Deleting and reinstalling an iOS app


Q: I want to delete an app and download a fresh copy to my device. However, when I go to the App Store and locate the app, it has the iCloud icon next to it. How do I cleanse this app off of everything so that I can download a clean, fresh copy?

Deleting and reinstalling an iOS app

– Paul

A: The iCloud icon simply indicates that you have previously purchased the app and can therefore download it again from iTunes in the Cloud without having to re-purchase it. The present of this icon actually indicates that app is not on your device; for apps that are already installed, an “Open” button should appear instead, providing a direct link for opening the app in question.

You can reinstall your application from here by tapping on the iCloud icon. Unless the app in question actually stores its data in iCloud this is all that you actually need to do in order to start with a fresh copy. Most apps actually do not use iCloud for data storage, and the iCloud icon you see in the App Store refers to the fact that the application is available from iTunes in the Cloud, not whether it stores any data in iCloud.


Deleting and reinstalling an iOS app

If you’re unsure whether an app has any data stored in iCloud, you can check this by going into your iOS Settings app and selecting iCloud, Storage & Backup, Manage Storage. This will display a list of all applications with data stored in iCloud. You can tap on any app to see what data it is storing, and use the “Edit” button in the top-right corner of the detail screen to remove that data from your device and the iCloud servers.


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Jesse Hollington

Jesse Hollington was a Senior Editor at iLounge. He's written about Apple technology for nearly a decade and had been covering the industry since the early days of iLounge. In his role at iLounge, he provided daily news coverage, wrote and edited features and reviews, and was responsible for the overall quality of the site's content.