iOS App Offload vs. App Delete

iOS 14 has some nice new features and improvements. One of those features is the ability to “Offload” an App verses completely deleting the App. What is the difference you ask? Let’s take a look at “Offloading Apps” in iOS & iPadOS.

App Removal

The difference between completely deleting an App on your iPhone or iPad and just Offloading it is significant. When you delete an App, the App and all its data are removed from your iDevice. When you Offload an App, the actual App is deleted, but the data is saved. If you wish to reinstall the App at a later time, the previous data is present and is updated with the App install. Offloading an App may be the best solution sometimes depending on what your plans are for the App in question.

You start in the “General Settings” area to Offload an App in iOS 14.

General

Once in this area, tap on “iPhone Storage”.

iPhone Storage

You are taken to a list of Apps and their storage numbers.

Select App

In this case, I am going to Offload the “Airmail App”. I use Airmail sometimes for Email, but I am testing other Apps right now.

If you tap on the App you wish to Offload, you arrive at the Offload or delete screen.

Offload App

The notice under Offload App tells you that offloading an App will retain documents and data for that App, but by offloading the App you can free up space on your device. When you tap on “Offload App”, you receive this warning screen.

Offload

Tap on Offload App again and you see that the App is Offloaded. It lists the documents and data size in this window and offers to delete it if you wish.

Reinstall App

If you think you have made a mistake, you can always “Reinstall” the App.

Conclusion

Sometimes just Offloading an App is preferable to completely deleting it and all its documents and data.