Previous 1 2 Next 15 Replies Latest reply: Jan 11, 2013 11:33 PM by tsunamis
mouseno4 Level 1 Level 1
How do i do this? I legally purchased a whole bunch of apps over the years, but ive recently purchased an iphone 4 and would like to get all my apps over to my newer iphone 4, from my old iphone 3gs.

Ive somehow figured out how to transfer everything BUT apps. When i try to manually sync the 3gs apps with itunes, it asks if i want to permanently remove every app on the iphone - which i obviously dont want to do. 'Do you want to erase all apps on this iphone and replace them with the zero apps in itunes?' of course doing that would be pointless. Ive already read about manually copying the individual files from the iphone's actual file directory - but doing so will negate any app updates as the iphone would see them as not linked to my apple id.

I need some help with this as backing up the 3gs and restoring to the 4 only duplicates every single part of the 3gs EXCEPT the apps.

iphone 3gs iphone 4, Windows 7, transfer of apps between iphones
  • Ian Parkinson Level 6 Level 6
    You can download Apps as many times as you like from the App Store for free.
    Just download them again into iTunes and sync to the new phone.
  • Julian Wright Level 7 Level 7
    If you've been regularly syncing your iPhone 3GS with iTunes as designed, all your Apps should already be in your iTunes Library. Just connect the iPhone 4 and sync the apps as normal.

    Otherwise, connect the iPhone 3GS, in iTunes choose *File > Transfer purchases...* then when its finished connect the iPhone 4 and sync the Apps as normal.
  • Allan Sampson Level 10 Level 10
    If you had Sync Apps selected under the Apps tab for your iPhone 3Gs sync preferences with iTunes from the start, this would not be a problem.

    With Sync Apps selected under the Apps tab for your iPhone sync preferences with iTunes, after downloading an app direct with your iPhone the app will be copied to your iTunes library automatically the first time you sync your iPhone with iTunes after doing so. This also allows for downloading an app with iTunes on your computer and installing the app on your iPhone via the iTunes sync process. If you restore your iPhone with iTunes if wanted or needed, all apps are in your iTunes library and can be re-transferred to your iPhone. To remove an app from your iPhone without deleting the app, deselect the app under the Apps tab followed by a sync. To re-install the app again later on your iPhone, reselect the app under the Apps tab followed by a sync.

    Since you downloaded all apps direct with your 3GS, if you select Sync Apps now under the Apps tab all apps on your iPhone will be erased since all apps on your 3GS are not in your iTunes library where they should be because you didn't have Sync Apps selected from the start.

    With your 3GS connected to iTunes, at the iTunes menu bar go to File and select Transfer Purchases From - the name of your iPhone. After confirming all apps on your 3GS are now in your iTunes library, select Sync Apps under the Apps tab and make sure all apps currently installing on your 3GS are selected below. Select Apply followed by a sync.

    Now you can install the same apps on your iPhone 4 and the same I provided regarding having and keeping Sync Apps selected under the Apps tab for your iPhone sync preferences with iTunes will apply.
  • mouseno4 Level 1 Level 1
    You are downright condescending Allan Sampson.
  • Ian Parkinson Level 6 Level 6
    I thought he provided a very useful set of information, you are just rude.
  • jilm Level 1 Level 1 new not sure if this is the right place...I have just transferred apps to my iphone but the content that may be in them did not transfer...can somone help me on that...I should also mention I have a itouch with these same apps on it.
    thanks Jil
  • paulcb Level 6 Level 6
    Data for the app is not stored in the app but in the backup. The only way to get the data from the app on your Touch into your iPhone is to Restore your iPhone and use your Touch's backup.
  • mouseno4 Level 1 Level 1
    No Ian Parkinson. I am not rude, ive shown his response to everyone in my family including my friends, and they all agree it is quite condescending and arrogant. Useful or not.

    You are just being blindly loyal to someone you have known for a long time, regardless how they act. It wouldnt matter to you, whether they said what they did or went on a mindless rampage, you would still be completely loyal and stand by him regardless. This is quite common on public internet forums.
  • mouseno4 Level 1 Level 1
    Regardless, none of the suggestions mentioned in this thread have had any effect whatsoever. 'Transfer purchases' from the 3gs to itunes has no effect on itune's library of apps. Backup from the 3gs and Restore to the 4, does not copy apps across. I cannot sync the apps from itunes to the 3gs as doing so will wipe all apps on the 3gs that i wish to copy. Syncing the apps from itunes to the 4 also just wipes any resident apps on the 4 and does not add any to the home screen of the 4.
  • mouseno4 Level 1 Level 1
    I am fully aware i can 'purchase' the apps all over again for free as i have a licence for them, but an iphone full of games is a massive chunk of data to download. I would rather not have to download that many gigabytes of data all over again, regardless of the fact that i can re-download them all free, when i have all the data - and the 'saved game' data already on the 3gs.
  • jilm Level 1 Level 1
    to mouse5....I would contact apple to help you...

    to paul...where is the back up listed on my itouch? and what does it mean to restore my iphone4 will i loose everything or only the apps...thanks
  • mouseno4 Level 1 Level 1
    Actually i tried that. Spent a good hour going through the entire process all over again. Still no progress. When i use the 'Transfer Purchases' function from iTunes, it is meant to transfer ALL your purchases, music, ringtones, wallpapers, tv shows, movies and of course apps. So far, i have managed to get it to 'transfer' all my music, my tv shows and movies. But it all out refuses to transfer my apps. In iTunes, upon using the 'Transfer Purchases' function, it shows a progress bar in which i can actually SEE the individual apps being copied, but never does iTunes show those apps in its own library.

    The ONLY time ive managed to get iTunes to show any app whatsoever in its own library, is when i manually 'purchased' an app i already owned and is still stored on my 3gs, but within windows-itunes. Just as a test, i 'purchased' the app 'cut the rope' which i already legally have a copy and therefore is free for me to re-download, within itunes. That pc downloaded copy of cut the rope, is the only app that has ever shown up in the app section of itune's library.

    Makes no sense, that itunes would go through the lengthy process of copying all those apps from the 3gs, but not show them in its library.
  • jilm Level 1 Level 1
    I have apple care for my iphone mainly because i love their call back system...anyway I just spent an hour with a very patient person who walked me through backing up my apps and then downloading them as well as other things I was not understanding...the reason I bring it up here is for the original OP maybe if you try again with apple and get a different person they might be able to help you...or often I go to an Apple store (which is about a hour away) and go to the genious bar and there I have found patient people to help me with problems...anyway just suggestions if you are still having problems...
  • Ooser1 Level 1 Level 1



    I am coming along almost a year later for this question and yours helped me the best.

    It was direct and to the point without scolding me like a small child.


    You gave both ways of performing this task; if I had been sycing all along and if I had not.


    I was easily able to see very quickly what I needed to do and proceed to to do it without any hassals.

    I can happily say that I now have all my apps on my new phone and though sycing regularly is probably a good idea, I tend to do most of my updates etc. on the phone itself so I at least know that there is another way.


    Thank you for this simplicity.


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