Apple’s strict vigil over the iOS ecosystem and the App Store means that there are no third-party alternative App Stores. Using an ingenious method though, developer Riley has come up with an alternative App Store for non-jailbroken iPhones and iPads called AltStore.
While there are a few third-party App Stores, they are all low-key in nature and use Apple’s Enterprise Certificate to distribute the apps. The problem with this method is that Apple can revoke their certificate at any given time.
Riley’s AltStore, however, uses a completely different method. It uses a developer feature in which you can install apps on your iPhone or iPad using your Apple ID and Xcode. It does require that your iOS device is connected to your PC while you install apps on it which is not that convenient. On the positive side, Riley says that Apple cannot shut down AlltStore unless they fundamentally change some low-level system settings in iOS with a future update.
Follow the steps below to know how you can install AltStore on your iPhone or iPad.
Install AltStore on Your iPhone or iPad
Step 1: Download AltServer on your PC and open it. Proceed to connect your iPhone or iPad to your PC over USB.
Step 2: Click on the AltServer icon from your Mac’s menu bar, select Install AltStar and then proceed to select your iPhone or iPad.
You will be prompted to enter your Apple ID credentials during the installation process.
Step 3: An AltStore icon should now show up on the home screen of your iPhone or iPad. You can browse all the apps and games available on the store from here.
As long as your iPhone or iPad is connected to your PC, you can directly install apps on them from AltStore as well. You will also have to keep launching AltStore periodically so that it can refresh all installed apps in the background. This is important since all installed apps expire after 7 days.
Why Should You Install AltStore?
One major reason as to why you should consider installing AltStore is because apps available on it will not have the same restrictions as applicable on Apple’s own App Store. It currently has two of Riley’s own apps: Delta and Clip. The former is an all-in-one NES emulator that will allow you to play some NES games like Super Mariokart, Mariokart 64, and more using emulation on your iPhone or iPad. As for Clip, it is a clipboard manager app — again a type of app that Apple does not allow on the App Store.
AltStore is right now in preview and launches officially on September 28. After that, the list of apps on the store is only going to increase.