How to Turn Off Automatic App Updates on iOS, Android, and Windows 8.1

Arizona Senator John McCain Famous Apple CEO asked Tim Cook Why do I have to constantly update my apps on my iPhone and why not fix it?“I look forward to the day when McCain or any other Congress creator will throw flip-flops and ask for instructions on how to turn automatic app updates off again. Tim Cook and Apple have fixed auto-updates for Apps and caught Android. Thus, now users of the three major mobile platforms can automatically update Apps until the cows come home.

Or maybe not. Call me old-fashioned and maybe not maverick, but I’d rather have some control when something changes on my devices. I may not be able to control how the NSA intercepts my outgoing data, but at least I can prevent App updates from coming in when I don’t want them. That’s why I keep automatic updates turned off. I run devices on Windows 8.1, iOS 7 and Android 4.3. I keep automatic app updates turned off for the simple reason that I see updates go bad even when manually downloading an update. This means you have to wait for the developer to release a new update. Admittedly, this may be mostly a first-world issue, but when it happens it’s terribly frustrating.

When the updates showed up, I would semi-religiously hit the Update All button in the App Stores. But after being bitten once or twice, I became a little more cautious about it.

Fortunately, users can turn off automatic updates on all three platforms. Here’s how to turn off automatic app updates on each platform:

iOS 7

Go to Settings on your iOS 7 device. Scroll down to iTunes & App Store and make this selection.

Scroll down to see the Automatic Downloads heading. The last pass should be Updates. Turn it off and you’re done.

IMG_0436When App Updates are available, you’ll see a badge on the App Store icon on your home screen, or you can go to the App Store and manually check for updates.

Android 4.3

Open the Google Play Store App from your App Drawer or wherever you are.

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Select Apps and then navigate to Settings using the capacitive button to the left of the Home Button.

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Once you reach the Settings Window, select Auto-Update Apps.

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In the menu popup that appears, select Do not auto-update apps. You’re done.

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Windows 8.1

In Windows 8.1 using Metro or Modern UI, first open the Windows Store, then swipe from the right to access the Charms Bar.

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Then choose Settings. You will see a selection for App Updates. Choose.

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On the next screen, you will see a toggle switch to turn automatic updates on or off. Flip the key and you’ve turned them off.

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If you have auto-update turned off, you can check for updates in the Windows Store by following the steps above and hitting the Check for updates button.