Crosswords for iPhone/iPad

Available on the iOS App Store

Crosswords is free and comes with 40 puzzles!

Additional bundles are available as in-app purchases.

Purchase Crosswords Pro for just $9.99 and gain unlimited puzzle downloads!

System Requirements

Requires iOS 8.0 or greater. Downloading new puzzles requires an active connection to the internet via 3G, 4G, LTE or WiFi.

View the Crosswords for iPhone/iPad FAQ! Have questions about Crosswords for iPhone/iPad? Find answers at the Crosswords for iPhone/iPad Frequently Asked Questions page!

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Frequently Asked Questions:

General Questions

  1. What is the difference between Crosswords and Crosswords Classic?

    Crosswords is a complete re-design of our award-winning Crosswords Classic for iPhone/iPad app, and optimizes the crossword playing experience. It contains the following new features and improvements on Crosswords Classic:

    • Puzzle grid previews in the puzzle list.
    • Provider descriptions, activity and difficulty levels available on the sources screen.
    • A pop-up puzzle grid menu to streamline puzzle solving.
    • Improved provider lists, allowing quick-and-easy access to the setters you love to play.

  2. Can I run Crosswords under iOS 7?

    Yes, Crosswords is back-compatible with iOS 7.

  3. Is Crosswords really free?

    Crosswords is free to download, and comes with 40 free Starter Puzzles. You can purchase additional puzzle bundles within the app, as well as purchase an $9.99 in-app upgrade to allow you to download puzzles from a wide variety of puzzle providers.

  4. Can I upgrade from Crosswords Classic to Crosswords Pro?

    If you previously purchased Crosswords Classic, you can upgrade to the full version of Crosswords for the discounted price of $3.99. That's a savings of $6.00!

    To upgrade, simply tap on the 'Upgrade' option. As long as you have Crosswords Classic installed on your device, you should see the upgrade price listed as $3.99 instead of $9.99.

  5. What if I can’t upgrade to iOS 8? How will I play puzzles?

    You can continue to use and download new puzzles via Crosswords Classic, in iOS 8 or a prior iOS version, and we will continue to support Crosswords Classic with bug fixes. However, due to our focus on iOS 8 and future iOS updates, we will not be adding new features to Crosswords Classic.

  6. Which providers does Crosswords support?

    Crosswords has support for the following providers:

    US-style Providers
    Name Schedule Difficulty
    American Values Club Crossword (Premium subscription required) Weekly (Wednesday) Moderate
    Andy Kravis, Cruciverbalist at Law
    Weekly (Saturday) Medium/Hard
    BuzzFeed (Archives only - ceased publishing on July 19th, 2016) Monday-Friday Easy
    Chronicle of Higher Education Weekly (Sunday) Moderate
    Cox & Rathvon/Hook Sunday Puzzles (Boston Globe) (Archives only - moved to the Premium Provider CRooked Crosswords on February 3rd, 2013) Weekly (Sunday) Very Hard/Amazingly Hard
    CRooked Crosswords: Cox & Rathvon/Hook Sunday Puzzles (Premium subscription required) Weekly (Sunday) Very Hard/Amazingly Hard
    Neville Fogarty
    (Archives only - ceased publishing on October 3rd, 2014.)
    Weekly (Friday) Medium
    Glutton for Pun
    Weekly (Wednesday) Very Hard
    Liz Gorski's Crossword Nation
    (Archives only - subscription-only since December 27th, 2017.)
    Weekly (Tuesday) Easy
    Ink Well
    (Archives only - ceased publishing on June 24th, 2014.)
    Weekly (Friday) Moderate
    Jonesin' Weekly (Tuesday) Quick/Moderate
    (King Features)
    Monday-Saturday Easy/Simple
    Matt Gaffney's Crossword Contest (Premium-only as of January 1st, 2015) Weekly (Friday) Moderate
    Murchie's Monday Fills Weekly (Monday) Quick/Moderate
    Newsday Daily Moderate
    The Onion A.V. Club (Archives only - ceased publishing on December 5th, 2012) Weekly (Thursday) Moderate
    People Magazine (Archives only - ceased publishing on November 22nd, 2013) Monthly (Friday) Simple/Easy
    (King Features)
    Weekly (Sunday) Quick/Moderate
    Puzzle Express Weekly (Monday) Simple
    Brendan Emmett Quigley Monday & Thursday Moderate/Difficult
    (King Features)
    Monday-Saturday Simple/Easy
    (Archives only - ceased publishing on May 31st, 2011)
    Daily Easy/Quick
    Tulsa World
    (Archives only - changed syndicates on June 11th, 2011)
    Daily Easy/Quick
    Washington Post Puzzler
    (Archives only - last available on August 12th, 2012)
    Weekly (Sunday) Difficult
    Washington Post TV
    (Archives only - ceased publishing on November 6th, 2011)
    Weekly (Sunday) Simple/Easy
    World of Crosswords Monthly (Sunday) Moderate
    UK-style Providers
    Name Schedule Difficulty
    Manchester Evening News (Archives only - ceased publishing online on September 7th, 2013) Daily Easy/Simple
    Stickler Weekly
    (Archives only - last available on July 22nd, 2015)
    Weekly (Wednesday) Difficult
    Sydney Morning Herald
    (Archives only - ceased publishing online on August 29th, 2009)
    Daily Easy
    Cryptic Providers
    Name Schedule Difficulty
    The Herald Cryptic
    (Archives only - went premium-only on October 4th, 2010)
    Daily Hard
    Sydney Morning Herald Cryptic
    (Archives only - ceased publishing online on August 29th, 2009)
    Daily Very Hard
    French Providers
    Name Schedule Difficulty
    Le Monde
    (Archives only - ceased publishing online on January 4th, 2011)
    Daily Moderate

    Please note: this provider list is subject to change.

  7. I have a paid account with a newspaper – can I use my account to download puzzles from their website?

    Yes, but only if they're a supported provider. To enter your credentials, go to the 'Crossword Sources' list (available via 'Back' on the puzzle list screen on iPhone, or by tapping 'All Puzzles' on the puzzle list screen on your iPad.) Then scroll down to Disabled sources and tap on the premium provider, then tap 'Credentials: Not Entered'.

  8. Can I import my own puzzles?

    You can import puzzles by tapping on a .puz file in Safari, or by tapping on a .puz file within an email message in

    You can also import puzzles available online by tapping on 'More' on the puzzle list, then tap 'Browse the Web'. Enter in your puzzle link in the url field, and Crosswords should download and add your puzzle to the puzzle list!

  9. Can I transfer my puzzles and puzzle progress from Crosswords Classic to Crosswords?

    Unfortunately puzzles and puzzle progress cannot be synced between Crosswords Classic and Crosswords. Sorry!

  10. Can I use Crosswords if my iPod touch or iPad isn't connected via WiFi?

    Yes, you can fill in crosswords if you aren't connected to the internet. However, you can only download puzzles and view leader board scores via your phone's internet connection or via WiFi.

  11. How do I delete Crosswords from my device?

    To delete Crosswords from your handheld, simply go to your iPhone/iPod touch home page, then tap and hold the Crosswords icon until the icons start shaking. Tap the 'X' in the corner of the Crosswords icon, then confirm that you want to delete it.

  12. I have some ideas and suggestions for Crosswords!

    We'd love to hear your feedback! You can send feedback by going into 'Settings', then tap 'About' and select the 'Feedback, Questions?' link, or you can email us at and we'll get right back to you!

  13. Can I suggest a puzzle or puzzle provider?

    You certainly can - just click here and fill out the form, and we'll look into adding your requested puzzles to Crosswords!

Downloading and Playing Puzzles

  1. How do I get new puzzles?

    To get new puzzles, scroll to the top of any sources or provider/puzzle list and pull DOWN until you see the spinning download icon and the text 'Release to Grab Recent'. This will download all of the latest crossword puzzles to your device.

  2. But I want more puzzles! How do I play older puzzles?

    You can download older puzzles from our archives by tapping the More button at the bottom of the provider/puzzle list screen then select the 'Older Puzzles'. Then all you have to do is choose which day you want puzzles from!

  3. Can I buy additional puzzle packs?

    You can purchase additional puzzle packs via the 'Bundles' section on the provider/puzzle list screen.

  4. I'm sick of my puzzles. How do I remove them?

    To delete puzzles from your puzzle list, you can either swipe-to-delete them, or go to a puzzle list screen and tap 'Edit'. Want to delete all of the puzzles, or just your incomplete, or completed puzzles? After you've tapped the 'Edit' button, tap the 'Delete' button and then select an option.

  5. Can I download a puzzle that I've already deleted?

    No problem. Just bring up the puzzle calendar via 'More' and select 'Older Puzzles'. Tap and hold on the date of the puzzle you deleted, and all deleted puzzles for that day will be re-downloaded.

  6. How do I navigate the puzzle grid?

    You can simply tap on the squares in the puzzle grid. If you're playing in portrait mode, the left and right arrows at the bottom of the screen move you to the next/previous clue. You can also 'swipe' the clue bar with your finger to advance to the next available adjacent square. If you're playing in landscape mode, you can simply tap on the clues to navigate the grid.

  7. How do I switch between across and down?

    Just tap on the active, yellow, square to toggle from across to down (and vice versa). If you're playing the puzzle in portrait mode, you can also tap on the middle of the clue bar at the bottom of the screen.

  8. Can I fill in my answers in 'pencil' instead of in 'pen'?

    Yes, you can! Please note: you can only enter letters in pencil if you have 'Highlight Mistakes' turned OFF. In the bottom-left-hand corner of the keyboard (below the 'A'), you should see a pen or pencil icon. Tap that button to change whether you want to answer in pencil or pen. When entering in pencil, you'll automatically skip over letters in pen.

  9. Can I enter multiple letters in a square?

    To enter multiple letters, you can tap on the grid with two fingers. You can also enter rebus mode by tapping-and-holding on the grid to bring up the context menu, then select 'REBUS'.

    iPad: You can also press 'REBUS' on the on-screen keyboard.

  10. How do I toggle the numeric keyboard?

    iPhone/iPod-only: Some puzzles, such as the occasional puzzle from the New York Times, requires the ability to enter a number into the grid. To enter a number into a square, simply tap and hold down any letter key in the top row of the keyboard (additional non-alphanumeric characters can be entered by tapping-and-holding on the other two key rows).

    After holding for a second, a numeric pop-up keyboard will appear – do not lift up your finger! Simply drag your finger up onto the number you want to enter into the grid. Once you lift your finger from the screen, the numeric keyboard will disappear.

    iPad: To enter numeric characters, press the '123' button on the on-screen keyboard.

  11. Can I hide the keyboard?

    To hide the keyboard, simply tap and swipe from the top of the keyboard down to the bottom. If you're having problems, try tapping down on 'Y' and then quickly slide your finger down to the bottom (or side) of the screen. To display the keyboard, simply tap any square.

  12. I like to get up close and personal with my puzzles. Can I zoom in on the squares?

    Certainly! To zoom out, simply 'pinch' the section of the grid. To zoom in, simply 'unpinch' the screen.

  13. How can I view both the puzzle and clues at the same time?

    iPhone/iPod tip: All you need to do is turn your iPhone so it's in landscape mode.

  14. How can I view all of the clues at once?

    iPhone/iPod-only: While viewing a puzzle, simply tap on 'Clues' at the top of the screen.

  15. How do I view the puzzle info and my puzzle stats?

    You can view each puzzle's information and leader board scores by tapping on the circled 'i' icon in the puzzle list, or by tapping on the timer while playing a puzzle.

    iPad-only: You can also view a puzzle's information while playing a puzzle by tapping on puzzle's title.

  16. Can I cheat and have the program tell me when I've made a mistake?

    On iPhone, go to the Crossword Sources screen. Then, on iPhone or iPad, tap the 'Settings' gear at the bottom of the screen, and then change the 'Show Errors While Solving' option.

  17. How can I view additional hint options?

    Additional hint options can be viewed by tapping-and-holding on the grid until you see the puzzle context menu appear.

  18. Can I check the entire puzzle for errors?

    You can do so by tapping-and-holding on the grid until you see the 'Check' option and then tap-and-hold 'Check'.

  19. Can I reveal an entire puzzle?

    You can do so by tapping-and-holding on the grid until you see the 'Reveal' option and then tap-and-hold 'Reveal'.

  20. What are the black and red triangles that sometimes appear in a square?

    Those triangles only appear in a square that you've previously revealed. These marks will not be displayed if you have chosen to show errors.

  21. Is there a running counter available while solving a puzzle?

    Yes. By default this option is turned off, but you can enable it by going to 'Settings' and turning 'Show Puzzle Timer' to 'ON'.

  22. Can I print a puzzle?

    You can print puzzles by pulling up the puzzle info (either by tapping on the 'i' icon next to a puzzle in the puzzle list or, while viewing the puzzle, tap on the puzzle timer.

  23. Can I shuffle a cryptic solution?

    Unfortunately you cannot shuffle cryptic solutions at this time. We hope to add this feature in a future update.

Syncing Puzzle Progress

  1. What do I need to sync with my iPhone/iPad/iPod/Android?

    Syncing puzzles between devices in Crosswords requires either a Game Center or a Crosswords account. We recommend using a Crosswords Account to syncing between iOS devices and Android devices.

  2. What do I need to sync with my Mac?

    Syncing puzzles from Crosswords or Crosswords for Android requires Crossword Light for Mac, or purchasing Crosswords for Mac from the Mac App Store.

  3. How do I set up puzzle syncing?

    To set up puzzle syncing, enable your Game Center account when prompted (if you're using an iOS device), or create a Crosswords Account. You can enable these by tapping on the Settings gear, then scroll down and tap on the Account option.

    Once your account has been enabled, tap Puzzle Sync to turn syncing to 'ON'. Make sure you've enabled the same account on any devices that you want to sync to.

  4. Can I use my Game Center account to sync puzzle progress?

    If you're using Crosswords, then yes (unfortunately there's a bug in Crossword Light that currently prevents Game Center syncing)! Just make sure you enabled your account via Settings and that 'Puzzle Sync' is toggled to 'ON'. Syncing via Game Center from Crosswords to Crosswords for Mac will be available in a future Crosswords for Mac update.

  5. My puzzles aren't syncing!

    Please note that only puzzle progress is synced; puzzle lists are not. Puzzle progress is only synced when you open up a puzzle, close a puzzle, or turn off your device. Simply download a previously played puzzle from another device in Crosswords, then open it. You should be prompted that a saved solution is available. Click 'Update' and your prior puzzle progress will be inserted into the puzzle.

    If you're not seeing a 'Saved Solution Available' dialog, try exiting out of the puzzle on the original device and open a new puzzle. Then re-open the same puzzle in your secondary device.

Multiplayer, Leader Boards and Accounts

  1. What are the leader boards?

    Leader boards allow users to compete to see who can finish a puzzle first. All you have to do is sign up for an account (see the following question) and every time you complete a puzzle, your elapsed time will be uploaded to the leader board for all players to see!

  2. Where are the leader boards?

    Leader boards can be accessed by swiping to the left on the puzzle info screen while playing a puzzle. They can also be viewed by tapping on the 'i' icon for a puzzle in the puzzle list. If you're on an iPhone, tap on the arrow on the grid. Then left-swipe on the puzzle info to view the leader board.

  3. Can I use my Game Center account with the leader boards?

    Yes! To enable your Game Center account in Crosswords, simply enable Game Center which prompted.

  4. How do I sign up for an account?

    If you do not have a Game Center account, you'll be prompted to enter one when you open Crosswords.

    If you don't want to use Game Center, cancel the sign-up, then go to 'Settings' and tap on 'Account' and create a 'Crosswords Account'. If you used a Crosswords Account with Crosswords Classic, you can use the same account information in Crosswords.

  5. What if I don't remember my account password?

    If you don't remember your account password, you can reset your password by filling out our Lost Password form.

  6. What if I don't want my times to be posted on the leader board?

    If you've created an account but don't want your scores to be posted to the leader board, just delete your nickname from the 'Crosswords Account' screen under 'Settings'.

  7. What happens to my score if I use hints?

    We have two separate leader boards: one is for users that don't use hints, and one for those who do. If you've used a hint (which includes revealing answers, checking and showing errors), then your time will be displayed on the 'Hints' leader board.

  8. My puzzle times aren't showing up in the leader board! Why not?

    Right now, scores aren't displayed for solution-less puzzles until a solution is available. This includes People Magazine, Telegraph, and contest puzzles.

    Otherwise, make sure you've created an account by going to 'Settings' > 'Account'. Make sure you have a nickname assigned to your account. Also, to keep the 'Hints' leader board fair, we will not submit a score if less than 75% of the puzzle is complete and the user selects 'Solve Entire Puzzle'. If you're still having problems uploading scores, please contact us.

  9. Can I view the leader board scores without completing the puzzle?

    Right now, the only way is to visit our web-based leaderboard.

  10. How often are leader board scores updated?

    Leaderboard scores are updated every 30 minutes, but you can also pull-down on the leader board to refresh it.

Additional Options

  1. How can I keep the game from skipping completed squares

    You will find an option to prevent this under 'Settings'.

  2. Can I keep it from automatically jumping to the next clue?

    You will find an option to prevent this under 'Settings'.

  3. Can I clear all of the errors in a puzzle or the entire puzzle?

    Yes, while viewing the puzzle you want to reset, just tap and hold down on the 'backspace' key. A popup will appear, allowing you to either clear the entire puzzle, or just clear errors.

  4. Can I set which papers and providers I download puzzles from?

    Yes! On the iPhone, go to the 'Crossword Sources' screen; on the iPad you'll want to tap 'All Puzzles' (or, if you're viewing a single provider, tap on the provider's name). Scroll down to 'Active Sources' or 'Disabled' and then tap the 'i' icon next to each provider to view information on the provider and enable, or disable, it. You can also bulk edit providers by tapping on 'Edit' next to 'Crossword Sources'.

Common Provider Problems

  1. Where did the NY Times puzzles go?

    Unfortunately the NY Times has requested that we remove authenticated access to their puzzles from our apps. While they used to offer their puzzles in a downloadable format, they no longer do, and have rescinded the option to offer previously downloadable puzzles.

    We're investigating alternate import options but, for now, we suggest that you contact the New York Times puzzle department and request that they offer their puzzles in a more flexible downloadable format, such as JPZ.

  2. Where did the Telegraph and Independent puzzles go?

    Unfortunately the Telegraph Media Group has requested that we remove access to their puzzles from our apps, which means that we no longer offer Telegraph or Independent puzzles.

  3. Where did the Cox/Rathvon & Hook (Boston Globe) puzzles go?

    This provider has decided to move to a subscription model. You can subscribe to their puzzles at To download their puzzles via Crosswords, tap on the Settings gear, then select 'Select Puzzle Providers' and tap 'Enter Premium Subscription Info' under 'Crooked Crosswords'. Enter your email address and the password you were provided, and their crosswords will be available the next time you download puzzles.

    If you encounter problems with your credentials, or issues with the puzzles, please contact

  4. Where did the The Onion AV Club puzzles go?

    The Onion AV Club ceased publishing crossword puzzles in December, 2012, but the authors have set up a new subscription service for their puzzles. To subscribe, please visit The American Values Club Xword.

    To download their puzzles via Crosswords, tap on the Settings gear, then select 'Select Puzzle Providers' and tap 'Enter Premium Subscription Info' under 'American Values Crossword'. Enter your email address and the password you were provided, and their crosswords will be available the next time you download puzzles.

    If you encounter problems with your credentials, or issues with the puzzles, please contact

  5. I can't download puzzles via Puzzle Pointers or Cruciverb through your 'Browse the Web' feature!

    The most common problem that occurs when trying to import puzzles is simply that the puzzle does not exist at the link that you've tapped on. Several of the sites featured in the 'Browse the Web' list have a number of bad/future links (including the Puzzle Pointer website). In these cases, please note that we do not own or operate any of the the sites linked in the 'Browse the Web' browser, and we cannot provide support for missing puzzles. Sorry!

  6. What happened to the Washington Post TV?

    The Washington Post TV is no longer being published, however, older Washington Post TV Puzzler puzzles are still available via the puzzle archive.

  7. Tulsa World puzzles have offset clues/I no longer receive Tulsa World puzzles!

    Tulsa World was experiencing a number of problems with their prior crossword provider, including a clue offset issue that caused grid alignment problems with the second half of their puzzles. They've since switched puzzle providers, and we're currently unable to download their puzzles. Our apologies for the inconvenience!

  8. Where did the Philadelphia Inquirer puzzles go?

    At the request of the puzzle author we have removed their puzzles from Crosswords. Our apologies for the inconvenience!

  9. Where did the Wall Street Journal puzzles go?

    Unfortunately the Wall Street Journal has requested that we remove their puzzles from Crosswords. However, they are still available weekly at and can be imported via the Puzzle Calendar (the '+' button on the Puzzle List screen) > 'Browse the Web'. Our apologies for the inconvenience!

  10. I no longer receive the Globe & Mail!

    Unfortunately the Globe & Mail has requested that we remove their puzzles from Crosswords, so we can no longer support them within Crosswords. Sorry!

  11. Where did the Houston Chronicle puzzles go?

    The Houston Chronicle has changed providers and now features Sheffer and Premier puzzles. If you're looking for CrosSynergy puzzles and are running Crosswords on an Android or iOS device, you can download them by tapping on the '+' button while viewing the puzzle list,

  12. I no longer receive Le Monde puzzles!

    Unfortunately it appears that Le Monde has discontinued publishing puzzles on their website as of January 4th, 2011. Consequently, Crosswords can no longer download puzzles for them. Sorry!

  13. Where did the Village Voice puzzles go?

    Village Voice puzzles are now known as 'Ink Well', as these puzzles no longer appear in the Village Voice.

  14. Where did the Guardian/Observer puzzles go?

    Unfortunately Guardian News & Media Ltd has requested that their puzzles no longer be made available from within Crosswords, and after July 18th, 2010 you will not be able to download any Guardian or Observer puzzles. Our apologies for the inconvenience!

  15. I no longer receive New York Sun puzzles!

    Unfortunately the New York Sun ceased publishing on September 30th, 2008. The last available puzzle was October 3rd, 2008.

  16. Why do I no longer receive Sydney Morning Herald puzzles?

    Unfortunately the Sydney Morning Herald has decided to only print their crosswords in the print edition of the paper – they’ll no longer be available online. Consequently, Crosswords for iPhone/iPad can no longer download new Sydney Morning Herald puzzles. However, old puzzles are currently still available via the archives.

  17. Why do I no longer receive The Herald Cryptic?

    Unfortunately The Herald has decided to move their puzzles behind a pay wall and, at this time, Crosswords does not support their authentication system. Consequently, Crosswords for iPhone/iPad can no longer download new Herald Cryptic puzzles.

  18. I can't view hints for today's Telegraph puzzle!

    Unfortunately the Telegraph doesn't publish hints for a puzzle until the next day's puzzle is available (and, in some cases, even longer).

    However, Crosswords will automatically look for available hints every time you tap 'Get Today's Puzzles' and update the puzzle when they're available, so if your current puzzle is hint-less, try viewing it again the next time you download new puzzles.

Common Application Problems

  1. The app hangs when I complete a puzzle!

    There is a known bug with leaderboard accounts in v.3.51 that can the app to hang upon completing a puzzle. This bug has been fixed in v.3.52, currently available in the App Store.

  2. I can't see the entire keyboard!

    There is a known bug in v.3.5 that prevents the entire keyboard from being displayed while playing in portrait mode. This bug has been fixed in v.3.51 (although we suggest waiting for v.3.52) but, until then, we suggest disabling the Split keyboard by exiting Crosswords, then open the Settings app and go to General > Keyboards.

  3. I have Crosswords Classic installed, but I'm not able to access the discounted Crosswords Pro upgrade!

    Crosswords Pro uses iCloud to verify Crosswords Classic upgrade. Please make sure that you've enabled iCloud via your device's 'Settings'. If you're still encountering problems, please see this FAQ item.

  4. I can't install Crosswords Pro on a second device without re-purchasing the upgrade!

    Unfortunately there's a known bug that prevents some users from freely installing a previously purchased Crosswords Pro upgrade on more than one device. This bug will be fixed in the next update.