iPhone or iPad: Can’t Delete Apps, ‘X’ Doesn’t Appear

A common problem that occurs for users of the Apple iPhone or iPad is the inability to delete apps. When you tap and hold the screen, an ‘X’ doesn’t appear in the upper-left corner of the icon as expected.

Resolution 1

I personally experienced this problem with the “Yelp” app. I had two icons on my home screen for Yelp. I deleted on of them, but the other remained. I could not get the “X” to appear on the second icon. A simple restart solved this for me.

  1. Press and hold the Sleep/Wake button until an option to “slide to power off” appears.
  2. Slide the power icon to the right, then wait for your device to power down.
  3. After about 15 seconds, press and hold the Sleep/Wake button to turn the device back on.

I hope the icon is now gone as happened for me.

Resolution 2

Another common reason there is no “X” is a restriction setting. Perhaps this setting was accidentally set and forgotten about.

  1. Open “Settings“.
  2. Select “General“.
  3. Choose “Restrictions“.
  4. Enter the password set for restrictions.
  5. Set the “Deleting Apps” setting to “On” (green) so that it is allowed.

Once you ensure this setting is on, you should be able to remove apps without a problem.

Another reason the X may not appear is that it is an app that is built into Apple iOS. Apps such as Notes, Newsstand and Calendar cannot be removed.


  1. patrice says

    no idea what my restriction code is. How can I find out? I don’t remember setting it up,

  2. Andrew says

    I have done both the aforementioned and can’t delete apps. The X appears in my case, but whe I click on an app everything starts flashing. Any ideas

  3. movcharov says

    New iPhone 6 – shared ID over iTunes and iCloud: Solution 1 – restart – did not help, but Solution 2 was spot on – perfect! The Restriction permission was OFF (is it like that by default?), so I had to slide it to GREEN, and it worked immediately!
    :) Such relief, THANK YOU! :)

  4. Geraldine says

    None worked for me….don’t remember setting a restriction password. It won’t take any of my passwords. Help!!!

  5. gerry campos says

    If neither works you can try on your apple device going to:
    1. Settings
    2. General
    3. Profiles
    4. Delete the Profile with the App Name.
    I tried this solution after installing an app from Safari and adding it to my homescreen. The “x” would not appear when i tried to delete. When i opened the app i would be redirected to safari. Hope this helps.

  6. Stephella says

    I found that the first soukous ion didn’t work so I then tried the 2nd and it worked perfectly fine thanks

  7. Most Thankful says

    I have searched all over to find out why I was unable to delete my apps – this was the first helpful article. Your second option was my issue, thank you for posting!!

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