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Ask to buy not working and you’re totally exhausted to spend hours searching for a quick fix? Well, don’t worry as we are here with this guide where you will be able to not only find one but all the possible solutions for the issue. So let us talk about the same in detail-


Why the Ask to buy feature is not working?

There could be many reasons why your ask-to-buy feature has stopped working. It could be related to your device, to your child’s device or maybe some glitch. At times, we start getting into the technicalities so much that we forget that there could be an easy solution to the same. And that is why in this guide, we are going to discuss all the possible reasons why your ask-to-buy feature has stopped working along with their solutions. 


How to fix the Ask to buy not working issue?

So let us talk about the detailed solutions to avoid this issue even in future-

1- Ensure that the content is supported

The very first thing to look for if you’re facing ask to buy not working issue is whether the content you’re looking for is supported by this feature or not. Even though the feature is accessible in most of the categories, there is still some content such as content by educational institutions that is not supported by ask to buy feature. Other than that, if the content is from iTunes gifts, iTunes match or donations category, then the ask-to-buy feature will not work here as well.

2- Check for the notification again

It is quite a common mistake that anyone can make. You might have received a request notification but since you did not check it on time, it went to the queue of the notification and you couldn’t see it. In such cases, you will have to go to the notification panel and check if there’s a such request pending. Following is the method given for various iOS devices-

  • For your iPhone- If you’re using an iPhone, and the version is iOS 15 or later, then all you need to do is to swipe down the screen to the top and see if there’s such a notification pending. 
  • For your iPad- In your iPad, again, you need to swipe down your screen from left to top and scroll up a bit. You can see all your pending notifications there.
  • For your Mac- To check it on your Mac, you need to first tap on the date and time option available on your screen. You can see all the notifications there. If not, you can also swipe left from the left of your screen and scroll.

3- Re-check your Apple ID

If you know that the content is supported and you have already checked your notification panel again, then you must take verification of your Apple ID and ensure that it is the same Apple ID that you’re using in Apple TV, Apple books, App store and Apple music app. In case you’re not using the same ID, you will find this error which might cause trouble for you. Note that to make any sort of purchase through this feature, it is essential to have a fair log-in to the family sharing ID once. Now let us see the process via which you can cross-check the same-

  • For your apps- To check if you’re using the same ID, you need to open any app of your choice that comes under the ask-to-buy feature and tap on the right-corner option. You will be able to find the Apple ID there along with your name.
  • For iCloud- To check it on iCloud, you first need to go to Settings and click on your name. Once you tap there, you can find your Apple ID written.

4- Verify the child’s age

Since the whole purpose of using this feature is to keep control of your child’s purchases, you will have to go through a quick child verification process. If you’re thinking that since you’ve configured it once, you do not need to go through the verification process again, then you’re mistaken as in a few countries, like South Korea to name with, you will have to verify the age every time and this rule will vary as per your location. 

5- Ensure that the device is compatible with the feature

This is a very crucial point that you can not afford to miss. In most cases, people make the mistake of using such features on an outdated device and search for why it is not working. The very important part is to check if you’re using a device that is compatible with this feature or not. Note that this feature will work with iOS 8 and later versions only. Also, for Mac, you should have OS X Yosemite or later versions. You must check if your child’s device lies under the given criteria or not.

6- Try changing the approver

There may be some glitch due to which you aren’t receiving the ask-to-buy request on your ID. You can either wait and try after some time or if you’re in hurry, you can simply change the approver and try again. For doing the same, you need to follow the given steps-

For iOS 16 and later

  • First, go to settings.
  • Tap on Family.
  • Now you need to select the Family member name preferred by you (Where you want to send the requests).
  • Now click on Guardian.
  • Tap on the Set as Parent/Guardian option and it’s done.

For iOS 15 and earlier

  • Here, go to settings.
  • Tap on the Your Name option.
  • Now Go to the Family Sharing option.
  • Select the family member as per your choice.
  • Now click on Role and select it as Parent/Guardian.

For macOS Ventura and later

  • Go to the System Settings option.
  • Tap on Family.
  • Now go to the Family member’s name.
  • Now tap on Parent/Guardian.
  • Choose the Set as Parent/Guardian option.
  • Tap on done.

For macOS Monterey and earlier

  • Here, go to System Preferences.
  • Now tap on the Family Sharing option.
  • Hover to Family Sharing.
  • Tap on the Family member’s name option and edit it.
  • Now tap on Parents/Guardian.
  • Tap on Done.

7- Enable the Ask to Buy feature

At times since you haven’t enabled the Ask to buy feature, you are not able to see it and this issue is not as complicated as you thought it would be as by following the given steps, you will easily be able to enable the option.

Note- Even if you have already enabled this option but you are facing this issue, you can try disabling it and then enabling it again to see if the issue solves.

  • For your iOS devices- 
  1. Here, you need to go to Settings and tap on Family. 
  2. Now hover over the Family member option
  3. Now you can find the Require purchase approval. 
  4. First, turn it off and then wait for a few seconds. Again turn it on.
  • For your Mac device
  1. Here, go to the System Settings option.
  2. Now click on Family.
  3. Go to the Child’s name.
  4. Now you can see the Ask to buy option there.
  5. You need to turn it off and wait for a few seconds. 
  6. Now turn it on again.

8- Re-add your child

If you have tried everything but you’re still not sure how to fix this issue, then maybe you can also try removing your child’s ID from the family sharing group and then add him back. It would take some easy steps to accomplish this task but if you do it, you will be able to fix this glitch that you’re facing. Following is the step to complete the process through your iOS and Mac device-

Note- Please note that before you begin to remove your child’s ID, it is required to transfer his account to your secondary family sharing group as your child’s account needs to be linked through your account.

  • For iOS devices- Here, you need to follow the given steps-
  1. First, go to Settings.
  2. Now tap on your profile.
  3. Go to the Family Sharing option.
  4. Now tap on your child.
  5. Click on Remove your child’s name from the family.
  6. Confirm it.
  7. Once done, re-enter your child.
  8. Confirm it.
  • For Mac devices- Follow the steps given below-
  1. First, open the System Settings.
  2. Now go to your profile.
  3. Tap on the Family Sharing option.
  4. Now go to your Child’s name.
  5. Tap on Remove.
  6. Confirm the action.
  7. Now re-add your child’s name under the Family sharing feature.
  8. Hit confirm.

9- Give a quick log-out and log-in to your Apple ID

Although there’s no in-depth explanation for the same, you can always try signing out from your Apple ID and sign in again and see if the issue still persists. The steps are easy and not at all time taking and thus, there’s no harm in giving it a try.

  • For your iOS devices- 
  1. First, go to Settings.
  2. Now tap on the Apple ID option flashing on the top.
  3. Now click on Sign out.
  4. And it’s done.
  • For mac devices-
  1. Here, you need to tap on System Settings.
  2. Now tap on the Apple ID option.
  3. Click on Sign out.

Note- Since you’re signing out from the Apple ID, it is important to have a copy of all your important data.

Now once you have logged off from it, follow the same steps and log in with your credentials such as your number along with your password. 

10- Check the conditions

Please know that there are several conditions under which your Asl to Buy feature will not work at all. So if you’re redeeming a product code through this feature or you’re downloading something from your family purchases, you will not be able to use this feature. 

11- Update the software of your devices

Even though you’re using a version and a device that is compatible with this feature, it is also required to keep updating your devices in order to make the best use of the features available for the users. With every update, there will be a better use and fix of bugs will be given due to which you will be able to use all the features. Following is the process to update your respective devices-

  • For iPhone and iPad- Here, you need to go to Settings of your device and navigate to General. Now tap on the Software update option and see if there’s any latest version available or not. If yes, download the same.
  • For Mac- Note that this method is for macOS 13 Venture and later devices only. Here, go to the System Settings option and tap on General. Now go to Software Update and see if there’s any new update available. If yes, update the same.
  • For macOS 12 Monterey- This method is not only for macOS 12 Monterey but also for the earlier versions. Go to System Preferences and tap on the Software Update option. Here, you will know if there’s any update required or not.

12- Reset your settings

This has been the lender of last resort for many issues including this one. If you’re unable to fix the ask-to-buy issue, you can try performing a factory reset on your device and see if it helps. Following is the step to complete-

  • First, go to Settings.
  • Now tap on General.
  • Go to Transfer or Reset iPhone/iPad.
  • Tap on Reset.
  • Now click on the Reset all settings option available.
  • Now you will have to enter your passcode.
  • Enter it and click on the Reset all settings option again.

Please note that this method will be required in the parent as well as in the child’s device. Ensure that you’re performing a factory reset on both devices. Also, since all your customized settings will be gone, make sure that you make it again after performing these steps.

13- Contact the Apple Support

Last but not least, if everything else is not helping and you’re tired, you will have to take help from Apple customer support and give them a call. You can either reach them out through a call or via their email. The team will get back to you and you will be able to know the cause along with the solution to the issue.

Wrapping up,

These were the quick fixes for your Ask to buy not working issue. All these fixes are not only easy but also safe to follow. We have tried and tested all these methods before curating them for you. Thus, you can surely rely on them. However, if you are still unsure of the solution, it is always a good idea to reach out to the officials as mentioned above. If you think we have missed a point, please let us know in the given comment section. 




1- Is it possible to approve the ask-to-buy request without an Apple device?

Unfortunately, you can not approve your ask-to-buy request without your Apple device. You will need either an iPhone, iPad or a mac device to do the same.

2- Why am I not getting my child’s app requests on my iPhone?

If you’re not getting your child’s app request, then you must check if you have enabled the notifications for the same or not. If not, we have mentioned the method above. You must turn the notification on and check.

3- Is the Ask to buy feature safe?

Yes, the ask-to-buy feature is completely safe and in fact, a recommended one for your children as you will be able to keep track of your child’s purchases through this application and your child will require your permission to complete every purchase. Since this feature will work on family sharing groups, you will have to choose your child’s guardian there to process further. It surely is a safe way. 


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