Several readers report that they are unable to delete/remove apps from their iPads, iPhones, and other iDevices. You press and hold the app, it jiggles and it wiggles, and even the lovely X appears. But when you try and tap the X nothing happens. The screen freezes. And you even have to restart the iDevice to use it again.
Maybe you didn’t even get that far. You press down on an app. It starts the wiggle–great so far. But the X does not appear. And you say, dang this used to work, what gives?
- 1 The Usual Suspects when Unable to delete/remove apps
The Usual Suspects when Unable to delete/remove apps
To remove an app, tap and hold any app icon until the app icons start to jiggle. Then tap the (X) in the corner of the app that you want to get rid of. If you are unable to remove apps from your iPhone or iPad, it is highly likely that one of these situations applies to you.
Mind Your Touch when unable to delete/remove apps
iFolks with 3D Touch iDevices know the importance of finger pressure. So make sure apply light pressure AND hold that light pressure for access to app deletion. Too much pressure opens the 3D Touch quick menus or actions.
You are trying to delete an iOS built-in app
Some Apple built-in apps are not deletable. And if you use an iOS earlier than 10, no stocks app are deletable–none.
Built-in apps that ARE Deletable
- Find My Friends
- iCloud Drive
- iTunes Store
- TV or Videos
- Voice Memos
- Watch app
All others, like Safari, Messages, Photos, Settings, and Health must remain on your iDevice.
You restricted deleting apps on your device
Check that restrictions are OFF. Settings>General>Restrictions>Off. If Restrictions are ON, you need to enter your restrictions passcode to turn this feature off.
Alternatively, modify the Restrictions allowed by toggling Deleting Apps to the ON and allow position. Tap Settings > General > Restrictions > and toggle ON Deleting Apps
If you want to delete apps with the delete apps restriction still in place or you cannot remember your restrictions passcode, connect your iDevice to mac or windows computer and open itunes. After opening itunes under your iDevice, go to apps and delete or add apps from here. With this method, you delete your apps without resetting anything.
Your iDevice is unresponsive
Simply restart your device by pressing and holding the on/off button and then slide the red slider to power off. To turn back on, press and hold the on/off button until you see the Apple logo.
Backup and Sync to solve unable to delete/remove apps
If that didn’t help, try doing a full back up and sync via icloud or itunes. Some folks say performing this sorted their similar problems.
Try a forced restart
- On an iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus: Press and hold both the Sleep/Wake and Volume Down buttons for at least ten seconds, until you see the Apple logo
- On an iPhone 6s and earlier, iPad, or iPod touch: Press and hold both the Sleep/Wake and Home buttons for at least ten seconds, until you see the Apple logo
- App updates not working (or showing up) in App Store
- Purchased iOS Apps not appearing on App Store “Purchased” Tab: iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch
- Passbook not working, how to fix