Everything that I have read says that iWorks/ iMovie etc should be free for Mac users after 1 September 2013.

I already bought Pages but want Numbers and iMovie. My MacBook Pro with retina is early 2015 and I am being charged.

Why is this please?

2 Answers 2


You probably purchased your MacBook Pro used, in which case the “free” downloads were redeemed to the original owner’s Apple ID. This would explain why you still had to pay for those apps.

Fortunately, starting April 18, 2017, Apple has made iMovie, GarageBand, Pages, Numbers and Keynote free for everybody. This should take care of what was a very common source of confusion among customers.

Previously, all of these apps were provided for free to customers who purchased a new Mac or iOS device, but now that purchase is not required to get the software.

Here are the direct App Store links:

(Note: You sometimes need to provide a credit card or gift card balance to set up an Apple ID for Store use, even for “free” downloads.)

If you recently purchased those apps, you may be able to receive a refund by contacting Apple Support.


I have a similar question. I bought my MBP in late 2011 but bought iWork then and updates were supposed to be free but it didn't want to give me the newer versions. I got around it by copying the apps from another newer Mac Mini, but we had a different Apple ID on that computer so I need to use that password to update the apps. But why did you buy Pages if it should be included for free?

According to Cult of Mac you should be able to just download a trial of iWork 09 and then upgrade for free, but I don't know if that will work since owning iWork 09 didn't give me the upgrades. Apple really should just make the whole thing free since it's basically free except for odd cases where people lose their copy.

Also if you don't want to try the iWork trial or copying from another Mac and want to use iWork for free, you can use the web version on iCloud.com

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