How to turn off or limit in-app purchases on iPhone or iPad

Whether you’ve got a game-crazy toddler running up your credit card bill buying coins and diamonds on your mobile device, or find yourself guilty of the same charges, fear not: your days of overspending and powerup-driven debt are over. Here’s how you can turn off in-app purchases in iOS 7 on your iPhone or iPad easily.

Disable in-app purchases

  • On your device’s Home screen, tap Settings and then select General > Restrictions.
  • Tap Enable Restrictions and enter a new secure 4-digit code (you’ll need this later, so make a note of it someplace safe). Re-enter the code to confirm it and you’ll return to the Restrictions menu.
  • You’ll see a list a of apps and that are allowed to run — tap In-App Purchases there to disable them.

    Disallow in-app purchases in the Restrictions menu
    Disallow in-app purchases in the Restrictions menu

And that’s it! If you want to be able to make in-app purchases occasionally, but still want to be prompted to think twice before you make a transaction, here’s a simple solution.

Limit in-app purchases by requiring a password every time

  • Launch Settings and navigate through to General > Restrictions again.
  • Enable in-app purchases.
  • Scroll down to the bottom of the menu and find the Require Password option, which is set to 15 minutes by default. Tap this and change the setting to Immediately.

    Set your device to request a password for every IAP
    Set your device to request a password for every IAP

This way, you’ll have to enter your password for every single in-app purchase you’re tempted to make — a good chance to think about whether you really need that coin doubler in Giant Boulder of Death.

Which apps end up costing you the most through in-app purchases? Post your biggest culprits in the comments below!