I have an iPhone 4, an iPad, and an iPhone 3G repurposed as a "touch" for a little one. The short of it is, there are apps I have on my iPhone 4 that I don't want on my iPad, and some on the old 3G that I don't want on either. What's one to do?

I've tried managing by hand which apps sync on which device, but this information gets lost periodically, which means a huge app dump across the iPad and iPhone 4.

What would seem most effective is, while the "purchased" app pool would be common, each device would have a derived subset of this pool (so they wouldn't have to re-purchase), and so would/could never inadvertently sync apps from another device pool.

I suppose the checkboxing of each app approximates this, but it's very frustrating when this information is lost.

Any help for this? Thanks!

2 Answers 2


You can uncheck "Automatically sync new apps" in iTunes. This will avoid the situation where iPhone apps that you don't want to use on your iPad wind up getting synced over. Other than that, the only current solution is to manually check off each app you want on each device.

  • There is no easy way to accomplish this, folktrash. I suggest this one change that bpapa suggests, and ONLY buy child apps on the iPod itself. It's a good first step to maintaining organizational sanity. Nov 29, 2010 at 0:30
  • Thanks for the advice. I'll try this out. I appreciate the iLove. Hopefully there is a more robust solution on the horizon.
    – folktrash
    Nov 29, 2010 at 1:44
  • Hmm, I don't yet have the rep to vote this up. Also, is it auto marked as answered when enough folks push it up? I thought mayhap I could say - this answers it. Alrighty.
    – folktrash
    Nov 29, 2010 at 1:45
  • If you want to mark it as accepted, click the checkmark.
    – bpapa
    Nov 29, 2010 at 2:33

The real question would seem to be - how does that information get lost? I sync between three devices, an iPhone, iPad, and Touch also - I've not had it lose track of which apps were on which system. How does that happen?

  • It's happened to me several times, however I can derive no pattern. Usually, it seems to go with an OS update. But not always. Sometimes with a sync, but rarely. It's such a huge pain to reset everything that I've currently given up as the pain of a potential re-do is so unforgettable. Thanks for the comment.
    – folktrash
    Nov 29, 2010 at 1:43

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