iOS 6 beta no longer requires Apple ID password for free apps

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
With the latest beta of iOS 6, users are no longer required to enter their Apple ID password when downloading free software from the App Store.

The change, currently available to developers testing the latest preview of iOS, was first discovered by a poster on Reddit and highlighted on Monday by Cult of Mac. It's unknown whether that functionality will come to users in the final release of iOS 6, when it launches for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch this fall.

Since the first beta of iOS 6 was released in June, developers have already been able to re-download previously purchased applications without entering the password for their Apple ID account. By removing the need to enter a password when downloading free software in the latest beta, it would appear that Apple is looking to cut down on the number of times iOS users are prompted to enter their Apple ID password.

With an Apple ID account on an iOS device, a user's credit card information is stored and content like applications and music can be quickly purchased by simply entering the account password. But many of the selections available on the App Store are free software which does not result in a charge to the user's credit card.

Regardless, in all current public builds of Apple's iOS mobile operating system, users are required to enter their password. If a transaction was completed recently, users are given a 15-minute window during which additional purchases can be made.

Stores


One notable exception to the 15-minute window applies to in-app purchases. That change was made by Apple with iOS 4.3 in March of 2011 in response to complaints from parents whose children made expensive in-app purchases when using so-called "free to play" games available on the App Store.

iOS also includes built-in restrictions that can allow users to disable functions like installing or deleting applications from the App Store. In-app purchases can also be specifically barred from the built-in Settings application in iOS.

The App Store itself will also be redesigned and improved when iOS 6 launches later this year. It sports a new look with a black theme at the top and bottom, and user interface tweaks like allowing applications to install in the background without returning users to the home screen.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 51


    Finally! Been waiting for this since 2.0.

  • Reply 2 of 51



    #next_pages_container { width: 5px; hight: 5px; position: absolute; top: -100px; left: -100px; z-index: 2147483647 !important; }
    It probably didn't make sense to ask for a password for free apps, except possibly for apps rated 17+.


     
  • Reply 3 of 51
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member


    What if an app you download does the paid/free split with previously free downloaders getting the paid version for free via the update?



    I've had that happen before, and that was the right way to do it. If you don't tie the free downloads to the Apple ID, there won't be a way to determine you've downloaded the free version in the past.

  • Reply 4 of 51
    richlrichl Posts: 2,213member


    Next up: auto-download of free updates in iTunes and on-device (via WiFi), please? :)

  • Reply 5 of 51

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by RichL View Post


    Next up: auto-download of free updates in iTunes and on-device (via WiFi), please? :)



     


    You can do this with the iCloud service.


     


    Type your Username/Password into iTunes, your iPad, iPod Touch, or iPhone and when you download something from the iTunes Music Store, Book Store or App Store it will download on each device automatically.

  • Reply 6 of 51


    You also realise you don't need the password when updating Apps either...

  • Reply 7 of 51


    Maybe Google has a patent on the auto-downloading + installing of free updates. ;)


     


    Seriously, I really wish my iDevices would automatically update their applications without prompting me (for authentication or even to say "yeah, download the updates").  I don't think I've ever decided not to update any particular app that has an update.


     


    Just give me a log that tells me what has been updated.

  • Reply 8 of 51
    elmsleyelmsley Posts: 120member


    This is awesome for parents with children nagging for your password to download every single free app.

  • Reply 9 of 51
    enjournienjourni Posts: 254member


    Excellent. Now remove free software from the "purchases" list. I don't want to see or be offered to re-download crapware I already deleted.

  • Reply 10 of 51

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by elmsley View Post


    This is awesome for parents with children nagging for your password to download every single free app.



     


    This is horrible for parents with children who want to download every single free app. Corrected that for you. image

  • Reply 11 of 51
    mac voyermac voyer Posts: 1,283member
    The biggest improvement, IMO, is not being kicked out of the App store anymore when making a purchase. That makes it so much easier to stay in the store and spend more money. Come to think of it, maybe that's not so good. :)
  • Reply 12 of 51
    drfreemandrfreeman Posts: 111member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by DancesWithLysol View Post


     


    Seriously, I really wish my iDevices would automatically update their applications without prompting me (for authentication or even to say "yeah, download the updates").  I don't think I've ever decided not to update any particular app that has an update.


     


    Just give me a log that tells me what has been updated.



     


    Although for performance related and bug fix related updates, this would be welcomed, for other updates it can cause problems. For instance The Telegraph (UK) updated its app to charge for content. However, if you did not update the app, you managed to continue using the free service for some time. I think in this context, having manual update may be a good idea.

  • Reply 13 of 51
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    elmsley wrote: »
    This is awesome for parents with children nagging for your password to download every single free app.

    While I agree it's a nice feature there are cases in which I can see that any app installs should require a password. It becomes more of a chore if the only way to prevent free apps from being downloaded is to disable, buy, and then re-enable Restrictions in Settings. I'd hoped they would have an option for "Allow free apps to be downloaded without a password" or "Require free apps to use password for purchase" but I'm not seeing anything.
  • Reply 14 of 51
    evilutionevilution Posts: 1,360member


    Auto update would be a bad idea. A few times I have checked the feedback to find that the new update doesn't boot for many users so I skip it.


    Same goes for any updates after a company has sold out to Zynga as they ruin everything.


     


    I also think that there should be 3 sections in the app store, paid for, free but with in app purchasing and properly free.


    Personally I think that IAP is making games makers greedy.

  • Reply 15 of 51


    Odd. I read that weeks ago, yet it's news everywhere today.

  • Reply 16 of 51


    Well, I'm saying that auto updates should be an option in iOS.  Even if people like Evilution won't chose to use it, those of us who would like it should be able to.


     


    The way Android implements auto update is that you have a (optional) system-wide setting to auto update apps, and there is also a per-application setting (i.e. you can turn it off for some apps).  Also, if the security requirements for an app changes, it will not automatically update and requires the user to manually update and accept the security change.  For example, if an application that previously did not require access to the GPS sensor is updated and now requires GPS sensor access, this would be a manual update.

  • Reply 17 of 51
    ismofamismofam Posts: 41member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

    Apple is looking to cut down on the number of times iOS users are prompted to enter their Apple ID password.


    Well apple, I see another opportunity here: how about on option to disable Passcode Lock when you are on your home network? For example, I would like to use the "Remote" but not if i have to "slide to unlock" AND THEN enter the passcode just to lower the volume during commercials. This solution offeres acceptable security since the moment i step outside the range of the home network the passcode lock would get activated.

  • Reply 18 of 51
    vaelianvaelian Posts: 446member


    I really don't like the idea of actions that have an effect on my Apple ID not requiring a password.  Free apps are still added to my list of purchased apps, so as long as this information continues to be recorded to my account, I think a security check must be present.  This is not the same as simply installing the app, I'm not concerned about that, it's fine if people browse my collection of purchased apps and install something that I don't have there, but that doesn't mean they should have permission to change information on my Apple ID without passing a security check, especially when those changes are permanent (since it's not possible to delete apps from that list).

  • Reply 19 of 51
    pt123pt123 Posts: 696member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by DancesWithLysol View Post



    Seriously, I really wish my iDevices would automatically update their applications without prompting me (for authentication or even to say "yeah, download the updates").  I don't think I've ever decided not to update any particular app that has an update.


     



     


    It should be a choice whether to update or not. There are reason someone might not want to update. Maybe they have a multiple idevices and one of the devices is running older iOS version (4.2) and the app only supports newer iOS version (4.3). Maybe a new version of the app takes up much more space due to retina graphics and they do not have a retina display so no update.

  • Reply 20 of 51
    gazoobeegazoobee Posts: 3,754member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by RichL View Post


    Next up: auto-download of free updates in iTunes and on-device (via WiFi), please? :)



    We've already had this for a year.  Try to keep up. 

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