Introducing Strongbox Universal

Strongbox is now a universal App. This means it runs on both iOS and macOS, and it also means you only need one license to take advantage of all Pro features on both platforms. This has been a much requested feature, and from a quick glance at our support inbox over the last year, this should massively reduce confusion for most users.

Let’s try to answer the most common questions our users have had over the last week or so as it rolled out.

What is Strongbox Universal

Strongbox Universal is a single Strongbox App for both iOS and macOS. There is a single App listing in both App Stores and a single Pro license for Pro users.

When did this happen?

We released our universal builds on the 28th July 2022.

Why did you unify your Apps between iOS and Mac?

Strongbox Universal simplifies things, especially for new users. It also simplifies things for existing users who use Strongbox on both platforms.

I already paid for Strongbox Pro on iOS, how do I get Pro on my Mac?

If you previously paid for a subscription or outright license on iOS, your license now covers macOS as well. Congratulations! 🎉

There are 2 kinds of iOS Pro license you could have, either an In App Purchase Pro license or an Outright Purchase license, depending on how you upgrade. Choose your license below:

I have an iOS Pro license that I purchased In App
  1. Make sure you are signed in using the right Apple ID on the Mac App Store
  2. Download Universal Strongbox here
  3. Strongbox may instantly detect your iOS license, but you might need to help it out. Go to the Upgrade screen (Strongbox > Upgrade) and click ‘Already Purchased’.
  4. You now have access to Strongbox Pro on macOS
I have an Outright iOS Pro license
  1. Make sure you are signed in using the right Apple ID on the Mac App Store
  2. Download Universal Strongbox (Outright) here (NB: It should be immediately available to you without charge. See below if you see a Price instead of a Cloud icon)
  3. You now have access to Strongbox Pro on macOS
I have an Outright iOS Pro license, but I see a Price beside the Outright Pro App on the Mac

This can happen to some Apple IDs, in fact it happened to some of our own during testing… Before you continue as indicated below, make 100% certain that the following is the case:

  1. You are absolutely certain you are signed in with the same correct Apple ID on both iOS and macOS – This is often the problem
  2. You are 100% definitely looking at this App on the App Store, and it is showing as:
  • On your iOS device as purchased
  • On your macOS device as not purchased

If that doesn’t work, then you will simply need to click the ‘Purchase’ or ‘Price’ button on the Mac App Store. This can feel a bit scary unfortunately, but you’ll get a couple of popups and warnings and then you’ll get a message saying ‘This Update is Free’. This appears to be an Apple issue with some Apple IDs.

I have Strongbox Pro on Mac, what happens now?

If you previously paid for Pro on macOS, you do not qualify for a free update to the Universal Strongbox app. Your macOS license will continue to work exactly as before, and you will receive updates, new features and bug fixes for life on macOS. If you would like to also use Strongbox Pro on your iOS devices, you could consider purchasing a new subscription or license.

Where can I get Strongbox Universal?

The best source for Strongbox as always is the App Store, and in particular our Freemium distribution here:

How does the 3 Month Free Trial Work

In line with Apple’s App Store guidelines, the Free Trial is part of a Yearly Auto-Renewable subscription. You sign up for the Yearly Pro subscription and you will automatically receive a 3-month free trial before you need to pay for the subcription. You can cancel this subscription at any time, before, during or after the Free Trial.

Is there any difference on macOS between the new Universal Apps and the previous macOS Apps?

Zero. Absolutely None. Both apps will remain identical feature wise forever. They will receive updates and features on the same schedule forever. No difference. Apple unfortunately provides no way for us to merge the Apps so we have to support both, which we will continue to do.

What about Strongbox Zero?

There have been no changes to Strongbox Zero, everything remains as before. We do have longer term plans to make a Zero version for macOS, and at that point we will endeavour to make Strongbox Zero and Universal App too.

Why are there 4 versions of Strongbox on the Mac App Store?

This is a long story… TLDR: Apple’s App Store does not allow us to hide builds for new users.

There are now 2 recommended ‘Universal’ Apps in the App Store that we recommend for all new users because they will work on both iOS and macOS with a single license:

Strongbox – Freemium In App Purchase – (Universal App for iOS and macOS)
Strongbox – Outright Lifetime Pro – (Universal App for iOS and macOS)

Older macOS Standalone Versions

There are also on the macOS App Store the 2 previous Apps for our existing customers who upgrade before Strongbox Universal licensing was possible:

Strongbox Freemium In App Purchase – (Runs on macOS Only)
Strongbox – Outright Lifetime Pro – (Runs on macOS Only)

Freemium In App Purchase vs Outright Pro – What’s the Difference?

These are actually two identical copies of Strongbox but they differ in the purchase method.

  • The Freemium version (allowing for a subscription based upgrade to Pro via In App Purchase)
  • The Outright Lifetime Pro version (where you purchase up front in the App Store)

Both offer the same Pro feature set and same update schedule. The only difference is that you pay upfront immediately for the Outright Purchase and the Icon has a cosmetic Pro tag on it (this is to fit in with Apple HIG/App Store guidelines).

The reason for this is that sometimes business sometimes prefer to buy in volume upfront. Freemium is to allow users to use the limited feature set for free or upgrade easily via In-App Purchase whenever they want to. It is important to know which version you previous purchased, was it up front, or was it an In-App Purchase? Your Apple receipt should say.

Will the Pro Version or License Work on All of My Devices (iPhone, iPad and Mac)?

Yes, Strongbox is now a universal App, which means it runs on both iOS and macOS, and uses a single license across these platforms.

The license is linked to your Apple ID. So no matter what device you use (iPhone/iPad/Mac), as long as you are signed in with the correct Apple ID, you will have access to Strongbox Pro.

NB: You may need to tap the ‘Restore Purchases’ or ‘Already Purchased‘ button on the Upgrade screen.


Note 1: If you’re not sure which version of Strongbox you have purchased you can click on the links above and you will be able to see in the App Store which one is available for you.

Note 2: If you have previously purchased one of the macOS only apps, then not to worry, you will continue receiving updates and features forever. In July of 2022, we made the required changes to Strongbox to be a ‘Universal App’ meaning it can run on both iOS and macOS platforms and so that is now our recommendation for new users

Note 3: You can change the App icon if you like at any time.

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