I am running iOS 5.1 on my third gen ipad. I have moved and changed my account location to a different country. I have around $1500 worth of professional apps installed on my device which were all bought in the first country.

What will happen if I upgrade the iOS? will I loose all my apps and have to download them again? or they will not be touched and will remain on the device and upgrade of the OS will not affect them at all?

I am asking because some of the apps that i have bought before and deleted are no longer available as free because i previously owned them in the new country, and I have to buy them again. The last thing I want is to pay for all the apps again...


I moved from Germany to the Netherlands four years ago. I have only a single account. Once I got a Dutch credit card, I was enforced by Apple to switch countries for my account. This had the following effects on my account:

  1. I was no longer able to update my iOS apps in iTunes on a Mac. It told me that there are updates, but when I wanted to perform them, it refused to do so.
  2. I was always (and am still) able to update my apps in the AppStore on my iPad (which I had already in Germany).
  3. I am no longer able to buy stuff on the German AppStore on my iPad.
  4. I can buy stuff on the Dutch AppStore on my iPad.
  5. "Dutch apps" and "German apps" are indistinguishable on my iPad.

I later bought an iPhone in the Netherlands, which was never associated with my account while it was still a German account. Same picture as with the iPad: I can buy only in the Dutch AppStore, but can run my old apps and the new ones. Old apps update from the Dutch AppStore, even if I bought them in the German one.

Both the iPad and the iPhone got updated versions of iOS and the situation stayed the same.

You should check if the apps you are running are available in your destination. If so, it worked for me.

  • the last point is critical. I have some apps that are not available in my destination country. In your experience did you loose any apps after you updated the iOS in such an instance?
    – blackace
    Jun 26 '13 at 23:19
  • I did not have such apps. I have such music, but there are no updates with music.
    – guwac
    Jun 28 '13 at 0:47

I had a similar problem once. I've got a couple of apps bought in the US app store using a gift card, and my primary store was in ireland. I simply used a different account to buy using the gift card. The only thing I had to do is to login to another account and that's it.

Then I moved to another country, and like guwac said, I had to change the credit card.

Now I have apps from 3 different stores using 2 different accounts. They all work fine. Some of the apps, like Pandora, are not available anywhere else, but still, when in another country, I was able to reinstall them fine.


For the record:

I went and updated the iOS and I can still use the apps from previous location and did not loose any of the apps that were not available in the new country after upgrading.

  • Do the apps that are not available in the new country still auto-update? Or do you have to switch stores manually to get updates? Jan 9 '18 at 12:37
  • @SamBrightman you have to switch account...
    – blackace
    Jan 10 '18 at 10:33
  • do you mean switch country? So far apps that are in both countries’ stores seem to auto-update without intervention, but harder to test country-exclusive apps. Jan 10 '18 at 11:27
  • @SamBrightman You are right about the ones that are available in both/multiple countries. I move around so have apps from multiple accounts in different countries. The ones that are not available in other countries can only be updated when you switch to the store using that specific id that has it and update it then.
    – blackace
    Jan 23 '18 at 12:43

When you 'changed your account location', do you mean that youve added a second account in a different country? If so, you will be fine and the existing apps will not be touched. I have accounts in 3 countries, and it all works fine,I can continue to access and update apps from the different country stores, it's just a minor hassle to have to switch accounts for updates.

  • No, I just have one account that now only operates in the new country as far as i understand...
    – blackace
    Jun 15 '13 at 5:55

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