How to Password Protect Google Play Purchases on the Nexus 7

Because the Nexus 7 is affordable, small and relatively durable it makes for a great tablet to share with the entire family, including younger users who can easily run up a high bill in the Google Play store.

Reader Mara bought the Nexus 7 for her 5-year old son to use, and wants to make sure he can’t buy apps in Google Play without approval, just like on her iPad.

While the Google Play store doesn’t turn the setting on by default, it allows users to set a PIN for Play Store purchases so they don’t have to worry about others buying apps while using the tablet.

Nexus 7 Google Play PIN for purchases
Setting a PIN for Google Play purchases prevents accidental purchases.

We highly recommend setting up a Google Play PIN to prevent children from going on an app or movie shopping spree.

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How to Set a Google Play Password on the Nexus 7

These directions should work on any Android device running a recent version of the Google Play store, but are targeted towards Android 4.1 Jelly Bean on the Google Nexus 7 tablet.

Open the Google Play Store.

How to set PIN Google Play Purchases Step 1
Open Google Play settings.

Tap on the Menu icon in the upper right.

Tap on Settings.

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Google Play PIN step 2
Google Play security settings.

Scroll down and tap on Set or Change PIN.

Enter the PIN twice.

Google Play PIN step 3
Choose a secure PIN.

Tap on the box to Use PIN for purchases.

Google Play Store PIN Nexus 7
Don’t forget this final step.

That’s it. Any purchase will now require a PIN before completing. This is also a good time to check out the content settings if you want to restrict certain ratings of apps.

While this system will likely prevent a 5-year old from accidentally purchasing apps and movies it is very easy to reset the PIN, so don’t use this as a means of preventing older users or those with malicious intent from making purchases on Google Play.

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Josh Smith is Editor of GottaBeMobile and Notebooks.com. He's always looking for ways to help you get the most of your gear and loves to talk about tech on radio and TV. Josh uses an iOS and Android devices as well as Mac and Windows Computers. Josh Smith on Google+ Email: [email protected]

15 COMMENTS

  1. Josh you are AWESOME!! I just finished setting my security locks! I have spent over 2 1/2 hours on hold and
    am still waiting for a response from the google support team which I contacted 56 hrs ago. I really appreciate you
    Responding so promptly and helping with my problem!!

    Mara

  2. This setting seems crazy. It’s a perfectly good idea, but shouldn’t you at least have to enter the PIN in order to remove it or turn off the ‘require PIN’ setting ?

    • I just looked at my tablet and “Use PIN for purchases” was grayed out until I set a PIN. I’m not going to test it, but I’m wondering if in-app purchases can be made without a PIN.

  3. What can’t the Google play account be password protected? It’s a bit silly to protect every device for accidental purchases

  4. Excellent Article … just allowed my son to play my wife’s nexus 7 again … after he nearly purchased a £70 game.

  5. This is stupid of Google! Anyone can just uncheck and spend a fortune in app purchases or movies! I am going to return the amateur tablet for a real Apple one.

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