AltStore is an unofficial app installer for iPhones and iPad. While it offers some built-in apps and games for you to download, it also makes it much easier for you to find and install your files from the internet. It is free to use and you don’t have to jailbreak so keep reading for all the details.
How to Download AltStore:
You will need to use your PC or Mac to install AltStore on your iOS device and you will need a companion app called AltServer. If you are a Windows user, your iTunes must come from Apple and not from the Microsoft app store. Here are the links to download it:
Now you can download AltServer
- Plug your iPhone or iPad into your computer
- Open your desktop browser and go to the AltStore website
- Download AltServer, the companion app, onto your computer
- Windows – launch your icon tray and click on AltServer. Hover over Install AltStore and click your connected device
- Mac – launch your toolbar and click on AltStore. Click Install AltStore and click on your connected device
- Wait for AltStore to finish installing on your device and you will see the app icon
Whenever you download apps or games onto your device, your computer needs to be left switched on with AltServer running and your device connected. This can be done with the cable or using iTunes Wi-Fi Sync with your device and computer on the same internet network.
How to Use AltStore:
- Launch AltStore
- When you see the Untrusted Developer error, go to Settings > General > Profiles; tap the developer name and tap Trust
- In AltStore, tap on Settings > Account. Use your Apple ID to sign in
- Tap on the browser and search for an app or game
- Tap the app title to see what it is about or tap FREE to install it
- When you see the app icon on your home page, your app is ready to use.
How to Install External IPA Files:
- Using your browser, download the IPA file you want onto your device
- Find the file and tap the AltStore icon
- AltStore will open and the app will be signed and installed
- Alternatively, open AltStore and click the + icon
- Find the file you downloaded, click it and it will be installed.
- The installed app will be on your home screen and in AltStore, under My Apps
AltStore Pros and Cons
Like every other application, AltStore has its pros and cons:
- You don’t need to jailbreak
- The app certificates cannot be revoked because you are self-signing the apps
- Choose between pre-installed apps or sideload your own from the internet
- You can only have 3 working apps on your device at any one time and one of those will be AltStore
- You need your computer and a companion app called AltServer to install AltStore and your device must be connected by cable or iTunes Wi-Fi Sync to download apps and update
- Your apps need refreshing at least once a week to stop them from crashing
Frequently Asked Questions
These are the answers to the commonly asked questions, telling you all you need to know about AltStore.
What is AltStore?
AltStore is an unofficial app store offering the chance to create developer certificates so you can install unofficial content
Is it a Jailbreak?
No. You also do not need to install a jailbreak to use it; it is purely an unofficial app store allowing you to install unsigned apps and games
How Does AltStore Work?
AltStore is the brainchild of Riley Testut. It was built using an Apple-provided feature that lets developers test apps before they put them in the app store. Using this allows you self-sign the apps which is why you need to provide your Apple ID and why you can only have two active apps plus AltStore on your device at any one time.
What Apps Can I Download?
In AltStore, there are not many pre-installed apps but the developer is planning on adding more with future updates. The most popular downloads are:
- Happy Chick Emulator
- Chimera Jailbreak
But don’t forget; you can also download IPA files from the internet and use AltStore to install them on your iPhone or iPad.
How Should I Use AltStore?
The developer recommends you use it in this way:
- Have AltStore set to open automatically when your computer is turned on/logged in.
- When you are not using your computer, place it in sleep mode and, when possible, leave your device connected. This way, iOS can wake your apps and refresh them.
- Try to open AltStore at least once per week so iOS can prioritize the apps and refresh them.
Download AltStore on your device today. Although it doesn’t have many apps, you can download whatever you want from the internet, making it one of the most versatile, free third-party app stores.