Setapp is growing, and we’re hitting the next big milestone — going multi-platform. You can now install and activate mobile versions of some Setapp apps on your iPhone or iPad — right from Setapp!
If you're just wondering how to install & activate iOS apps, here are the steps. This article answers the rest of the questions about iOS apps in Setapp.
What’s new about Setapp for iOS? Some mobile apps were available before, what has changed?
Setapp has made working with iOS apps much clearer & easier for both members and app developers.
You can finally see available iOS companion apps in the Setapp desktop app. Installing & activating iOS apps has become easy and happens right in Setapp too.
App developers can now distribute iOS apps via Setapp and earn money for that — just like they do for their Mac apps. Previously, our partners provided access to iOS apps on a free basis only, which limited their resources for further development. Hopefully, the new distribution model encourages the developers to reinvest their profits and make iOS apps even better.
Important note: you’ll need an unoccupied device slot in your account for every iPhone or iPad you’ll be using iOS apps on. If you don’t have one yet, add an extra device subscription. Learn more here.
Setapp uses QR codes to activate iOS apps. Is that acceptable for the App Store?
We hope so. Setapp has spent several years on consultations and validation of different approaches, and finally came to a solution that would satisfy all parties involved. To know more, see our blog post: “Setapp for iOS: App Store Guidelines compliance.”
Which devices and iOS versions are supported?
Setapp supports apps for iPhones and iPads; for brevity, let’s call them “iOS devices.” We don’t currently have the watchOS and tvOS apps available in our library.
iOS versions. Every iOS app in Setapp has its own minimum requirements:
- 2Do: 10.3+
- Gemini: 12.0+
- MindNode: 12.2+
- Paste: 13.0+
- PDF Search: 11.0+
- SQLPro Studio: 10.3+
- Step Two: 14.0+
- Taskheat: 13.4+
- Ulysses: 12.2+
- Wokabulary: 11.1+
We recommend updating your device to the latest available version of iOS.
How do I know which apps in Setapp have mobile versions?
Open Setapp and click "Available on iOS" in the sidebar. You'll see all apps that have iOS companions; click any app to open its page.
You can also navigate through the entire Setapp's app collection (here are some hints on discovering apps). A small icon in the lower-left corner of an app icon shows that this application has an iOS companion.
What do I need to start using iOS apps in Setapp?
- Active subscription to Setapp.
- Unoccupied (available) device slot in your Setapp account for every iPhone or iPad on which you’d like to use iOS apps.
An active subscription is any subscription plan you've successfully paid for; it also includes accounts on a free trial and a grace period. When your subscription gets suspended or canceled, it's no longer active. Check out the Subscription page of your account to know your membership status.
The number of available devices is displayed in your online account ("Manage devices" page).
- If you see an Available slot (like on the image above), then you do have a device and can install mobile apps right away.
- If you're using Setapp on 2 or more Macs and want to free up a seat for an iOS device, click "Remove devices" and select a device to disconnect. Or, just sign out from your Setapp account on a Mac where you no longer need Setapp.
If you only see a single Mac that is already connected to Setapp and no other available devices, you can purchase one by clicking “Add extra devices” and following the instructions.
For more details, see our article on managing devices.
QR code scanning works with the Camera app from iOS 11 onward. If you have an earlier iOS version, you'll need to install a QR code reader app from the App Store.
Unfortunately, some QR code readers may not process the Setapp’s activation link correctly, so we recommend using the Camera app whenever possible. If you have difficulties with QR code scanners, please contact our support team.
For members of the Family plan, mobile apps are not available yet. We're working hard on improving the terms of the Family subscription and hope to introduce updates soon. For now, if some members of your Setapp Family want to use mobile apps in Setapp, consider switching these people to individual subscriptions, so that they could manage devices in their accounts and work with iOS apps. See "Change a subscription plan" for instructions.
How do I connect an iPhone or an iPad to my Setapp account?
To do that, install any iOS app on your mobile device using Setapp on Mac. You don’t need to sign in to Setapp on your iOS device or link it to Setapp manually — it happens automatically when you scan the installation QR codes in Setapp on Mac.
How to install and activate iOS apps with Setapp?
See the detailed steps in this article.
How do I know an iOS app has been activated successfully?
Right after you activate an iOS app on your device, you’ll see a notification from Setapp on your Mac, like this:
If you miss it, you can always see it later, just open Setapp and click your profile picture in the upper-right corner.
Alternatively, check out the notification center on your Mac; Setapp’s messages are also displayed there.
Some iOS apps might show a message after you activate them using Setapp. Note that the activated app should not prompt you to purchase a full or Pro version. If it does, try scanning the 2nd QR code in Setapp again to activate the app. If this doesn't help, let us know.
I’ve activated an iOS app with Setapp, but it prompts to purchase a full or Pro version. What do I do?
Try activating the app again by scanning the 2nd QR code. If the problem persists, kindly contact our Support Team.
Before Setapp version 2.7, released on August 6, 2020, members could activate some iOS apps without scanning QR codes, just by using the same iCloud account on an iOS device and a Mac with Setapp. These apps are:
Such apps, installed before August 2020, might require activation again because of the new iOS system in Setapp. To do so, follow the same steps as when installing & activating an iOS app.
Now, here are the important aspects to note:
- You’ll need an unoccupied device slot in your Setapp account — even though it wasn’t required when you installed the app for the first time. And, of course, an active Setapp subscription is a must. For more details, see this section.
- After scanning the first QR code, you'll find that the iOS has already been installed on your iOS device but needs to be updated. Please update the app.