Getting a “package file invalid” error when trying to download apps? Google’s working on a fix


Google Play Store wm watermark

Over the past few days, folks have reported not being able to properly download and update some apps through the Google Play Store. A “package file invalid” message comes up in the notifications tray, and the download proceeds to fail.

Yours truly has been seeing the issue as well, with the latest Twitter update failing to download as recently as last night. Thankfully, it hasn’t taken Google long to acknowledge the issue. The company says that it is looking into providing a permanent solution (we would hope it’s permanent, Google), though a solid workaround does not exist.

Unfortunately that means we don’t get any sort of timeline as to when the issue will be fixed, but it’s one Google will obviously place near the top of its list of priorities. Any updates in regards to this issue will be updated at this post, so be sure to keep an eye on it everyday for more information.

[Thanks, Juan!]

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. I’ve had this issue for months

    1. Only weeks for me, but it’s getting worse(or at least more noticeable due to accumulation)

  2. I had this problem last night downloading a large update (>500MB). I attributed it to a lack of storage space, so I freed some up and tried again, successfully. Guess that wasn’t the issue?

    1. It might have been the issue in your case. In my experience, any update that fails, continues to fail. I have 3 updates that fail on all 3 of the devices have them installed. Tried clearing cache, no dice. Tried uninstalling the app, and now I can’t re-install it. Seems a little crazy.

  3. It looks like they have stopped pushing the new Play Store update as well. My guess is they will released a bug fix version soon.

  4. I had this problem on my nexus 4 and 7. Sign out of your Google account on Ur device then sign back in. Fixed the problem.

  5. I’ve had this issue for last couple weeks now as well. I found it interesting that the issue with only occur if I was connected to wifi (home or work) , but if I connected my tmobile GS4 to the 4G network the installation would work…

    1. Just tried this and it worked for me. Thanks! Weird.

  6. I just went through the amazon app store to download the kindle app when it failed to update

  7. I’ve tried changing to 4G instead of DL’ing on wifi…didn’t work.

    I’ve tried removing google account, rebooting, and readding account…didn’t work.

    Only thing that worked for me was DL’ing a VPN application (I read that hideman was good), running it, changing the country it would say I was in (I think anything other than the US is fine), and then DL’ing the application. It seemed to go a bit slower on the DL front…but it worked like a charm.

    Best of luck on finding a workaround until google fixes it!

  8. I have been getting this error on my CM9/10 HP TouchPad for a very long time. It may spawn from lack of storage space in the /system partition for me.

  9. all you have to do is download open hideman a VPN app or open a vpn and then all updates and downloads will work fine.

  10. ya i seen this issue on my S3 since 4.1.2 came out but my HTC One also on 4.1.2 does not seem to have the issue… though for anyone having the issue if you install and run Hideman VPN from the play store (if you can install it) will be able to install apps while it is running :S not sure why it works but it works 100% of the time.

    1. i stand corrected…. issue has just started effecting my HTC One…..

  11. This happened to me when I flashed PAC v23 on my GNII. I thought it was due to ROM compatibility or something not going the way I wanted to when I wiped system and data. Good to know this wasn’t just me.

  12. Seems like a timing thing to me. Tried to download Cheapcast yesterday, got the error. Then tried again last night and it was fine. Nothing changed other than the time of day.

  13. there’s an easy fix. delete your Google account from your phone and then ‘re-ad it back.

  14. This happens to me regularly for years already.

  15. I saw this error last night when trying to update play music. then I realized I was using the app store inside another app (chromecast). I then edited out of that, opened up designated play store and download proceeded normally

  16. At first I got it on my phone and was blaming it on the new ROM I just flashed. Then I received the error on my other devices as well. I kept trying to install or rebooted and installed, then it would work. Regardless of endless solutions on Google search, I knew it gotta be a problem with the PlayStore/Google Services.. Thank you Google for acknowledging the error. Hope you provide the fix soon as this is getting ridiculously annoying.

  17. I had this problem, I uninstalled the update to the play store and haven’t had a problem since :-)

  18. What background theme or UI is on the phone in the picture above? I’m digging the G-Mail without an actual icon.

  19. “Don’t worry, though — Google is aware and are looking into a fix.”
    “Google is aware”

    Funny, that’s exactly why some people worry. :P

  20. I’ve been hitting this sporadically for awhile now. I’ve found that rebooting and trying again after the boot seems to clear it up for me

  21. That’s the message when an app is corrupted or truncated from the download. I’ve created corrupted apks to see what message gets shown on trying to install them. Each apk contains CRC and length info so if those aren’t right will throw the error.

  22. If you’re having this issue just remove your Google account from the device then sign back in. had this error for a while and tried everything. That’s the only method that worked.

  23. According to some talk on XDA, it can also be caused by impropper DNS settings coming from Comcast. This was probably true in my case as switching my GNex from WiFi to 4G fixed the update as did tethering my Nexus 7 to my phones Verizon data.

    1. Yep, works here as well.

    2. Comcast DNS causes a lot of problems. I switched to OpenDNS and haven’t looked back.

  24. I must be the lucky one who hasn’t been effected yet :)

    1. You’re now screwed for posting that. :)

    2. And screwed for using improper grammar.

      1. You speak of improper grammar while starting a sentence with the word “and?”

        1. You mock the use of “and” to start a sentence, but don’t know how to properly use quotation marks and punctuation at the end of a sentence? Also, your assumption that is improper is not correct:

  25. Yea so stop calling carriers like its a network issue people…

  26. Disable wifi and use mobile data to download and install app

    1. That is how I have gotten it work as well. Works on the tablet too if I use the hotspot functionality on my phone as its internet source.

      1. That’s weird…

  27. No issues for me.

  28. “Thankfully, it hasn’t taken Google long to acknowledge the issue.” – yes it has. just google it. phones have been suffering from this issue for years.

  29. Still having this issue after the 4.3 update on my S4 GPe. Works fine through mobile but not Comcast.

  30. I’ve been getting that message randomly for months

    1. Same here. This isn’t a quick response from Google. Many of us have been seeing this for a while now.

  31. I got the error message, rebooted, and it installed fine. Might have just been luck though.

  32. Seen it for a few apps. One time I got it working by disabling WiFi and using 3G data to download an app. Another time I was able to install the app from the web site on my PC to my phone.

    1. Also, I forgot that one other app originally I tried to go to settings – apps – all – Google Play Store – Clear data. Also did this for Download Manager. I was able to get an app to install after this. This was on either my Android 4.3 Galaxy Nexus or my Android 4.3 Nexus 7 (2013).

  33. Switching from Wifi to 4g did nothing for me, but this did:
    If you clear cache/data on Google Play Store and it doesnt work, ALSO clear the data/cache on Google Play Services. That did it for me. Haven’t had a problem since I did that.

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      It might have been the issue in
      your case. In my experience, any update that fails, continues to fail.
      I have 3 updates that fail on all 3 of the devices have them installed.
      Tried clearing cache, no dice. Tried uninstalling the app, and now I
      can’t re-install it. Seems a little crazy.

  34. I thought this was just happening to me and I even emailed a developer because of it. But then I noticed it was happening to hubby as well. Thanks for this post!!

  35. android, It’s full of malware.

  36. This bug has been there since Day 1.

  37. u can uninstall the update for play store works like a charm

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