If I am installing an application in windows, I will be downloading the exe and clicking the exe will install the application. Even if I uninstall the application, I can reinstall the application from the downloaded exe.

Now, if I am downloading an app from play store, it is downloading and installing. Will the downloaded apps will be saved in some other space and then installed, if yes where will be the application while downloading? I know the installed application will be in data/app/. I am asking while downloading, and what happens once installation, will the downloaded app be deleted.

  • I know the installed application will be in data/app/. For Android 4.x.x. this folder has the APK (installable) while /data/data and other /data/*** has the files installed from the apk. In short, these apk's are the alternatives for the exe as you mentioned. I also found that PlayStore downloads directly into this folder. There may be other folders but I know for sure about this. And my experience is based on Google Stock Rom and Cyanogenmod.
    – Firelord
    Commented Mar 1, 2015 at 19:12

1 Answer 1


In older Android OS versions the apk files downloaded by Google Play Store were usually stored in either /cache/download or /data/local directories.

Now the temporary location is determined by the Download Provider service, and is usually found in /data/data/com.android.providers.downloads/cache directory. Again, this may be different for various Android OS versions. It can also vary if manufacturers modified the OS (e.g. Samsung's TouchWiz or HTC's Sense.)

  • So once the installation is over this file will be deleted?
    – samnaction
    Commented Apr 27, 2014 at 5:30
  • The files stick around for a bit, until the clean up process deletes them.
    – Chahk
    Commented Apr 27, 2014 at 14:29
  • Can I delete the whole content of data/data/com.android.provider.downloads/cache ?
    – franc
    Commented May 23, 2018 at 13:09
  • Whocares, i did delete and since that no problems. Got 300 mb free space in my system, that is crucial on that SGS2, i have to use these days (only).
    – franc
    Commented May 24, 2018 at 13:40

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