Man­age your fam­ily’s spend­ing

Don’t let your kids have free rein over pur­chases – make them ask for per­mis­sion

Mac Format - - FEATURE -

Fam­ily Shar­ing asks you to en­ter de­tails of your credit or debit card so that Ap­ple can bill you for any pur­chases made by

your fam­ily. If that fills your mind with tabloid stories about tod­dlers run­ning up mas­sive bills on apps or in-app pur­chases, don’t worry – you can use the Ask To Buy fea­ture to stop them run­ning amok with your bank card in apps and Ap­ple’s down­load stores.

Ask To Buy is on by de­fault for any fam­ily mem­ber aged un­der 13 and can be turned on for any­one un­der 18. Any pur­chase at­tempt re­quires ap­proval from the fam­ily or­gan­iser or an ap­pointed par­ent/guardian (as the fam­ily or­gan­iser, se­lect some­one in the list of fam­ily mem­bers and you’ll see an op­tion to grant this sta­tus).

You can en­ter your Ap­ple ID’s pass­word or use Touch/Face ID to al­low a pur­chase, or refuse with a tap. Ap­proval is also needed for in-app pur­chases, iCloud stor­age up­grades, iTunes, App and iBooks Store pur­chases, sub­scrip­tions, and free apps. The last of those helps avoid kids in­stalling ad-laden apps.

Your fam­ily can share me­dia and apps on up to 10 de­vices per ac­count, but sub­scrip­tions and in-app pur­chases are tied to the in­di­vid­ual’s iCloud ac­count.

You can ap­ply tougher rules by us­ing the parental con­trols baked into iOS. In Set­tings > Gen­eral > Re­stric­tions, you can turn off the abil­ity to make in-app pur­chases – which has hugely re­duced how many re­quests we get – and you can block ac­cess to cer­tain ser­vices, such as the whole iTunes Store, or age-in­ap­pro­pri­ate con­tent.

Ev­ery­body in your fam­ily group shares a sin­gle pay­ment method, so you can more eas­ily keep track of who is spend­ing what.

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