AltStore is a brand new way of installing unsigned IPA files onto the iPhone or iPad, different to other unofficial app stores in how it works. It’s free to use so read on to find out all you need to know.
How to Download AltStore:
AltStore is quite different from other app installers in that your computer is required to install it on your device. You will need to download a companion app called AltServer and your device will need to be connected by cable. For Windows users on the Microsoft App Store version of iTunes, you need to delete it and reinstall it from the official Apple website – use the links below:
Now you can download AltStore:
- Plug your iPhone or iPad into your computer using the correct cable
- Download AltServer onto your computer from the AltStore website
- Windows – Go to your icon tray and click on AltServer. Hover the mouse cursor over Install AltStore and click your device name
- Mac –go to your toolbar and click on AltStore. Click Install AltStore and click on your device name
- Once AltStore is installed on your iPhone or iPad, you can use the app store for all your unsigned IPA files.
Be aware that your device needs to be connected to your computer and AltServer running when you want apps and games on your device – this can be done via the cable or by enabling iTunes Wi-Fi Sync.
How to Use AltStore:
- Launch AltStore on your device
- If you see an Untrusted Developer error, go to Settings > General > Profiles and trust the AltStore profile
- In AltStore, tap Settings > Account
- Sign in using your Apple ID and Password or app-specific password if you created one – it must be the same one used to install AltStore
- Tap on the browser and find what you want to download
- Tap FREE to install it
How to Install IPA Files:
AltStore also allows you to sideload files you download from the internet:
- Find and download whatever IPA file you want using Safari browser
- Find the file and tap the AltStore icon on it
- The store will open and the file is signed and installed
- Alternatively, open AltStore and tap on the Plus icon
- Find the file you downloaded, tap it and it will be installed
- The app icon shows on your home screen when the installation is done
Pros and Cons :
AltStore has plenty of advantages but it also comes with a couple of disadvantages:
- No jailbreak is needed
- The app certificates can’t be revoked by Apple because you are self-signing them
- Choose between pre-installed apps or install your own IPA files
- You can only have three active apps on your device at any one time and AltStore is one of them
- You need to AltServer companion app on your computer and your device and computer need to be connected using your cable or iTunes Wi-Fi Sync
- The app needs refreshing at least once in every seven-day period to stop the app from crashing
Frequently Asked Questions:
These answer all your questions about AltStore:
What is AltStore?
AltStore is a 3rd-party appstore with a difference in that it lets you sign apps and games using self-created developer certificates.
Is AltStore a Jailbreak?
No, it isn’t and you don’t need to install a jailbreak to use AltStore either. It is simply a third-party app store that offers you a way of installing unsigned apps and games.
How Does AltStore Work?
Riley Testut developed AltStore using a feature that Apple gave developers to test apps before they go into the iOS app store. This is what allows you to self-sign the certificates to install the apps and games on your device. It is also why you need to use your Apple ID and it restricts you to only have three active AltStore apps on your device at a time – and one of those is AltStore.
What Apps Are Included?
At the moment, there aren’t many but the developer assures us that more are being added over time. Right now, these are the most popular ones:
- Happy Chick Emulator
- Chimera Jailbreak
How Should I Use AltStore?
By following how the developer recommends you use it:
- Make sure that AltStore can open automatically when you log onto your computer
- When you are not using your computer, leave it in sleep mode and connect your device to it overnight. That way, iOS can wake your apps and refresh them
- AltStore should be launched at least once a week to ensure it is prioritized by iOS and your apps refreshed.
AltStore is very different from other app installers but is well worth trying. Download it on your iPhone or iPad today and see what it can offer you.