In this guide, you will learn about various aspects of ES File Explorer important for a FireStick user. It is a freemium file manager app that is available on Amazon Store and can be downloaded on FireStick, FireTV Cube, Fire Stick 4K, and other Fire TV devices.
ES File Explorer is an incredibly popular file manager app for the Android platform. This multi-utility tool can be used for storage management, sideloading apps on FireStick (requires premium subscription), connect to cloud drives and more.
I believe that ES File Explorer is a FireStick essential and a must-have if you want to manage your device better.
: Sideloading is now part of the premium version of the ES File Explorer app ($9.99 per month). It is no longer available for free.
Also read: Best apps for FireStick.
- 1 What is ES File Explorer?
- 2 Benefits of ES File Explorer for FireStick Users
- 3 How to install ES File Explorer on FireStick
- 4 How to sideload apps with ES File Explorer using direct links
- 5 How to sideload apps from your computer and transfer files
- 6 Connect to cloud drives (Google Drive, OneDrive, Dropbox etc.)
- 7 Clean up FireStick storage using ES File Explorer
- 8 Wrapping Up
What is ES File Explorer?
As I said, ES File Explorer is a file manager application, which also doubles as an excellent side-loading utility for FireStick.
ES File Explorer is available via Amazon Store. I have provided the installation instructions later in this guide.
This app lets you sideload third-party APKs with web URLs. However, to sideload apps, you require a premium subscription that costs $9.99 per month.
You may also connect your FireStick to a computer via ES File Explorer to sideload APKs and even transfer files back and forth. Again, I have provided step-by-step instructions to sideload apps using this app
Benefits of ES File Explorer for FireStick Users
ES File Explorer offers tons of utilities. However, there are plenty of features most FireStick users will probably never use. Therefore, I am prioritizing and highlighting the benefits that you are more likely to use. If you want help with any specific utility not mentioned in this guide, please feel free to let us know via the comments section below.
Here are the key benefits of ES File Explorer for FireStick users:
– Sideload third-party apps via direct link (premium subscription required)
– Sideload third-party apps using a computer
– Clean up FireStick storage by deleting unnecessary files, such as unused APKs
– Transfer files between FireStick and computer
– Connect to cloud services such as Google Drive, OneDrive, Dropbox, etc
How to install ES File Explorer on FireStick
This is easy. ES File Explorer is available on Amazon Store. Follow these steps to install it within minutes:
– Go to the home window of FireStick
Select the lens icon in the top-left corner
– Type the name of the app ES File Explorer
– ES File Explorer will appear in the search results when you have typed the first few letters
– Click ES File Explorer icon on the next window
– Click Get or Download (depending upon what you see)
– Wait while the app is installed
– Click Open to run the app
You may run the app later from Your Apps & Channels section
ES File Explorer is one of the most effective sideloading tools for FireStick I have ever used. You just need to do is provide the direct link pointing to the APK you wish to download.
Note: Sideloading is no longer free with ES File Explorer. It is now available only with a premium subscription ($9.99 per month). If you don’t have a premium subscription, use the Downloader app to sideload third-party apps on FireStick.
Important!!! ES File Explorer can ONLY download APKs from the links pointing directly to the APK location on the web. If you have a link to a webpage, you can use the Downloader app to sideload apps.
I am using Cinema HD app in this demonstration. Here are the steps:
Attention FireStick Users: Read before you continue
Governments and ISPs across the world monitor their users' online activities. If found streaming copyrighted content on your Fire TV Stick, you could get into serious trouble. Currently, your IP is visible to everyone. I strongly recommend you to get a good FireStick VPN and hide your identity so that your movie viewing experience doesn’t take a bad turn.
I use ExpressVPN which is the fastest and most secure VPN in the industry. It is very easy to install on any device including Amazon Fire TV Stick. Also, it comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. If you don't like their service, you can always ask for a refund. ExpressVPN also has a special deal where you can get 3 months free and save 49% on annual plan.
Here are the reasons why you must use a VPN all the time.
1- Open ES File Explorer
On its main window, you may either click Downloader on the right OR Tools > Download Manager on the left
2- On the bottom, click +New
3- Enter the desired URL in the Path box (I am using https://www.firesticktricks.com/cinema)
Make sure you type the full URL including ‘https://’
You may leave the Name field blank or use any name of your choice
Click the button Download Now
4- Now, we wait! The APK will download
5- Once APK has been downloaded, click the option Open file
6- Now click Install
7- Click Install again
9- Now just wait for the App installed notification
Click DONE to use the app later or click OPEN to use it now
That will be all!
How to sideload apps from your computer and transfer files
As I mentioned earlier, ES File Explorer can be used to sideload APKs stored on your computer. You can transfer other types of files between your FireStick and Computer. Here are the steps:
1- Select Settings on the top from the FireStick home window
2- Go to My Fire TV
3- Choose Developer Options
4- Turn ON ADB debugging
Important!! ADB debugging must be turned ON for ES File Explorer to connect to your computer
5- Open ES File Explorer
6- Either click View on PC on the right OR click Network > View on PC in the left menu
7- Click TURN ON
8- You should now see an FTP address (like the image below shows ftp://192.168.1.6:3721/)
9- On your computer: Open any folder and enter the above FTP link in the address bar
10- On your computer: You will see all the FireStick folders here
11- On your computer: You can now transfer any files between FireStick and computer
You can transfer media files such as music, video, and images too. However, keep the limited storage capacity of FireStick in mind
If you want to sideload APKs on FireStick that are stored on your computer, follow the next steps
12- On your computer: Copy the desired APK file in one of the FireStick folders (say, the Download folder)
13- Get back to ES File Explorer on FireStick
14- Click Local > Home (second Home option) in the left menu (or Internal Storage on the top)
15- On the right, open the FireStick folder in which you copied the APK file (say Download) folder
16- Click the APK file
17- Click Install
18- Click Install again
19- Wait for the app to install
So, this is how you transfer files or sideload APKs from your computer onto your FireStick using ES File Explorer
Connect to cloud drives (Google Drive, OneDrive, Dropbox etc.)
The ability to connect with your cloud drives is one of the most exciting features of ES File Explorer. Cloud drive connectivity lets you access images, videos, and even the APK files saved in the cloud.
This is an excellent way of gaining access to your files without having to save them on your limited FireStick storage
If you have the cloud drive synced with your computer, you could copy the APK files to the drive and access it on FireStick via ES File Explorer.
In other words, you can sideload apps on FireStick via your cloud drive
ES File Explorer supports all the major cloud services including Google Drive (Gdrive), OneDrive, DropBox, Box, SugarSync, S3, MediaFire, Yandex, and Baidu NetDisk
Note: You CAN sign in to multiple cloud drives. For instance, you can use Gdrive and OneDrive together. You may also sign in with two different accounts for the same drive
Here are steps to connect to your cloud drive:
– Open ES File Explorer
– Click Cloud Drive on the right OR click Network > Cloud Drive in the left menu
– If you want to use Google Drive, click Log in to Google Drive button
If you have any other supported cloud drive account, click Log in with other cloud drive
– Choose the cloud drive you want to use (say OneDrive)
– Follow the on-screen instructions to sign in
– To access your signed-in cloud drives, go back to the main window of ES File Explorer and click Cloud Drive on the right OR click Network > Cloud Drive in the left menu
– You will see the icons for all your signed-in cloud drives. If you want to add another cloud drive, click the Plus (+) sign
– You may now access all your cloud drive folders
Clean up FireStick storage using ES File Explorer
Storage management is another key aspect of the ES File Explorer app, especially since FireStick comes with limited storage.
You can easily delete all the unwanted and unnecessary files. For instance, you may delete the APK files after installing the third-party apps. Once the app has been installed, APK files become redundant
Remember that this needs to be done manually. Here are the steps:
1- Run ES File Explorer
2- Click Local > Home (2nd one) in the left menu OR click where it says Internal Storage on the top
3- FireStick folders appear on the right. Open the folder in which the files you need to delete are stored (let’s say the Download folder)
4- Select the file you wish to delete (say an APK file)
Note: DO NOT click the selected file
5- Now, hold down the Select button on your FireStick remote (the circular button) until the checkmark appears on the bottom-right of the file
6- Navigate to the bottom menu of ES File Explorer and click Delete
7- Uncheck Move to recycle bin
This is how you delete the files on FireStick with ES File explorer
That’s pretty much it about ES File Explorer FireStick app. It has many other features and utilities we haven’t talked about in this guide. If you are looking for help with something specific, please contact us via the comments section below.
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