How to delete apps on an iPad (and save their data)

Use the ‘Offload App’ feature on an iPad to save an app’s data before you delete it. Steven John/Business Insider

  • You can delete unwanted apps on an iPad to free up space on your device, allowing for more storage and clearing clutter on your home screen.
  • You can also use the “Offload App” feature on an iPad to archive an app’s data before deleting it.
  • If you delete an app on your iPad and later decide you want it back, you can re-install it from the App Store.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

An app-cluttered home screen on an iPad makes using the device much less pleasant, forcing you to comb through dozens of little icons in search of Instagram, your calendar, or some other app that you actually use.

You can delete unwanted apps on your iPad to clean up the home screen’s appearance and improve your interface experience. It also frees up storage space so you can save more photos, songs, videos, and other downloads, and for other apps. With more free space, you won’t have to worry about waiting to download a new app or app update.

There are two ways to delete apps from an iPad, but before we do the step-by-step, note that if you accidentally delete a paid app (or later change your mind and want an intentionally removed app back), you can sign in to the App Store, navigate to the list of purchased apps, and reinstall apps without a charge.

Any data stored within the app, such as levels beaten in a game, will be lost, though, so delete with care. You can also check the game’s settings to see whether it allows for progress backups over iCloud, though not all games allow this.

How to delete apps on an iPad

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Tap ‘X’ to delete. Steven John/Business Insider

1. Open up your iPad and swipe to the screen with the app (or apps) that you want to delete.

2. Gently press down on the first app to be removed, holding your finger in place until all apps on the screen begin wiggling.

3. A grey circle with an “X” will have appeared at the top left corner of the app; tap it, and then hit the red word “Delete” to complete the process.

4. Repeat as needed to delete other apps, then press the home button.

Note that if an “X” does not appear on an app while it jiggles, it cannot be deleted.

How to delete apps on an iPad and save their data using the “Offload App” feature

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You can offload an app through the iPad’s settings. Steven John/Business Insider

If you want to delete multiple apps at once, or you want to “Offload” an app – removing it from the iPad but archiving its data, allowing you to pick up where you left off if you reinstall the app – you should go through this process instead of the tap-hold-jiggle-X deletion.

1. Open your iPad’s settings (the icon looks like black gears on a grey box).

2. Tap the “General” tab.

3. Tap “iPad Storage.”

4. Scroll down to find a list of apps and tap the one in question.

5. Tap “Delete App” then confirm by hitting “Delete.”

6. Alternately, hit “Offload App” and then confirm by hitting “Offload App,” as depicted below.

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‘Offload App’ in Settings. Steven John/Business Insider

The app deletion process will take a matter of seconds once you are comfortable with it, so don’t hesitate to clear away unused apps and free up space. And for the record, the same process of deleting an app of an iPad can be used to remove them from iPhones and iPod Touches, as well.

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