Install Free Apps – Revisited

I talked about my recommendation on how to install free apps on your iPads in the initial setup blog post. The process hasn’t changed, but I decided to dedicate a post specially for installing Free Apps. If you install free apps using Meraki you will get prompted on devices to enter a password. Also it is not 100% reliable. There are tricks to making it work “better” but I have found the process below to be by far the easiest way.

This process assumes 2 things:

  1. All the iPads you are trying to send the app to are using the same iTunes account. This should be the case with a classroom or cart set of iPads.
  2. Each iPad has Automatic Downloads turned on for Apps in Settings > iTunes & App Store
  1. Open the App Store on one of the iPads
  2. Search for the free app you want to download
  3. Click GET next to the app
  4. Enter the iTunes Account password

When you do this the app will start downloading on the iPad as well as all the other iPads that are using the same iTunes Account.

Couple things to note:

  • If you are going to install more than one app, Apple gives you a 15 minute window after you enter the password in which it does not prompt for the password again. This is handy for the teacher, but is something to keep in mind if you plan to download an app and then immediately hand the iPad to a student.
  • If one of the apps does not install on an iPad any user can open the App Store, go to the purchased section, and click on the cloud icon next to the app. The app will download without prompting for a password.
  • If you are being prompted to enter a password in either point above, you probably have one of 2 settings enabled in your Meraki Profile.
    • “Force user to enter iTunes Store password for all purchases”

    • The content rating for Apps has been changed from “Allow All Apps”. This seems like a good idea, but in my experience it has caused password prompts;

One added bonus to installing apps this way is if you plan to let teachers install apps to a classroom set of iPads, this process should be familiar and you don’t have to create a Meraki account for them.

Happy downloading.

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