Downloading Your First iPad App

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How to Download an iPad App

iPad App Store
The iPad's App Store is one of the default applications preloaded on the iPad.

The iPad App Store can be very intimidating at first, but once you get the hang of it, downloading apps is actually pretty easy. In fact, finding apps tends to be the real trick to learning the app store. With so many apps, it can be hard to locate the best ones, but once you do, it is easy to download the app to the iPad.

For this demonstration, we are going to download the iBooks app. This application from Apple really should be one of the default apps, but because there are a variety of different eBook stores on the iPad from the Kindle application to the Barnes & Noble Nook application, Apple has left it to the user to choose which bookstore to use.

The first thing we need to do in order to download the iBooks app is launch the App Store by touching the icon on the iPad's screen. I've highlighted the icon in the picture above.

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How to Download iBooks on the iPad

iBooks
The App Store's search screen contains a small snippet of information about the apps shown in the results.

Now that we have launched the App Store, we need to find the iBooks application. There are over half a million apps in the App Store, but finding a specific app is pretty simple if you know its name.

To find the iBooks app, simply type "iBooks" in the search bar on the upper right corner of the App Store. Once you've finished typing it into the search box, touch the search key on the on-screen keyboard.

What if there is no search box?

For some crazy reason, Apple left the search box off of the Updates screen and the search box for the Purchased screen only searches through your purchased applications. If you don't see the search box in the location highlighted in the above image, simply tap the "Featured" button at the bottom of the App Store. This will take you to the Featured screen and the search box should appear in the top right corner.

I've located the iBooks application, now what?

Once you have the iBooks app on your screen, simply touch the icon to go to the application's profile in the App Store. The profile screen will give you more information about the app, including user reviews.

Note: You can also download the app directly from the search screen by touching the "Free" button and then verifying your choice by touching the "Download" button. For this tutorial, we'll proceed to the profile page first.

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The iBooks Profile Page

iBooks Profile
The iBooks profile page contains a variety of information about the iBooks application.

Now that we are on the iBooks profile page, we can download the application. But first, let's take a look at this page. This is where you will decide whether or not an application fits your needs or is worthwhile to download.

The main section of this screen contains a description by the developer. You may need to press a "More" link on the right side of the screen to see the whole description.

Under the description is a series of screenshots. This is a great way to check for specific features you may want in the app. How to take a screenshot on your iPad

The most important part of the screen is under the screenshots. This is where the Customer Ratings are located. Not only do you get an overview of the app, with ratings broken down between one and five stars, but you can read actual reviews of the application from other customers. In general, you should stay away from apps that have an average of only one or two stars.

Ready to download?

Let's install the iBooks application. First, if you scrolled down to read the reviews, you will need to scroll back to the top.

To download the app, touch the "Free" button underneath the large icon on the upper left side of the screen. When you touch this button, it will change to a green "Install App" button. This is to verify that you actually want to download the app. If the app was not free, this confirmation button would read "Buy App".

When you touch the "Install App" button, you may be prompted to input your Apple ID's password. This is to protect your account from having applications installed by anyone who picks up your iPad. Once you enter your password, you can download apps without confirming your account for a short while, so if you are downloading several apps at the same time, you won't need to continuously input your password.

After entering your Account password, you download will begin.

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Finishing the Download

iBooks
The iBooks app will be installed to your iPad's home screen.

Once the download starts, the app will appear on your iPad's home screen. However, you won't be able to use it until the app is fully installed. Download progress is marked by a bar that slowly fills as the app installs. Once this bar disappears, the name of the app will appear below the icon and you will be able to launch the application.

Want to change where the app is located?

It's pretty easy to fill up the screen with apps, and once you've downloaded more apps than will fit on the screen, a new screen will open with the new apps. You can move between screens full of apps by swiping left or right on the iPad's screen.

You can also move apps from one screen to the next and even create custom folders to hold your apps. Learn more about moving apps and organizing your iPad.

What else should you download?

The iBooks application is great for those who want to use their iPad as an eReader, but there are many other great iPad apps out there that should be installed on almost every iPad.

The first three apps to install include an app with free movies, an app for creating custom radio stations and an app for organizing your social media. And if you want more ideas, you can check out the "must have" iPad apps, which includes some of the best free apps for the iPad.

Ready for More?

If you want to learn more about navigating your iPad, finding the best apps and even how to delete apps you no longer want, check out the iPad 101 lesson guide.