How to fake Android to think you have a different device

Share Button

MarketHelper

How many times do you want to install a nice app or game, but when you go to Google Play you discover that is not compatible with your device? Here’s few quick tips to install it anyway.

Easy way

 

We know that sometimes developers on Google Play restrict compatibility to some devices because they are not perfectly optimized for that device.

In other cases developers restrict installation of the app only from a specific country.

We now have the way to fake Google Play to think you have different device and even let it think we are from a different country with a different operator.

The app is called Market Helper and it requires root permission to work.

The first thing you have to do is to setup your phone to install from apk package because Market Helper is not available on Google Play.

You can just follow this short video:

 

Now that you can install an app from an apk file we need to download Market Helper apk from the following link:

http://codekiem.com/2013/02/13/market-helper/

 

Look for the link to download and install it. After you run you’ll see the following screen:

MarketHelper2

You can setup one of the phones/tablet from the list and a country/operator and tap on Activate. It will ask you for root permission.

MarketHelper3

After few seconds it will show something like this:

MarketHelper4

 

You now need to go to the Google Dashboard to update the change you did. You just tap on the link and it will open Google Dashboard.

It may be required 1-5 minutes to detect the new device.

You can now go to Google Play website and choose Settings from the icon on the right side of the screen:

MarketHelper5

As you can see my Galaxy Nexus is now a Galaxy S3 and my carrier is now Sprint.

MarketHelper6

 

If you want to restore your previous settings you just need to select Restore to everything and tap Activate. You always need to go to Google Dashboard to update your change.

 

Advanced way

 

While this app is easy and nice it does work only to fake Google Play to think you have a different device.

If you want to fake apps and games and you are brave enough I’ll show you an advanced way to do so.

We are going to change a system file called Build.prop. We need to be very carefully because it can create serious problem to your Android device.

You need first to install a file explorer. I’m going to use ES File Explorer File Manager:


logo-app
ES File Explorer File Manager

ES Global
Free   
pulsante-google-play-store
pulsante-appbrain
qrcode-app

 

You now need to give root permission. Open ES File Explorer File Manager and tap on the top left side of the screen.

Buildprop2

Now tap on Tools

Buildprop3

and turn On the Root Explorer option.Buildprop4

To be able to edit files under /system folder you have make it writable. You can do that by tapping on Root Explorer and choosing Mount R/W, then change /system to be RW:

Buildprop7

You can now navigate to /system and you’ll see the file build.prop.

I suggest to make a backup by long pressing on it, then Copy, then navigate into your sdcard folder and tap Paste.

We can now edit it by tapping on build.prop under /system folder and choosing ES Note Editor when the system will ask which app to use.

As you can see the file has a lot of information about your device. This info are used by Android to detect informations on the current device.

When an app request to Android information about the device, Android will pick that information from this file.

You need to change the following parameters:

  • ro.product.model (The name of the device model)
  • ro.product.manufacturer (The name of the manufacturer)

I’ll change it to fake Nexus 4:

Buildprop6

We now have to reboot the device and go to Google Dashboard to let Google Play detect your new device:

https://www.google.com/settings/dashboard

 

Here’s a screenshot of Google Play detecting my device as a Nexus 4! :)

Buildprop8

 

Any apps and games will detect your device as the one you configured, but this doesn’t mean every app will work.

Some apps are specifically implemented for some devices and maybe your device can’t run them.

Anyway you can always try and see if it works! :)

 

Share Button

16 comments on “How to fake Android to think you have a different device

  1. ak

    omg…your entire system is in Comic Sans

    • megasoft78

      Yes,
      I just install it when I was using an app to change font.
      I know most of users on internet hate Comic Sans but it’s just a font. :)

    • tqa

      Hah, I was about to write my concerns about Comic Sans.

      No, we dont hate it, its probably good for some purposes, but highly impractical as UI font. Just imagine how “productive” you’ll be if you set Comic Sanc for Eclipse…

  2. john

    I have a galaxy note 8 i use as a phone, but my network wont let me use internet on it as they say its a tablet.
    so they want me to use a broadband internet sim which i cant use as a phone.

    could i use this to disguise my note 8 as say a note 3?

    to get this to work?

    • megasoft78

      I have no idea. You could try anyway! :)

  3. androidID

    Hi!!!

    Nice post, but I have a question. If I want to download an app several times, using different devices, does Market Helper would help me, or do I need to change my android ID, to download an app several times using different accounts?

    Thanks a lot!!!

    • megasoft78

      I think it will track downloads using Google account.

  4. Andy

    Awesome Work !!!

    Super Like !!!

  5. turkeydiddledoodle

    Hey I have a Droid X running gingerbread, it says that i cant turn on root explorer “Test Failed. This feature cannot be used on your device” …any tips on a way around that?

    • megasoft78

      Has you device root permissions?

  6. Duuhhh

    Doesnt work…!

    • megasoft78

      Doesn’t work is too generic. Could you explain what exactly is not working?

      • Jason

        i’ve used second way too. in fact i knew about this long before. i’m trying to get an certain feature of an app to work. which only supports the note 4 (N910G) model but i have the (N910U) not sure how i can spoof the model number. i tried changing everywhere in build.prop form n910 to n910g including spoofing the firmware version to that of the n910G. still doesn’t seem to work. (the model number and everything appears in the settings app. but app doesn’t seem to change anything )

      • FS

        is there a way to play 4.3 apps in 4.2 android? since both are jelly bean… i don’t know if you can use glTools or something similar.

  7. boxes and tv's

    Any idea how to spoof the play store in to thinking im a Nexus Player… basically an Android TV device. I have a tv box and wouldn’t mind the TV style apps..

  8. Arpa

    Hey there, I tried changing the names in the build file, but it says an error occurred in saving the doc, you’ve got any idea why it says so, and I entered a phone name and model name that doesn’t exist, I hope it ain’t the problem.
    Looking forward for your reply,
    Thanks!

Leave a Reply to Duuhhh Cancel Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Related Posts

Follow us on

Facebook

Twitter

Google+

How good are you at finding Synonyms and Antonyms? Click on the image to found out!