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Smartphones & gadgets

iPhone how-to: Remove the default apps you don’t use

Whether you buy an iOS or Android device, there will be several apps pre-installed by the manufacturers. Often referred to as bloatware, these apps don’t offer much use if you don’t need them.

Bloatware is more pervasive in Android devices than iOS, but several Apple apps could fall into that category. The last thing you need is unnecessary apps taking all the storage space on your iPhone. Tap or click here for a hidden iPhone setting that can eat up all your storage in a flash.

If you don’t have an Apple Watch or Apple TV subscription, having these applications on your device is a waste of storage space. Until recently, it was nearly impossible to remove them. Fortunately, that has changed.

Apple now lets users remove some default apps

With the latest iOS 14 and iPadOS updates, Apple has granted users the ability to remove some of its pre-installed or default apps. The functionality has been rolled out to iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and Apple Watch.

But beware, there is a major caveat with some of them.

Apple points out that when you delete its built-in apps, you will also remove all the data that is associated with that app.

If you delete the Apple TV app as an example, you won’t be able to view any content that was synced through iTunes. Similarly, if you remove the Apple Books, Maps, Music, or Podcast apps, they won’t be available to use with CarPlay.

How to delete and restore built-in apps

To remove an Apple app, the process to follow is the same as any other third-party app.

  • Touch and hold the app you want to remove
  • When the menu pops up, tap Remove App
  • Then tap Delete

Note: If you have an Apple Watch, deleting an app from your iPhone also deletes that app from your Apple Watch.

If you want to restore a previously deleted app:

  • Go to the App Store
  • Search for the exact name of the app
  • Tap Restore App
  • Once downloaded, you will be able to open it from the Home Screen

Note: If you have an Apple Watch, restoring an app to your iPhone also restores that app to your Apple Watch.

Which apps can be deleted?

Many Apple apps can be removed, but you must be aware of the implications of doing so. Some of the apps that can be deleted include:

  • Activity
  • Calculator
  • Calendar
  • Compass
  • Contacts
  • FaceTime
  • Maps
  • Music
  • Watch app
  • Weather

You can see the complete list of apps that can be deleted here.

Remember, if the Contacts app is removed, all your contact information will remain in the Phone app (which can’t be deleted). While the FaceTime app can be deleted, you can still make and receive FaceTime calls in Contacts and the Phone app.

Apple also notes that when the Music app is removed, you’ll be unable to play audio content in its library using Apple apps or third-party apps on some car stereos or stereo receivers.

If you want to delete the Apple Watch app, you will first have to unpair the watch from your phone. Otherwise, an alert will ask you to unpair before proceeding.

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