Apple sells around 18 million computers every year. Some will be replacing older technology. For others, a new Macbook or Mac desktop might be their very first Apple product.
If you’re new to macOS, you may find you have a steep learning curve ahead of you. If you’re making the switch from Windows or another system, doing things on your Mac may not seem intuitive. That’s true even if you’ve used iOS before.
This guide will help you with one of the most fundamental tasks. Deleting apps on Mac can help you free up your storage space and keep your system running smoothly. With this five-step guide, you’ll have it down pat in no time.
1. Decide When to Start Deleting Apps on Mac
When should you delete apps on your Mac?
An obvious reason is that you no longer need or use the app. Maybe you had a free trial that ran out. You may have been using two or three apps, trying to decide which one worked best for you.
These apps are now sitting on your hard drive, taking up space. That may not be an immediate concern, but it can mean you’re more likely to run out of storage space. These unused apps could also be slowing your computer down, especially if they launch at startup.
If you’re not using it, it’s probably time to get rid of the app. You can always re-download an app or reinstall it if you discover you do need it.
You may also need to remove some apps if you upgrade from an older version of macOS to Catalina. Catalina no longer supports 32-bit programs.
This has created some problems for people who were using older programs. The developers may not have switched to 32-bit yet, or they may not be making a new version of the software for some reason. In this case, it’s best to check out some alternatives and then get rid of the 32-bit app.
2. Deleting Apps: Method One
There are actually a couple of different methods for deleting apps. The first one is to simply go into Finder. Most apps will be located in your Applications folder.
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The Applications folder usually appears in the sidebar of the Finder window, which makes it easy to locate.
Once you’ve accessed this folder, you can search through the list of apps to find the one you want to delete. Then click on it and drag it to the trash.
You can also select the app, then choose File -> Move to Trash. Be sure to exit the program before you try to move it to the trash. If the program is running, you won’t be able to delete it.
If you can’t find the app, use Spotlight to locate it. Once you’ve found it, double-click the app while holding the Command key to delete it.
Once you’ve moved unwanted apps to the trash, you can simply empty the trash. The apps will now be deleted.
3. Deleting Apps: Method Two
You can also use Launchpad to locate apps you’ve downloaded from the App Store.
To use this method, open Launchpad from the Dock. If you’re working on a Macbook, you can also pinch the trackpad with your thumb and three fingers.
Launchpad should open and display the apps you’ve downloaded. If you don’t see the app, you can search for it. You can swipe left or right on the trackpad to see additional pages of apps.
Once you’ve located the app, press, and hold the Option key. You can also simply click on any app icon and hold until the icons start jiggling.
There should be an X above all the icons now. Click on this. You’ll be asked if you want to delete the app.
Once you’ve confirmed you want to delete the app, it will be deleted.
If an app doesn’t have an X next to it, it’s either necessary to running your computer or it didn’t come from the App Store. If you didn’t download the app from the App Store, you’ll need to use method one.
You can also simply drag and drop apps from Launchpad into the trash as well. Once you’ve done this, be sure to empty the trash. Then the app will be uninstalled.
4. Clean up Stored Data
Deleting apps on Mac can be quite simple. Just getting rid of the application itself may not be enough to truly clean up your hard drive. If you want to remove all traces of the app from your computer, you’ll need to make sure you’re also removing all stored data.
Many apps use stored data, and that information hangs around on your hard drive long after you delete the app.
Some apps will offer dedicated uninstallers. When possible, try to use these uninstallers. They’ll do a better job of clean-up, removing stored data.
If the app you want to remove doesn’t have a dedicated uninstaller, then you can find a third-party remover in the App Store. These apps work the same way as a dedicated uninstaller, making sure both the app and all its stored data are removed. The experts at Setapp say using third-party cleaners to delete apps on Mac is usually a better bet.
This frees up even more space on your hard drive. Your computer will run faster without all sorts of stored data from deleted apps hanging around.
5. Cancel Subscriptions to Apps
It’s important to remember that deleting an app on Mac doesn’t necessarily cancel your subscription. To do that, you’ll need to log in to the App Store or head over to the app provider’s website.
From there, you’ll be able to cancel your subscription. You should take steps to cancel a subscription before you delete the app. In many cases, you’ll need to access the app to cancel your subscription or switch back to a free version.
Keep Your Mac Running Optimally
Deleting apps on Mac can be a simple process. Taking steps to make sure all app data is deleted can help you free up more space and keep your computer running smoothly.
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