My 13-year-old had an Apple ID before family sharing was available. In the span of a few days he had downloaded a bunch of messaging apps on his iPhone that we, the parents, do not approve of. We deleted them and instituted family sharing (to require approval of app downloads), but it still allows him to download these deleted apps because he had downloaded them before.

How can I clear out the previously downloaded apps so if he tries to download them again it will require him to "ask to buy?" Also, there are some downloads that are on his phone that I believe he found a way around family sharing. Is this possible? How can you prevent it?

  • 5
    As far as I am aware, you can't "disown" apps after they are already owned, which is the case for your son. The only easy way that I can think of is deleting his account, and then giving him a new one. I don't really think there is an easy way around family sharing; maybe he had the apps before? Also, in order to prevent the use of certain apps, there is a feature in IOS called restrictions. I would suggest checking it out.
    – Flare Cat
    Jan 10, 2016 at 20:33

3 Answers 3


You have to go into restrictions and take away their ability to install all apps and blocking the App Store. It’s a pain, but it is the only thing I’ve found that works. My son got ahold of his phone when the restrictions were off and got an app I didn’t like. Even when it was back on to where he had to have me “approve” new apps, it didn’t stop him from reloading the offensive one. Only restricting access to the App Store and all installations worked. Now if he finds out about an app, he has to hand me his phone.


If you control the Apple ID with which the apps have been downloaded, you can hide bought things from the list of 'previously purchased' apps, however I don't think that it also disables the download button if you go these apps' product pages directly.


Delete his old Apple ID and get a new one for him. There will be no application history on a new account.

  • It's hard to tell if this is a suggestion (meaning a comment) or an actual answer. Do you know if this works?
    – Allan
    Feb 23, 2018 at 20:54
  • It will work. The new Apple ID will not have any apps downloaded. The security work around was that the apps were previously downloaded and were therefore not stopped by family sharing. It isn't ideal (apple should fix this, or possibly already has, but it hasn't been answered in 2 years, so here's one answer)
    – dwightk
    Feb 24, 2018 at 16:20
  • That comment should be in your answer...
    – Allan
    Feb 24, 2018 at 18:22

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