How to Hide iTunes and App Store Purchases in Family Sharing

 Last Updated: Nov. 25, 2014 

Family Sharing makes it easy for all members of a family to download the music, movies, TV shows, books, and apps every other member of the family has purchased. It's a terrific way for families to save money and enjoy the same entertainment.

But there are some circumstances in which you may not want all the purchases you've made available to everyone in the family. For instance, parents might not want the R-rated movies they purchase to be available for their 8-year-olds to download and watch. The same is true for some songs and books. Luckily, Family Sharing makes it possible for each member of the family to hide any of their purchases from the rest of the family. This article explains how.

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How to Hide App Store Purchases in Family Sharing

Hide App Store Purchases in Family Sharing

To hide apps you've purchased at the App Store from your family members, do the following:

  1. Ensure that Family Sharing is set up
  2. Tap the App Store app on your iPhone to open it
  3. Tap the Updates menu in the bottom right corner
  4. Tap Purchased
  5. Tap My Purchases
  6. You'll see a list of all the apps you've download from the App Store. To hide an app, swipe from right to left across the app until the Hide button appears
  7. Tap the Hide button. This will hide the app from other Family Sharing users.

I'll explain how to unhide purchases on page 4 of this article.

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How to Hide iTunes Store Purchases in Family Sharing

Hide iTunes Purchases in Family Sharing

Hiding iTunes Store purchases from other Family Sharing users is fairly similar to hiding App Store purchases. The major difference, though, is that iTunes Store purchases are hidden using the desktop iTunes program, not the iTunes Store app on the iPhone.

To hide iTunes purchases like music, movies, and TV:

  1. Open the iTunes program on your desktop or laptop computer
  2. Click the iTunes Store menu near the top of the window
  3. At the homepage of the Store, click the Purchased link in the right-hand column. You may be asked to log into your account
  4. This will show you a listing of everything you've purchased from the iTunes Store. You can view Music, Movies, TV Shows, or Apps, as well as items that are in your library and those that are only in your iCloud account. Select the things you wish to view
  5. When the item you want to hide is displayed on the screen, hover your mouse over it. An X icon will appear at the top left of the item
  6. Click the X icon and the item is hidden.
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Hiding iBooks Purchases from Family Sharing

hide ibooks purchases from family sharing

Parents are likely to want to prevent their kids from accessing some of the parents' books via Family Sharing. In order to do that, you need to hide your iBooks purchases. To do that:

  1. Launch the iBooks program on your desktop or laptop computer (iBooks is Mac only as of this writing - Download at the Mac App Store)
  2. Click the iBooks Store button in the top left corner
  3. In the right-hand column, click the Purchased link
  4. This takes you to a listing of all the books you've purchased from the iBooks Store
  5. However you mouse over the book you want to hide. An X icon appears in the top left corner
  6. Click the X icon and the book is hidden.
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How to Unhide Purchases

Unhiding Purchases in iTunes

Hiding purchases can be useful, but there are some instances in which you'll need to unhide those items (if you need to re-download the purchase, for instance, you have to unhide it before you can download). In that case, follow these steps:

  1. Open the iTunes program on your desktop or laptop computer
  2. Click the Account menu at the top of the window, next to the search box (this is the menu with your first name in it, assuming you're logged in to your Apple ID)
  3. Click Account Info
  4. Log in to your Apple ID/iTunes account
  5. Scroll down to the iTunes in the Cloud section and click on the Manage link next to Hidden Purchases
  6. On this screen, you can view all your hidden purchases by type—Music, Movies, TV Shows, and Apps. Select the type you want
  7. When you've done this, you'll see all of your hidden purchases of that type. Beneath each one is a button labeled Unhide. Click that to unhide the item.

To unhide iBooks purchases, you need to use the iBooks desktop program, where the process works the same way.