How to Install Apps on the Nook Glowlight Plus

How to Install Apps on the Nook Glowlight Plus calibre e-Reading Hardware Tips and Tricks It's been just over a week since Barnes & Noble launched their latest ereader. In that time the device has been hacked, the hidden web browser has been found, and now we have a way for you to install apps.

The trick will require a PC and a USB cable, and some serious technical know-how, but once you pull it off you could have an Android ereader which runs your choice of reading apps.

To install the apps, first you'll need to change a setting in a hidden menu on your Plus.

Open the Settings menu, navigate to the second page, and then open the "Software" menu. You should see an option for "Software version". Click on that three times to unlock the Plus's hidden menu.

Scroll down the screen until you see the option for "Development Options". Click that option, and when the new menu comes up check the box for "USB debugging".

Once you've done that, your next step will be to head over to XDA Forums. There you will find assistance with installing ADB on your computer, and tips on how to use that utility to install apps on your Plus.

I haven't tried this myself, but there are several reports on XDA Forums and MobileRead that this works. For example:

It took some effort involving installing Java, Android's Studio Bundle (A 1.1GB download) and re-familiarizing my self with a command prompt (how retro!) I now have Nova launcher, calibre companion, Stockfish Chess and Moon Reader pro running on my Nook.

Using Nova Launcher as the default launcher makes the NGP look like an android tablet from another manufacturer with nary a Nook reference to be found.

And a second MR member reported installing :

Installed Zeam Launcher, FBReader, Kindle and Button Savior. And I'm in business !

To put it simply, these two users have turned their proprietary B&N device into a more open Android device with a standard home screen and common third party apps like Kindle, FBReader, and Moon+.

That's great news for users!


Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.


  1. Chris Meadows30 October, 2015

    There’s just one little flaw with this trick. Putting it to any use requires actually having bought a Nook Glowlight Plus. 🙂

    1. Nate Hoffelder30 October, 2015

      har de har har

  2. fjtorres31 October, 2015

    Well, the question is, is the hardware compelling enough to drive people to buy a Nook instead of an open reader to start with?
    And what does it say that the first thing people install on hacked epub readers is other reading apps, even other epub apps?

    Anyway, since this is B&N I expect an update soon that blocks access to adb. That’s their track record, no?

  3. […] though The Digital Reader published a post called How to Install Apps on the Nook Glowlight Plus, it’s not step-by-step. Plus, prior Nooks required the Android SDK for full ADB and command […]

  4. Frank2 November, 2015

    In your fourth paragraph, it says “Open the Settings men”, the word men should instead be “menu”.

    It is neat that the GlowLight can allow other apps to be installed.

    1. Nate Hoffelder2 November, 2015

      Whoops. Fixed, it thanks!

  5. Reader29 November, 2015

    Any way to add fonts to it?

    1. Nate Hoffelder29 November, 2015

      Well, you can embed fonts in an Epub before you load it on to the Glowlight Plus, but the only instructions I could find on adding fonts involved rooting it.

      But if you go through the above steps to install apps, then you should be able to use a similar trick to have ADB install fonts on the Plus.

      Alas, I can’t tell you how; I no longer have one.

  6. […] fact, you don’t even need to root your device to install third-party apps on the NOOK Glowlight Plus. But it should open up the door for additional […]

  7. Roger Pelizzari9 September, 2016

    Any defects in the Nook Glowlight Plus?
    How is the touch responsiveness?

    Can you disable the light completely or just turn it down?


    1. Nate Hoffelder9 September, 2016

      I have not heard about any defects. And yes, you can turn the frontlight all the way off.

  8. joanne19 February, 2017

    can i install wattpad?
    if i actually do this, is there a way to undo it?

    1. Sometimes3 February, 2018

      yes, just simply uninstall the apps. Or hard reset your nook. Either way will work

  9. Paul13 July, 2017

    Computer illiterate reader here. Can anybody in the UK unlock my nook glowlight plus so that I can use fbr on it. The b&n embedded reader is not as usable and the fonts and sizes don’t suit my eyesight. Willing to pay for unlocking or rooting or whatever you tech savvy folk call it. I’m a simple plumber and programming the central heating timer is about my IT limit. Thanks. Email [email protected]

    1. Sometimes3 February, 2018

      I can do this, but i’m not in the UK. It’s really quite easy and does not really require much IT knowledge. If you can follow the tutorials that are available and able to attach your nook to your computer then you have all the knowledge that you need to do it.

  10. mike z9 September, 2017

    The new updated version there is no software version that you can tap 3 times. Nook must have changed with the updated version

    1. Sometimes3 February, 2018

      you tap on the nook icon now inside of the about section in settings

  11. Benjamin Handelman14 September, 2017

    They changed the name of the button from Software to About. It still works.


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