How to open zip files on an iPad and extract their contents

apple ipadJustin Sullivan/Getty Images

  • Your iPad cannot create zip files that store multiple compressed files together unless you download a third party app.
  • iPads can, however, provide access to the files contained within a zip, without having to install new apps or software.
  • Here's how to open a zipped file on your iPad using the Files app that comes standard with the device.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Zip files are great for storing lots of large files in one place without taking up too much room on your device, and they're an ideal way to transfer large amounts of data from one piece of hardware to another. That is, as long as you can get into the zip file and extract the individual files within.

Good news: if you have an iPad released in the past few years, you can open zip files and extract their files without having to download any new apps. While your iPad can't create a zipped file without third party software, you can always just create the zip on your computer, then send it to the iPad in question.

How to open zip files with an iPad

1. Locate the Files app - its icon is white with a blue folder - and launch it.

IMG_0157.PNGThe Files app is installed on your iPad by default.Steven John/Business Insider

2. Search for the name of the zip file (which will be "Archive" if you created it on a Mac and didn't rename it).

3. Click on the zip, which will have an icon that looks like a piece of paper reading "zip."

4. Tap "Preview Content."

IMG_0159.PNGOpen the zip and tap &quotPreview Content."Steven John/Business Insider

5. Now find the file you want to extract, and tap the icon of the arrow pointing up out of the box at the top corner of the iPad screen.

6. Tap "Save to Files" from the taskbar at the bottom of the popup window.

IMG_0160.PNGTap &quotSave to Files" in the Share menu.Steven John/Business Insider

7. Select the location where you'd like the file to be stored, then click "Add."

The file will be extracted from the zip and saved to your iPad. Repeat as necessary to extract as many files you want (or all of them) from the zip.

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