The moment you see “Parse Error” when you are trying to install an app on your phone know that you cannot install the app as you are having an issue with the app package name. It’s either your phone installer is unable to identify the package name or your phone antivirus is blocking the app package name.
It’s also possible that the file name is corrupt or the app version is not compatible with your device OS version.
To fix this error message you have to make your phone recognize the app package name to clear the popup parse error message on your Android. This may occur when you want to install an app from either play store or from an APK website.
The implication of the parse error on Android is that you either download another version of the app with a correct package name or fix the issue with your phone to recognize the app package name so that the phone installer will be able to recognize the app Pname.
What Causes Parse Error on Android?
You will be wondering why you seeing the error message despite that the app is downloaded from a reliable source like Play Store or Amazon store. Well, it’s not that the app is virus effect or anything else, the following can contribute to the reason why you are seeing the parse error message on your Android screen when you are trying to install a certain app.
- Incomplete download of APK app can cause parse error when you want to install the app
- The app is not compatible with your phone OS. Some apps only support Android 5.1 above and when you try to install it on Android 5.0 it’ll return the parse error message because it doesn’t support it.
- Your phone antivirus is blocking APK file or seeing it as a virus. This is very common on Windows with Windows Defender. You cannot download cracked software on PC when your Windows Defender is active for those using Windows OS.
- Install apps from unknown sources disabled
These are the common reason why the error message will keep coming up when you try to install an APK app on your Android device.
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How to Fix Parse Error on Android Phone
When are guilty of the above reasons you will have issues parsing APK app package on your Android phone. The parsing error will keep coming until the necessary action is taken to rectify the problem.
To fix the error parsing message on your Android device follow these steps.
Enable Install Apps from Unknown Sources
When install from unknown sources is disabled you can only install apps on your Android phone from play store. This is a step by step procedure to enable install apps from unknown sources.
This will allow you to install APK files
- Go to phone settings
- Click on security
- Scroll to unknown sources and click on it
- Enable it
In some phones, unknown sources are hidden under privacy instead of security. Therefore, to enable install from unknown sources, go to privacy >> unknown sources >> enable.
Enable USB Debugging
During a workaround, I found that enabling USB debugging also fix this problem. By default, you do not need to enable debugging to install APK app on Android phones, however, when the error parse message comes up, enabling debugging is a place to start with.
- Go to phone settings
- Click on About phone
- Double tab your phone build number to enable developer mode
- Go to developer mode and enable it
- Scroll down and enable USB debugging
For most phones, the above approach works to enable developer mode. However, if you were unable to enable your phone developer mode with this approach, go to Google search engine and type phone model plus developer mode. E.g, Infinix Note 5 + Developer mode.
Re-Download the APK File
Check whether the APK download is not damaged. Best-bet, go back to the download site to re-download the APK file and try to re-install it. If the error message is caused by incomplete download them you will be able to install it.
In the file description, check for compatible OS so that it won’t be a waste of effort trying to fix the parsing error to later find out that the error was caused by incompatible OS version.
Also, make sure that the downloaded APK file is ended with a .apk extension so that your phone will be able to recognize it as an APK file.
Clear Google Play Store Cookies
This is peculiar to when you are having parsing error when you try to install apps from play store and the error message popups that the phone installer is unable to parse the app.
- Go to phone settings
- Click on Apps or Application manager
- Go to all apps
- Search for Google play store app
- Click on it and tap storage
- Click on clear caches
With this procedure, the parsing error message should disappear when next you try to download and install apps from Google play store.
It can be very disheartening when you want to install a specific app and you see parse error message after you have wasted almost 100MB worth of mobile data. So, before you delete the app or try to download a new copy after you have checked from compatibility, try to use the methods shared above to fix the problem and try to install again.