How to Add a Password to an iPhone or Android App
Every day, we use our phones to access private and personal information. Emails, credit card details, bank statements, Venmo transactions, the list goes on. It can be frustrating not having an easy way to lock down certain apps with a password for those who are a little more security-conscious than others. But worry no more.
This article will show you how to add a password to any app on your phone or Apple watch and protect your personal information and data.
How to Add a Password to an App on an iPhone or iPad
iPhones have always been designed with the user in mind. They come with a suite of built-in apps like the calendar, camera, clock, and FaceTime. The App Store also gives you instant access to thousands of apps that can help you do just about anything.
Some of these apps may contain sensitive information you don’t want to share with other people that have access to your advice. That’s why Apple has ensured you can lock specific apps with a password.
Here’s how to go about it.
How to Add a Password to an App on an iPhone or iPad using Guided Access
Guided Access is an iOS feature that allows you to disable all apps on your device except one. When this feature is enabled, only one app of your choosing can be accessed. It can prove especially helpful when you’re letting a friend or child borrow your iPhone for a while.
Here’s how to activate Guided Access on your iPhone:
- Open the Settings app and tap on Accessibility.
- Select Guided Access.
- Tap on Passcode Settings.
- Select Set Guided Access Passcode.
- Enter the passcode you’d like to use. Ideally, you should choose a different one from the “master” password used to unlock your device.
- Reenter the passcode.
- Head over to the app you want to keep unlocked.
- Triple-tap the home button on iPhone 8 or higher. For iPhone X or earlier, triple-tap the side button.
- Select Guided Access and tap on Start.
Once activated, Guided Access will only allow the use of a single unlocked app on your iPhone. All of the other apps on your device will be unavailable.
To end Guided Access, simply triple tap on the home button or side button, select Guided Access, and tap End.
How to Add a Password to an App on an iPhone or iPad using Screen Time
Guided Access is considered too restrictive by some iPhone users because only one app can be opened. Perhaps all you want is to keep your child away from a particular game or social media account. Or maybe you want to let someone borrow your iPhone and use multiple apps while still restricting access to some parts of your device.
If this is what you have in mind, Screen Time can save the day. But what is it?
Screen Time (available on iOS 12 or later) is an integrated feature that allows you to track the amount of time you spend in individual apps. You can also limit the amount of time each app is used per day and even lock some apps for some time.
Here’s how to lock an app using Screen Time:
- Open the Settings app and tap on Screen Time.
- Navigate to App Limits and select Add Limit. At this point, you should see a list of all of the apps on your iPhone.
- Tap on the checkbox button next to each app you want to lock and then tap Next.
- Set a time limit for the apps to be locked. You can restrict access for hours, days, or even just a few minutes.
Screen Time’s only downside is that it doesn’t restrict access to apps permanently. Thus, you might want to set a higher time limit if you don’t want your apps unlocked when your device is still in someone else’s hands.
How to Add a Password to an Apple Watch
Apple Watches are handy devices that can enhance your life in many ways, but there are some security risks if you don’t take steps to protect them.
The first thing you should do with any new watch is set up an alphanumeric passcode. That will prevent anyone without the code from accessing certain features, including using Apple Pay to make contactless transactions or unlocking your Mac automatically when near it.
- Open the Settings app and scroll down and tap on Passcode.
- Tap Turn Passcode On.
- Enter the passcode you’d like to use on your watch.
How to Add a Password to an App on an Android
Many people these days find themselves in a situation where they are lending their Android phones to someone else, either intentionally or not. When this happens, you may want to make sure that certain apps on your phone are locked down with a password for privacy and security purposes.
There are two ways to lock individual apps on Android. Let’s go through how each works:
Screen pinning refers to the ability to pin (or lock) your android device’s screen to run one app, with restrictions on access to all other apps. If there’s an attempt to leave the app, the user will be prompted to enter a password.
Screen pinning is the equivalent of the Guided Access feature on iOS devices.
Here’s how to activate this feature on your Android device:
- Open Settings and tap on Security.
- Tap on Advanced and then select Screen Pinning or Pin windows.
- Toggle the button into the ON position.
- Toggle the Lock device when unpinning or Ask for PIN before unpinning button. That means your device will ask for a passcode before unpinning the app.
- Tap the Overview button.
- Tap on the app you’d like to pin and then tap on pin.
When you unpin a pinned screen, it returns to its previous state – running all the apps that were open before you pinned it. You can use this feature whenever you hand over your phone or tablet to someone else temporarily.
Although Screen Pinning can be a useful tool when you want to restrict access to certain apps on your Android, you cannot open any other app except the pinned one.
If you want your child or friend to have a bit more freedom while using your device, you should consider installing a third-party tool that’s specifically designed to put a password on individual apps.
Protect Your Data
Whether or not to add a password to your phone is a question that many people struggle with. You want the protection, but you also need easy access for yourself and others who may need it. In this situation, the best thing is to lock specific apps with a password.
Have you tried to add a password to an app on your mobile device or Apple watch? How did it go? Let us know in the comments section below.