For the longest time, every time I let my son use my iPad on his own I always felt the need to give him the dire warning, “DO NOT BUY ANYTHING!!” And still there was always that little worry that I’d end up with $20 worth of charges to my iTunes account because he just wanted more lives in Candy Crush or some such thing.
Of course, all my worry could have been avoided if someone had told me back then that I could restrict the usage of in-app purchases in the first place, but I didn’t even know to ask. And I can’t be the only parent in the world to have the same worry, so I figured that a handy little set of instructions was in order.
And, really, it’s just the easiest thing. Here are the steps:
- Go to
Settings, choose General, scroll down and choose Restrictions, and tap “Enable
Restrictions.” (see screen shot 1 at right)
- If this is the first time you have done this, you will be required to set a four-digit passcode. Confirm your passcode by typing it in a second time. (Make note of this passcode; any subsequent times you wish to make any changes to these restrictions you will need to enter it to proceed.
- Scroll down to the “Allowed Content” section and turn off the In-App Purchases. (see screen shot 2 below)
- It would also be wise at this point to change the “Require Password” option to “Immediately.” (One note: You will now have to enter a password every time you make a purchase, because this takes away that fifteen minute window you used to have after entering your password. But the security of not having surprise charges outweighs the potential hassle.)
It’s as easy as that. After taking these steps, nobody will be able to make in-app purchases on your iPhone or iPad -- not even you. That does mean that if you know you are going to be doing something that will require in-app purchases, you will need to repeat these steps and turn the In-App Purchases option back on.