How to remove or delete any app from your iPhone or iPad

Plus: how to recover a deleted app, removing stock Apple apps, and more iOS deletion tips

How can I delete Newsstand, Stocks, Game Center and other pre-installed stock Apple apps? And can I permanently delete other apps, so they're completely wiped from my iTunes account?

We get these two question a lot. We're a nation of neat freaks, apparently, and we hate having unwanted app icons on our iPad and iPhone screens.

Here's how to delete, hide or otherwise get rid of unwanted apps and app icons.

How to delete an iOS app from your iPad or iPhone

Okay, let's start with the basic deletion process. (If you know how this works, skip ahead to the next step.)

Start your iPhone or iPad and go to the Home screen (press the Home button or make the 'five-finger claw grip' gesture.) Find the icon for the app you want to delete, and press and hold it for a few seconds. It (and all the other icons on the screen) will start to wobble gently, and a small black cross will appear by each. Tap the black cross, then confirm you want to delete the app.

The app icons start wobbling...

Press the black cross and it'll ask you to confirm the deletion

How to delete an iOS app from iTunes on your Mac

If you sync your iPhone or iPad with a Mac on a regular basis, you'll need to remove the app from the Mac too. Open iTunes, make sure you're in the library section (if you're in the iTunes Store, click on Library at the top right of the screen), then select Apps from the dropdown menu at the top left. Find the icon of the app you want rid of, right-click it and select Delete.

How to recover a deleted app

If you ever want the deleted app back, don't worry - Apple's App Store will remember that you've bought it already. Find the app on the App Store and it will offer the option to download it once again, and you won't be charged.

How can I delete an app from my App Store account?

But what if you want to remove the app from your App Store account entirely?

This might seem like an odd thing to ask, but when you're updating apps, you don't want your list of purchased apps to be clogged up with free apps you tried once then deleted.

Apple fans have been crying out for this feature for a while, but sadly at present it isn't possible.

How to remove Newsstand, Game Center and other pre-installed stock Apple apps

Not everyone likes Apple's own apps, but it's not easy to get rid of them; you can't delete Newsstand, Safari, Notes, Game Center and the rest. What we do is hide the icons for the Apple apps we don't use, in a folder called 'Apple stuff'.

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Tags iTunes StoreAppleconsumer electronicsiPhonehardware systemssmartphonestabletsiPad

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