Can’t Delete Apps on iPhone and iPad in iOS 12 or Earlier? Quick Way to Fix the Issue

So, you have found yourself in a situation where you can't delete apps on your iPhone or iPad? Read on to find out how to break this jinx without any hassle!

Finding too many useless apps hogging plenty of space on the iPhone, I thought of going for a cleanup drive. However, when I tried to enter the edit mode, the apps would wiggle, but the remove button (X) was missing. Seeing this weird thing, I started wondering why am I unable to delete apps on my iPhone.

After a bit of digging, I discovered the real reason why the iPhone apps won’t wiggle or delete. It’s actually a “Parental Control” feature that lets you stop anyone from removing apps on your iOS device. But the real villain behind the mess that had almost sent me on a crazy drive was my two-year-old boy who had accidentally disallowed the option to delete apps on my iPhone!

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Can’t Delete Apps on iPhone and iPad Running iOS 12? Here is the Fix

If you have also found yourself on the same pitch, bringing back the normalcy won’t be a big deal. Let me show you how it works!

Step #1. Open Settings app on your iOS device → Screen Time.

Tap on Settings then Screen Time in iOS 12 on iPhone

Step #2. Now, tap on Content & Privacy Restrictions. And then enter your Screen Time Passcode.

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Tap on Content & Privacy Restrictions in Screen Time

Step #3. Next, tap on iTunes & App Store Purchases.

Tap on iTunes & App Store Purchases in iOS 12 Restrictions Settings

Step #4. Next up, tap on Deleting Apps.

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Tap on Deleting Apps Under iTunes & App Store Purchases in iOS 12

Step #5. Up next, select Allow.

Select Allow to Delete Apps on iPhone and iPad Running iOS 12

Now, head over to the Home screen and try to delete the apps on your device. Simply touch and hold any app, you will now see the “X” remove button. Hit it and confirm to delete the app. Then, you are ready to go!

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Side Note: At any time you want to prevent anyone from deleting apps on your iOS device, follow the same steps and then select Don’t Allow in the end.

Unable to Delete Apps in iOS 11 or Earlier? Here is the How to

With iOS 12 or later, Restrictions has become the part of Screen Time. However, the process of stopping anyone from removing apps on the iPhone remains almost the same in iOS 11 or earlier.

Step #1. Open SettingsGeneral → Tap on Restrictions.

Tap on General and Select Restrictions in iOS 11 Settings

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Step #2. Enter your Restrictions passcode.

Enter Restrictions Passcode in iOS 11 Settings

Step #3. Now, turn on the switch next to Deleting Apps under Allow section.

Turn on Switch next to Deleting Apps in iOS 11 Restrictions Settings

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That’s it! You can now get rid of unwanted apps on your iPhone without any issue. Later, if you happen to change your mind and restrict others from deleting apps on your iOS device, follow the same steps and then turn off the switch in the end.

Wrapping up:

iOS 12 comes with an advanced parental control feature called Screen Time. It offers you several handy means and ways to get rid of the smartphone addiction. Features like the option to set the time limit for the individual app and keep track of the device usage make it highly-user-friendly. You can take full advantage of it to not just secure your content but also prevent your kid from going overboard.

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Dhvanesh Adhiya
Dhvanesh Adhiya is the founder and editor-in-chief who takes care of audio, visual, and textual contents uploaded on He is passionate about wonderful apps that change the way your iPhone interacts in your life.
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