How to Gift an iPhone App

While it's common to give iPhones and iPads and their accessories as gifts, the idea of giving apps as gifts is less common. But that doesn't mean that gifting an app is a bad idea! Sure, it doesn't make sense to give a free app; anyone can download those. But paid apps that cost $1, $3, or even $10 can make just as good a gift as a gift card or other accessory.

It's easy to gift an iOS app. Here's what you need to know.

The steps in this article apply to iOS 14 and up. Earlier versions of the iOS supporting gifting apps, too, but the exact steps might be slightly different.

How to Give Apps as Gifts Using iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch

You can give apps as a gifts using the App Store app that comes pre-installed on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. Here's how:

  1. Tap the App Store app to launch it.

  2. Find the app you want to gift by browsing or searching.

    Screenshots of gifting an iOS app from the App Store
  3. Tap the app to go to its detail page.

  4. Tap the action box (the rectangle with an arrow coming out of it).

  5. Tap Gift App (or just Gift, in some earlier versions of the iOS) in the pop-up menu at the bottom of the screen. Not every app can be given as a gift, so if you don't see this option, the app likely can't be gifted.

  6. Enter the email address of your gift recipient, your name, and a message.

    Screenshots of gifting an iOS app from the App Store
  7. In the Send Gift menu, sending the gift today is the default. To change that, tap the menu and select a new date.

  8. Tap Next.

  9. Swipe side to side to preview the gift email styles. When you find one you like, keep it on screen and tap Next.

  10. Review all details of the gift. To make changes, tap Back. To gift the iOS app, tap Buy.

How to Give Apps as Gifts Using iTunes

With the removal of the App Store from iTunes 12.7, you can no longer give apps as gifts using iTunes. If you've got an older version of iTunes, you can follow the steps listed below. Otherwise, the only option to gift an iOS app is to use an iPhone or iPad.

  1. Open iTunes and make sure you're logged into your Apple ID (or, if you don't have one, create one. You'll need to do this in order to pay for the gift).

  2. Select the App Store.

  3. Search or browse the App Store until you find the app that you want to give as a gift.

  4. Click the down arrow next to the price of the app.

  5. In the menu that pops up, click Gift This App.

  6. In the window that pops up, fill out the recipient's email address, your name, and a message to go along with the gift.

  7. Next, choose whether to send the gift by email today or on another date. If you select a future date, an email containing the gift will be sent to your recipient on that day.

  8. Click Next.

  9. Choose the style of the email that includes the gift. Select your style from the list on the left.

  10. If the preview of the gift email looks good, click Next.

  11. Review the gift, price, and other details. To change something, click Back. To gift the app, click Buy Gift

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