Allow Free App Downloads Without Password Entry in iOS
You have likely noticed that downloading a free app from the iOS App Store triggers the ‘Enter Password’ dialog screen on an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. While this is a valid precaution to prevent unauthorized users from installing apps onto an iOS device, it’s not always desired, particularly for shared iPads and iOS devices used by multiple users and kids.
With the help of a simple settings adjustment, you can prevent iOS from requesting a password to download a free app, while still maintaining the password requirement for downloading paid apps.
How to Stop Password Requests to Download Free Apps in iOS
The iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch must be on the newest version of iOS to have access to this feature:
- Open the Settings app and head to “iTunes & App Store”
- Under the Apple ID username, choose “Password Settings” *
- Under the ‘Free Downloads’ section, toggle the switch for “Require Password” to the OFF position
- Exit Settings as usual, users can download free apps with the “Get” button in the App Store without having to enter a password
This has no impact on downloading paid apps or making in-app purchases, which should always be password protected to prevent unauthorized transactions on an iTunes Account (you can also just turn off in-app purchases in iOS too).
* For devices configured with parental control restrictions, you will find these options as part of the General > Restrictions settings.
Note this settings option is not available if you use Touch ID for password entry and device unlocking. It becomes available if you disable Touch ID, but Touch ID is usually a much better security mechanism than a simple password entry, so for iPhones that would not be recommended, though it could be valid for some shared iPads.
How useful this is likely depends on how the iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch is used, and for some situations this can be incredibly helpful, particularly for devices shared by families and kids.