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App Store Secrets: get free iOS and Mac software and other tips and tricks

Mark Hattersley | Sept. 6, 2013
Get the best deals from Apple's online application shop with our guide to the App Store

Apple's App Store has become the standard way to get software for your Mac, iPhone and iPad. One click on the App Store app and you're taken to a world of software.

But many people don't venture far beyond the Top Paid, Top Free and Top Grossing charts. Unless something in the New & Noteworthy catches their eye, or they do a search for something they've heard about elsewhere.

This is a real shame, because there's a wealth of great stuff on the App Store. And once you know a little bit about how it works you can really get the most from it. This guide is a collection of some of our best App Store tips and tricks.

Search online instead of in the App Store
When you're looking for something, don't bother with the App Store search. It's okay, but even the staunchest Apple fans concede that Google is better at search. And Apple opened up the information on its App Store with Apple Preview. You can use Google to search just the apple preview site using the following search term before your search:


This limits the search to just the Apple Preview, or the App Store. Try combining it with other Search Tools. Clicking Search Tools and Past 24 hours to see the new apps that arrived today. Combine with words like 'Free' and 'Offer' to see the best deals.

Browse iTunes Preview in web browser
Here's another quick web trick. You can access a large list of popular App Store software by clicking this link. It's a large list of Apple Preview software and is great for getting a fast overview of what's available in each category.

Follow App Store on Facebook and Twitter
If you want to know what's happening on the App Store, especially when Apple is giving away free software, music or books. Then following Apple's social media services is the way to do it. You can find the official App Store on Facebook here, and the App Store on Twitter here.

Free music
Music is pretty close to Apple's heart, so it's no surprise to find a lot of music promotions on the App Store. If you're a keen music fan then be sure to check out Apple's Single of the week page. Apple works with artists to offer a free music single download every week, it's a great way to get some free tracks.

Free Movies and Television shows
Unlike music it's pretty rare to come across free movies and TV shows on iTunes. We guess the movie industry is a little more cautious than the music guys. Having said that don't forget that there are lots of apps that enable you to watch free movies on your iOS device. Here are some to check out:


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