Nexus 7 Hack: Install the AOSP Android Browser on N7


The release of Google’s ASUS manufactured affordable quad-core Nexus 7 tablet running Jelly Bean Android 4.1 saw an important change – Google has decided to use their Chrome browser as the default browser on the device, and hence the stock Android browser is missing from the device. While Chrome is quite a good browser, it unfortunately doesn’t support Flash (and never will) and is also currently under development.

Those who want the stock Android browser on their Nexus 7, be it for any reason – Flash support, stability, or just the option to have it on their device – can now do so thanks to a nifty hack posted by XDA Senior Member Censura_Umbra.

So, read on to find out you can install the stock AOSP Android browser on your Nexus 7.

How to Install AOSP Browser on Nexus 7

  1. Download the AOSP Browser’s APK file.
    Download Link  |  Filename: Browser.apk
  2. Copy the Browser.apk file to the SD card on your Nexus 7.
  3. Install ES File Explorer File Manager on your tablet from the Play Store.
  4. Open ES Explorer. Then, click the menu button on your device and click Settings. Here, tick the “Up to Root” option. Then go down and tick the “Root Explorer” option, then press Allow/Grant button when prompted to grant it root access. Then, tick the “Mount File System Option” as well. Once all three options are selected, press back to exit the settings.
  5. Browse to where you copied the Browser.apk file, long-press on it, select Copy. Then press the Up button on top till you reach the outermost folder (till it says / at the top).
  6. Then, go into /system/app folder, then press the “Paste” button on top to copy the Browser.apk file here. Important: If you see two files named browser provider.apk and browser provider.odex in /system/app, rename these files to anything else, otherwise the AOSP Browser will not work.
  7. Then, long-press on the newly copied Browser.apk file in /system/app, and click on the Properties button. Then, click on the Change button in the Properties under the Permissions section. Here, tick the Read box in front of both Group and Other. Make no other changes. The final Properties screen should look like this:
  8. Then press the OK button to change permissions, then quit ES Explorer.
  9. Then, reboot your tablet, after which you can use the stock Android browser on your Nexus 7.

The stock AOSP Android browser is now installed on your Nexus 7! Enjoy!

13 Comment

  1. flash-lover says: Reply

    not working for me. at step 4 “ES Browser” denies root access. did you forget to mention that a tablet needs to be rooted first?

    1. Kapil says: Reply

      Oh. sry for that… root guide will be up in a day.. you can use that then and go on with it.

  2. Dave says: Reply

    i also get stuck at step 4 – it says that the feature is not available for this phone.

  3. doubledove says: Reply

    Thanks! Works great on my unlocked & rooted nexus 7 v4.1.1

  4. didnt work for me should these files be in there for sure?
    browser provider.apk and browser provider.odex cause i didnt see them at all only thing even close is
    browserproviderproxy.apk.. ok i got it before i even finished this post the files we are to change are
    browserproviderproxy.apk and
    browserproviderproxy.odex.. browser is working thanks a ton for this love my tablet now stock browser and flash all is well again.

  5. nexihexi says: Reply

    Awsome! Works like a charme. But you better be rooted for this. 🙂

  6. DeVaughn curre says: Reply

    anyone having a problem updateing to jellybean 4.1.2? i suspected im having a problem updating to it because of this hack , rats

    1. Alexander says: Reply

      thats unfortunately true.

      In my case after applying these changes, update to Android 4.2 failed but I found a way to fix this problem.

      After renaming and installing the browser you will have to rename these two files (browserproviderproxy.apk and browserproviderproxy.odex) again to their original names.

      Then the update will work (at least it did in my case)

  7. grouseuk says: Reply

    Does not work on rooted 4.1.2. ‘browser has stopped working’ error.

  8. baciar1 says: Reply

    works great on rooted 4.1.2

  9. baciar1 says: Reply

    use root explorer it works

  10. Maria Evans says: Reply

    Worked well…only issue was that the bookmarks associated with my Google account don’t appear–only local. Looked under what Google is syncing, and Browser does not appear, only Chrome. I suppose I still have the Google bookmarks in Chrome, but it would be nice to have them here as well.

  11. Worked great, thank you so much

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