For as long as iPhones have been around, iOS has been one of the least open operating systems in popular use. This makes downloading apps like ShowBox for your iPad or iPhone quite complicated.
First things first; a little primer on the ShowBox app and why it’s so popular. It’s a quiet little app that frequently exists in the shadows of popular operating systems’ app stores. It’s never searchable, and must always be installed via .apk in order to get access to it. Why is it so popular? Because it allows its users to circumvent the fees, costs, and subscription prices that come attached to video based media such as television shows and movies.
If it sounds questionable in its legality, that’s because it is. There’s a reason that it isn’t traded openly on app stores, and there’s a reason that you won’t hear many people talking about it. The types of content that it allows users to stream without any cost is meant to be paid for, and therefore, any use of this app is going to come with its own fair share of risk. For ShowBox users–they are many–this isn’t a particularly large concern. Be aware going forward, however, that by using this app you’re circumventing how the support for this content is supposed to work. In most places across the world, downloading and playing copyrighted works is illegal. Many users think that, because they’re streaming the content, it doesn’t count as “downloading.” However, the stream is still buffering, and it’s still creating a version of the content on your device as it’s watched. Hence, you are absolutely still downloading it, and subject to the same legality concerns as everyone else. Be careful out there!
With that out of the way, we can talk about ShowBox and how it interacts with popular operating systems. On Windows PCs and Android devices, installation and use are a cinch. This is because these platforms are open to the installation of applications and software from any variety of sources. Without any necessary modifications to the respective device or its operating system, you can simply install the ShowBox app once you’ve downloaded it and get started.
iOS and other Apple operating systems and devices are a whole different story. Because this hardware and software feature a great deal of proprietary coding and technology (as well as a very strictly controlled app store), you’re not going to have an easy time circumventing the security and installation protocols that have been put in place. Still, there are a couple of ways you can go about it. Neither are particularly desirable, which is another reason that I typically warn users to be cautious when using such software as ShowBox. The steps necessary to get it working on an Apple device can sometimes cause irreparable damage to your device’s software installations and/or hardware. Additionally, downloading and installing software from outside of your respective app store can open you up to information theft, malware, and viruses.
Guess what? Mishaps during modification aren’t going to be covered by your warranty, either. If something goes horribly awry during the process, your device’s manufacturer isn’t going to be particularly eager to help you resolve it. The option, then, is to avoid apps like ShowBox altogether or take a deep breath, realize that you’re taking a big risk, and get to work.
How to Access ShowBox
The first thing you’re going to need is a source for the ShowBox installation, and right off the bat, things are going to get tricky. Because you’re using both an app and an installation process that aren’t approved by Apple, any of the mentioned methods of acquiring that work today could be patched tomorrow in a hotfix. If you’re wondering why you don’t see many guides on the ShowBox app, this is precisely the reason why. It’s hard to publish a step-by-step guide when the very next patch or update released by Apple could make the entire thing null and void.
Because of this, we’ll be doing a broad overview of possible methods that you might acquire ShowBox for your iPhone or iPad. Whether you’re downloading it through a software sharing program or jailbreaking your device (I break out into a cold sweat just writing that), we’ll provide some oversight for the options that are going to be available to you.
Though this method will constantly be at odds with various version of iOS for the above reasons (Apple rolls out updates very frequently), it’s the go-to method of acquiring ShowBox that I’d first suggest. It’s hard to use the word recommend, because of the risks you’re taking in engaging with this type of content. You can find a link to the website here, and even a cursory glance will show you that this is a way to downloads apps outside of the constraints of Apple’s App Store. If you’re less fond of vShare for any reason, there are some viable alternatives.
Before I can say, “I told you so,” (oops, I just did), realize that things are going to get tricky right away. Whether or not you’re able to find the app that you want is dependent upon whether it currently works on up-to-date Apple devices. If you don’t get any results by searching for “ShowBox,” try searching for “MovieBox.”
You’ll need to visit the vShare website and install this separate “app store” manually; you won’t find a link to it from Apple. Therefore, I recommend linking this guide over to your iPhone or iPad (if you’re not reading it on one already) and proceeding from there. If you are able to find a working version of either app, hang onto it tight; it might not be long before Apple patches in an update that removes your access to this technically “not allowed” application.
Jailbreaking your iOS Device
We’re ramping up the difficulty, folks, and with it, the risk. When your iOS device is running the most up-to-date version of the operating system, you’re still fine and dandy with any standing warranties and protections. When you “jailbreak” your device, however, all of those protections and safety nets drop right out from under you.
Because of this, I’m actually going to take the stance that you do not do this. However, this wouldn’t be a comprehensive guide without providing resources in order to do so. Realize, however, that there’s little way to go back after jailbreaking your device, and you’re severely limiting your ability to operate and update your device like you used to. Since most users don’t have any active desire to eat the cost of a broken device (it can happen, if something goes wrong) most shy away from the idea of jailbreaking their phone.
Since it would be impractical to detail every nuance and step to jailbreaking your iPhone or iPad in this guide, I’ll direct you where I usually send people who are interested in learning more about and performing the process: a guide that’s almost always up-to-date, from LifeHacker. Once your device is jailbroken, you’ll have a great deal more freedom in what you install on your iPhone or iPad. As the iron-tight lock of Apple’s App Store won’t be in place on your device any longer, you’ll have a much easier time finding and installing ShowBox.
Consider paying for the content! I’ll close out this guide with that one small nugget of advice, and I’ll certainly give it the fewest number of words. This is a ShowBox guide; for better or for worse, the majority of it is written from the consideration that finding it and installing it is your primary objective. Still, never forget that content providers such as Netflix, Hulu, HBO Now, and others are guaranteed to provide legal, reliable content at a fixed price.
However, it’s hard for this writer not to be concerned with the legality of apps such as ShowBox and MovieBox. On top of that, my own experience with them has proven them to be more trouble than they’re actually worth. Not only are the apps themselves frequently fluctuating and fussy, but the content available through them is constantly being taken down, reuploaded, changed around, or flat out doesn’t buffer well enough for you to stream your media. None of these are problems that you’ll have from a paid content provider like Netflix or Hulu.
Neither will those subscription-based apps provide the same variety of content, however. Therefore, I leave the choice in your capable hands, readers. Doing anything outside the bounds of what was intended with an iPhone or iPad is always going to carry inherent risks, but it’s not always going to cost you; paid content is always money out of your wallet, but so is a bricked device or stolen personal information. Choose wisely and tread carefully!
Since the world of jailbreaking and “outsider” apps is constantly shifting and changing, up-to-date information is invaluable. Getting access to ShowBox on your iOS device could require an entirely different process than above, depending on the changes that Apple makes to its devices. Chime in with your own comments, advice, and tales of encouragement or caution in the comments below!