How to hide purchased apps using iTunes

Downloaded a bunch of free games and apps you no longer want to see in your iTunes purchase history? Here's how you can hide them in just a few clicks.

Downloading almost every promotional app or game you come across in the App Store is a good idea, but it's also one that will result in your purchase history being littered with random apps. Some of them you'll need to use one day; others you'll never look at again. Anyone who has tried viewing their purchased history on an iOS device knows how long it takes for the list to appear -- it's ridiculous.

To clear up your purchased history, you'll need access to a computer with iTunes installed and a few minutes of your time. Start by launching iTunes on your computer and navigating the the iTunes Store.

Screenshot by Jason Cipriani/CNET
  • Under the Quick Links section, click the link titled "Purchased." Here you'll be able to view your iTunes history for everything from music to books and movies, to games. Click on the "Apps" section along the top.

    This is the same list of purchased apps you can find on your iOS device. On your iPhone it's under the Updates tab in the App Store. For an iPad, it has a tab of its own in the App Store app.

Screenshot by Jason Cipriani/CNET
  • When you move your mouse over an app icon, you'll notice a circle with an X in it appears in the top-left corner of the icon. Clicking the X will hide the app from your purchased history, both in iTunes and on your iOS device(s).
Screenshot by Jason Cipriani/CNET
  • Should you change your mind and want to unhide an app, simply view your account in iTunes and click the View Hidden Purchases link. You can then unhide any previously hidden purchases, restoring them to your purchased list.

Alternately, you can unhide items using the App Store app on your iOS device. It appears that on iOS 5 you can even hide apps from your device, but in iOS 6 that feature has disappeared. To unhide items using your device, follow the latter portion of this post by Matt Elliot.

As you've probably already figured out by now, this same method will work to hide and unhide iTunes content other than apps. You can also hide music, movies, books, and TV shows following the same steps outlined above. The only difference is the category of the content that you're hiding.