How do you know if an app is free or not | Appy Pie Help

How do you know if an app is free or not?

By Abhinav Girdhar | Updated on February 24, 2020, 9:22 pm

If you are looking for an app on either iOS or Mac Stores, you will see that Apple has changed the way it used to labels free apps. Earlier, even if such an app included costly upgrades, it would carry the label 'Free.' However, in subsequent with Apple’s latest App Store refresh, the description will now read 'Get.'

Want to know the reason?

Well, it could be because of the pressure Apple has been dealing with, from European regulators to better safeguard children and parent's bank accounts from the suspicious world of in-app purchases.

In the article further, we will talk about apps, types of apps and how do you know if an app is free in the app store.

What is an App?

An app is a program, or a software, generally a specific one used for mobile devices. The term app initially referred to any desktop or mobile application, but as multiple app stores have begun to sell mobile apps to tablet and smartphone users, the term has developed to refer to small software and programs to be downloaded and installed all in one go.

There are millions of apps created to run on today's tablets and smartphones. Some apps can be downloaded and installed for free, while others ought to be purchased from an app store.

Types of Applications

Millions of mobile apps are launched in various app stores every day. Apps have become a necessity for every business. The businesses are concentrating more on the decision of creating apps to promote their brand and products.

In general, the mobile apps are categorized into three types – Native, Web, Hybrid apps, each working as per their functions.

  1. Native Mobile Apps
  2. Native mobile apps are entirely created for a certain type of Operating system. These apps are called natives because they are subject to a specific platform or device. Apps created on one type of operating system cannot be installed or used on another OS. For example, you can’t use Android apps on the iPhone. They create applications using the language and development tools that the individual platform supports. For example, Objective-C and XCode with, Eclipse, iOS, and Java with Android. It offers full access to all device controls like cameras, sensors, contacts, etc. Native apps can be accessed through respective app stores for example, iOS apps on App Store, Android apps on Google Play Stores, etc.

    Benefits of native apps

  • Work fast
  • Easily distributed in google apple app stores
  • More interactive and intuitive
  • Interacts easily with any feature of the phone

  • Mobile Web Apps
  • Mobile Web Apps are web-based applications and don’t get installed in mobile devices, they just deliver web pages. The applications get operated by web-hosted servers. Mobile web apps usually use CSS, HTML, jQuery, JavaScript web technologies. They can’t read all the features of the mobile device they are running on.

    Benefits of Mobile Web Apps

    • No installation required
    • Reduce business cost
    • Always up to date
    • Better reach as they can be accessed from anywhere

  • Hybrid Mobile Apps
  • Hybrid apps are combinations of mobile web and native apps. Like native apps, these apps are found in an app store and can access many native device’s features available. Further, like mobile web apps, these apps depend on HTML being provided in a browser, with the requirement of the browser being rooted within the app. These applications are developed using technologies like JavaScript, HTML, jQuery, CSS, Cordova/PhoneGap, Mobile JavaScript frameworks, etc. These apps are also installed in the device and supplied through the app store.

    Benefits of hybrid apps

    • No browser required
    • Faster to expand than native apps
    • Cheaper than a native app
    • Easy to create
    • Single app for all platforms
    • Can access device utilities using an API

    Types of Paid Applications

    Paid Apps are more popular and wider than the free ones. Paid or Subscription-based applications are software that is meant for usage to those who need it, of course, the program being of a high creation value, the promotion of these applications is thorough and intended for those who will pay an amount for the use of the technology.

    There are two types of paid applications.

    1. Upfront Payment
    2. Users pay for this type of apps during the download and installation process. But Google proposes a default trial version for all such apps. In case users don’t find the app helpful, they can uninstall it and will not be charged for installing it.

    3. In-app purchase
    4. Users do not make any payment during the download and installation process. Post-trial period, as per the apps, they either pay for a yearly or monthly subscription or make a one-time payment.

    As you have learned about the types of applications as per the installation and payments perspective, let us find out how do you know if an app is free in the app store.

    How do you know if an app is free in the app store?

    Various app stores show different buttons to indicate if any specific application is available for the installation for free or if it is paid.

    • Google Play Store
    • While installing the application from Google Play Store you see a green ‘Install’ button on the app, which means that the app is free, though it might include some in-app purchases, as per the features. On the other hand, when the green button has a cost marked on it, it means that it is a paid app.

    • Apple App Store
    • On the Apple App Store, it shows the ‘Get’ button if the app is free and if the button shows price, it is a paid app. In case of any in-app purchases, it will display that information next to the ‘Get’ or price button on the app.


    There are millions of applications available on different stores out there - free and paid. Go for the one that fits your needs and check if it is free or paid. You will surely be able to do that after reading this article.

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