There’s no doubt that nearly all iOS users have heard of Cydia. For those that haven’t, it is an unofficial app store packed with modifications, tweaks, third-party apps, and more but, to install it, you have to jailbreak your device first. Thousands of users consider that a small price to pay to have the ability to use their device as they want to and not how Apple says they can. If that’s you, here’s everything you need to know.
How to Download Cydia on iPhone and iPad:
The only and best way to do this is to install a jailbreak. There are several available right now, and you can pick the one that matches your device specifications and firmware from the Cydia Download page. Simply choose your tool and follow the instructions in the guide.
How to Use Cydia:
Open Cydia on your device, and you will see the home screen with several options:
- Sources – here, you can add new sources or edit the ones you have installed
- Search – find the tweaks, apps, mods, etc. you want from the installed sources
- Installed – shows you everything you have installed from Cydia
- Changes – see all the updates to your installed apps, tweaks, etc.
Adding a Repository to Cydia:
- Open Cydia and tap Sources.
- Tap on Edit > Add.
- The URL field will appear, type in the repository name.
- Tap on Add Source, and it will be added to Cydia.
How to Download Tweaks:
- Open Cydia and tap on the Search option.
- Type in the tweak name you want.
- Make sure your device supports it and tap on Modify
- Tap on Install > Confirm.
- When the tweak is installed, tap Restart Springboard.
Deleting Tweaks from Cydia:
- Launch Cydia and tap the Installed option.
- Tap on Recent and tap the tweak you want to be deleted.
- Tap Modify > Remove > Confirm.
- Tap on Restart Springboard, and the tweak is gone.
What Does Cydia Offer?
Cydia is the original unofficial app store and provides users with plenty of ways to change their devices:
- Themes – plenty of choices to theme your device
- Tweaks – options to change how the fonts, icons, lock screen, battery indicator, and more look
- Apps – lets you add new functions to your device – change your app switcher, messaging apps, icon layout, change what’s on the lock screen, and more
- Lock Screen Themes – changes what shows on your lock screen and how it is displayed
Apple is more than a little restrictive in what they allow you to do with the device you have bought and paid for. That’s where Cydia comes in to provide the extra functionality. For example, FaceTime. Apple only allowed it to be used on Wi-Fi on the older devices, but a neat Cydia tweak makes your apps believe your device is on Wi-Fi when it’s on data; that way, you can use Wi-Fi-only apps on your data plan.
Frequently Asked Questions
There are people who have never used Cydia and are curious about what it can do for them. These are the commonly asked questions about it:
What is Cydia?
It is an unofficial store provided with jailbreak utilities, containing tons of tweaks, mods, and more, many of them completely free. It was created by Jay Freeman ( aka Saurik ) in 2008 and released as the first unofficial app store to rival Apple’s first app store, install. App. Over the next three years, it grew in popularity, eventually garnering more than 4 million visitors every month, and today, it is just as popular as ever.
Why Should I Download Cydia?
Simply because of everything it offers when you jailbreak your device:
- Tons of themes and tweaks to help you change the look of your device
- Use tweaks to add extra functions and features to the existing ones
- Give stock apps a boost with added features
- Download tons of unofficial apps and games
- Download ringtones, wallpapers, themes, and more
Do I Need to Jailbreak to Download Cydia?
Yes. Cydia and all it offers can only work with root access, and you can only get that by installing a jailbreak.
Is it Free?
Yes. All you need to do is install a free jailbreak, and Cydia is included.
Is it Safe?
Yes, provided you use the official links to download the jailbreaks and only use the preinstalled sources. Third-party sources can be added but at your own risk as they may include malware.
What are the Benefits?
Jailbreaking your device gives you access to Cydia, the popular package manager that offers thousands of tweaks, modifications, apps, games, and much more. Using these, you can get past the restrictions Apple places on your device and do pretty much what you want. None of these tweaks are authorized by Apple but, by jailbreaking your device, you bypass their restrictions and change how your device looks, feels, and works.
Is it Legal?
Yes, in many places. It was ruled legal in the USA by the Library of Congress in 2012 and, although the same applies to many other countries, you would need to check with your region.
Are the Tweaks Free?
Not all of them. Most are, and some are just a dollar or two. There are some that are considerably more expensive, but you are free to choose what you want and only download free ones if it suits you. Most have a donation button where you can donate towards the hard work the developers put in, but this is also optional.
What About Cydia Alternatives?
There are a lot of alternatives you can use without jailbreaking, but none of them offer the same experience as Cydia does. The Jailbreak requires root access for the tweaks to work and, because the alternatives don’t require you to jailbreak, you don’t get the tweaks, mods, etc. However, you can try them to get an idea of what jailbreaking could do for you by installing TutuApp, Panda Helper, and many other alternatives
What is a Repository?
It is a storage option where tweaks, mods, apps, and more are stored. There are some already installed in Cydia, but you can add third-party ones if you want to.
You can remove Cydia in two ways – restore your device using iTunes or install Cydia Impactor and use that. First place your device on the latest iOS version, while the second retains your current iOS version.
Cydia has always been popular and always will be for as long as jailbreaking is possible, Don’t miss out on all it has to offer; Jailbreak your device and install Cydia today.