


    I just sideloaded Netflix on my Z10 and it works great :)


    Just browsing over these comments, no novice is going to bother with this process... They will go iOS or actual Android


    Novice here and I am bothering and I am trying hard to get this side-load process done.
    It is hard when you are not tech inclined but that is why there is the forum
    and a real BB fan will not iCrap or Android. My opinion of course :)

    Garyth Evans

    Wrong you are dingster. I am a novice doing this and I got it to work in 5 minutes. It is not difficult at all.


    I think it's more easier to do this with the playbook manager extension of chrome browser, which works with OS10 (i success many install apps on my Z10), just with one click
    Enjoy it ;)


    Awesome. Just did it and worked perfectly. Many thanks.


    I've gone through the entire process with the Instagram app, and got to the final step where it installs in terminal and says result::success. But the forum ends there, so now I don't know how to physically get the app loaded onto my blackberry from terminal. Someone please help!

    Garyth Evans

    it should be on your z10 then. when I did the netflix app, after it said success, i closed the settings file on my bb and went to the pages of apps and it was the last one on the last page..


    Yes thank you! I just didnt realize how easy it was once the process was finished!

    Garyth Evans

    Just want to say that side loading is very new to me and the instructions were perfect. I successfully side loaded the Netflix app and while it is a little slow because it is not a native or properly ported app but a work around, it does work and I now have netflix on my bb z10.. Can't help anyone with instagram because I think it is a crap app and don't use it.

    ElBaby Taveras

    anyone plz help!!! im so confused download "playbook tools" but i dont know where to download the ".bar (instagram) file too! i notice on the picture he has many options in the "playbook tools" folder; mine only has like 6 n most are .bat(dont know what to do twith that). can anyone please help me! i need a dummied down quick tutorial to learn this process!

    Prysillia Halim

    I already download playbook_Tools and BB10 Sideload, but when i tried to open the side load, I'm getting an error message that reads like this :

    " Last login: Mon Apr 8 20:50:35 on ttys000
    Prysillias-iMac:~ meme_br$ cd $HOME/Playbook_Tools/ && java -Xmx512M -jar BarDeploy.jar -installApp -device -password meme0806
    -bash: cd: /Users/meme_br/Playbook_Tools/: No such file or directory
    Prysillias-iMac:~ meme_br$"

    what that text mean? and what i need to do?
    thanks a lot

    Prysillia Halim

    why the instagram can not work in my BB Z10?
    the error massage write : incompatible device. this device doesn't seem to meet the minimum camera requirements.
    can someone please give me the compatible link to download


    how do you upgrade an app that needs an upgrade on your Blackberry - once you have successfully put an Android app using the process above?


    how do you delete an app? It won't let me when I hold down and delete it from my Z10. I'm using a Mac so I have to use terminal


    I followed every step to a t and it replied "Unable to access jarfile BarDeploy.jar"


    After these steps, do I just drag and drop the App onto my BlackBerry?


    Can somebody please put a list of confirmed side loaded android apps on the Z10?


    How do i even open the .bat file? What program do i need?


    I am trying to download the app and am having trouble. The terminal page says Last login: Mon Apr 29 16:53:05 on ttys000
    Deborah-Moskals-iMac:~ dmoskal$

    and when I put in the ed playbook_tools, it tells me that no file exists. I believe I have followed the instructions to a tee. Please help. Thanks


    aaaah me too please please help me!!!


    Hi there,

    Do I've to repeat the terminal procedure again and again if i want to install a new app?


    how do i install for multiple apps


    I'm trying this on my Q10, but I keep getting "Error: Cannot connect: Connection to refused. You may have to reboot the target."

    Dean Zuhri

    I'm having the exact issue. I've reboot my Z10 but it doesn't help.


    I couldent get The Chrome extension to work so I did it thru The terminal at my MacBook. It was pretty easy and workt out fine. Just follow The text above and you'll be fine


    when i wrote "cd playbook_tools" and press enter, it says to me -"bash: cd: playbook_tools: No such file or directory".. i don't understand why..


    You need to move the folder from downloads to the directory named after your computer. Usually the one that holds the downloads folder


    Adam, when following your tutorial, the terminal returned errors
    when I tried to install the .bar app!

    Luckily the fix was place the .bar file in the lib folder, and run
    your command and it worked fine for me?

    Also we must remember to read the instructions.txt file to change
    the PB-Installer.bat file to match the IP and password on phone.



    I'm getting the following error when I enter it in the terminal. Any advice?

    Exception in thread "main" java.lang.NoClassDefFoundError: org/apache/http/client/HttpClient
    Caused by: java.lang.ClassNotFoundException: org.apache.http.client.HttpClient
    at Method)
    at java.lang.ClassLoader.loadClass(
    at sun.misc.Launcher$AppClassLoader.loadClass(
    at java.lang.ClassLoader.loadClass(


    All this is cool, really, I was so moved when the terminal "turned it magic" (thank you for this great moment) BUT INSTAGRAM IS NOT WORKING, bouh !!


    I can seem to figure out why this error code is coming up..

    This is what my terminal window looks when the error code comes up:

    starsaflame:playbook_tools vlafo098$ java -Xmx512M -jar BarDeploy.jar -installApp -device 169.254. -password bababerry
    Error: Host name may not be null

    Can anyone help solve this mystery?

    Karen Mejia

    Can the BlackBerry Q10 use the file maker pro on a mac computer as the
    BlackBerry Bold?


    hi i am trying to install an android app on my Z10 by following the instruction -Xmx512M -jar BarDeploy.jar -installApp -device I've hide the password and ip add.
    but im getting this error Sending Install request...
    Info: Action: Install
    Info: File size: 1819868
    Info: Installing ...
    Info: Processing 1819868 bytes
    result::failure 500 cannot determine Package-Id

    can you please help or advice a solution



    If your on a BES and IT Policy has disabled DEV mode is there a work around to access or copy file to SD card and move it once in the device?


    This works for installing via Mac.
    Thumbs up for this information and easy to follow instructions.
    I'm trying to get a credit card reader loaded onto my Q10 and as an experiment, I downloaded .bar files from these forums and I also downloaded the most recent .bar files from an online APK to Bar converter.
    Everything loaded onto my Q10, which was great to see.. but not one of them worked.. instagram (message: "not the correct type of camera") Shazam, Opera, snap chat.. all of them had error messages.
    I appreciate all of your time to show us this though..