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My kids play games on my tablet, and I would like to disable the Android Market and in-app purchasing for the duration of their use of the device.

Is there any option, third-party software or any other way to stop my kids from buying stuff inside their games or installing any software?

I understand that I can remove credit card info from the account, but since that device is used by me most of the time, this is too cumbersome. I also don't want to stop Internet connectivity since some games are Flash games in the browser.

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up vote 6 down vote accepted

In the Market settings you can add a PIN to protect purchases; that should lock them out effectively enough. I don't know of anything offhand to prevent all installs, though. I would assume you'd need to be rooted for an app to intercept and prevent install attempts.

If you are rooted, you could use something like Titanium Backup to back and uninstall the Market, then reinstall it when your kids are done. That might be cumbersome as well though.

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I was unable to find any PIN-related settings in Android Market. Are you sure they are available in the dumbed-down "web-style" Market available in Honeycomb? – haimg Dec 15 '11 at 22:26
@haimg Hrm I thought the tablet and phone Market apps had been merged. Maybe yours didn't auto-update? You could try installing it manually -- I just updated my phone to 3.4.4 via this Android Police post. – Matthew Read Dec 15 '11 at 22:56
Thanks, that new Market with PIN code at least solves the fiscal problem. – haimg Dec 15 '11 at 23:19

The Kids Place app (free) permits you to set up a locked screen with just the apps your kids are permitted to play; just make certain that Market is not one of those apps.

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