How to Download Previously Purchased Apps to Your iPhone and iPad: (part of the) Very Beginner Series

* Occasional posts will contain how-tos and/or hints for VERY new users of iPads, iPhones or Kindles. All new users welcome! Non-tech speak, not terribly detailed, just basic device-enhancing goodness. All part of this Very Beginner Series.

Please share with any beginners (Mom? Dad? Grandma?) in your life.*

photo credit: Cristiano Betta via photo pin cc

It won’t be long until the newest Apple devices hit the market. It is expected that a new iPhone is around the corner in addition to the legendary iPad Mini, which I blogged about here.

If you are thinking of possibly getting an iPad or the new Mini or an iPhone, you should understand that if you own any of these devices, your new one can share the apps that you have already purchased as long as they are on the same account. No need to buy another copy of Angry Birds or Fruit Ninja. If you bought it already, it can be installed on your new purchase.

This is one of the reasons that although I love my Kindle, I never considered a Kindle Fire for my tablet choice. I already had an iPhone, and before that an iPod touch. ALL the apps that I have acquired over the years are easily transferable to my new iPad. It seemed a terrible waste to purchase favorites for a second time for a second device, so choosing an iPad just made sense to me.

Perhaps there are several iPhones in your family (all on the same account). Your brother has a cool game on his phone, your Mom has a yoga app that you want, and your sister has a photo app on her iPad that you would like, as well.

It is very easy to add them to your iPhone. Here is how you put an already purchased app on your iPhone:

Navigate to the App store app on your iPhone.

Tap the App store icon to open it.

Tap on the “Search” button.

Search for the app that you would like to install on your phone.

Once it appears, you will see the word “install” instead of a price. It says “install” because it has already been paid for. Just tap “install” and it will be downloaded to your iPhone.

Now …. Same scenario, only this time, you want to load previously purchased apps onto your iPad.

Navigate to the App store on your iPad.

Tap the App store icon to open it.
Look down at the bottom of the screen. You will see a number of choices. Select “purchased”.

Now you will see all the apps that have ever been purchased on your account. Some will say “installed”, and those are the ones that are already on your iPad.

Some have a little symbol like this one that you see on the right. The symbol means that the app is stored in the cloud, and if you touch it, the app will download from the cloud, to your iPad.

Also notice that on the upper left corner of the page, you’ll see a tab for iPad and for iPhone. Tap that and you’ll see the apps that are on your other devices. Once again, just touch that little cloud to download the app that you want to the device that you are holding.

13 thoughts on “How to Download Previously Purchased Apps to Your iPhone and iPad: (part of the) Very Beginner Series

  1. I can’t believe how easy this was! For a year now I have been trying to figure out how to put the same apps from my son’s ipod touch on my iphone and vice versa. Thank you SO much for posting this. Will one of your series touch on how to transfer music from one device to another once purchased?
    Thank you!

    • It makes me so happy to know that I was able to be of some help! Thanks so much for letting me know. And yes, I’ll be post about music sometime soon. Thanks again for your kind words. 🙂

  2. elizabeth says:

    I have a question, I’ve always been a bit wary of downloading FREE apps because I think they are also downloading spyware. Am I right to be concerned?

    • Good question!! I am the champion of cautiousness. I never ever download things from the wild-westinternet. I don’t even like clicking on links sent to me in emails. 🙂 However, if you are IN the iTunes app store, generally things are safe. Notice I did not say “all”. There have been some nasty apps with ulterior motives. Use common sense. If an app is popular, has good, legitimate reviews (not just “great app”), and it is in the app store, it is probably fine.

  3. Bobbie says:

    I can’t believe how simple that is. I have been trying to figure this out since I bought my ipad mini 6 months ago. I hardly ever use my ipad anymore and I had tried many websites trying to find the answer to this question. What is really amazing to me is how hard it is to find the answers to these very basic questions. So glad I found U!

    • And I’m so glad that you are here! Welcome! And thank you for the very kind words. Much appreciated. This is exactly why I started this blog, so that regular people like us could enjoy and get the most out of our devices in a basic and uncomplicated way. 🙂

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