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. kev says

    I did it all
    but still can’t delete
    i don’t see the X to remove in iTunes and i can’t delete any other way

  2. Penguins says

    1 didn’t work for me, however I can’t remember my Restrictions password, so I am really screwed

  3. Kathy McConnell says

    Excellent advice – very brief but it covered the bases in a very clear manner.
    It is refreshing to see such good communication skills! Thank you –

  4. jim says


  5. Melinda says

    you are a life saver!!!
    I guess I set the restrictions on my device so I had to have done it because my old password was there too.

    I don’t remember doing this and I have gone 2 days trying to figure it out!

  6. Deb says

    Thanks so much! The 2nd resolution worked for me as well.. I was going crazy trying to figure out what had changed and why I wasn’t able to delete anything.

  7. says

    The “Stocks” app is part of the ROM and can’t be removed. For apps like that, I make a folder labeled “Junk” and put them all in there.

  8. Anna says

    I have a stocks app on the iphone that was passed on to me by a relative . I have tried to delete using the shut down method to no avail. Delete apps is on, I do not get a cross in the corner. Any more suggestions any body?

  9. r d says

    Thanks! Resolution 2 work for me as well, and Apple Couldn’t even figure that out for me. Thanks again

  10. Nickey Rogers says

    This helped a bunch you have no idea!!! I was almost going insane because I couldn’t delete all these apps and I just googled the question and your site came up. I’ve never herd of you before but now that I have I will definitely be telling everyone. Thanks again!!

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