How to Opt out of Ad Tracking on a Device Running iOS 4 or 5

As ad tracking in mobile apps has become a more popular way of offering mobile users targeted offers, devices have also gotten more sophisticated at blocking those tracking methods. For instance, with iOS 6 and later, Apple has added a dedicated “Advertising” tab under the “Settings” menu, developed specifically so that users can freely opt out of targeted ad tracking.

If you are still using iOS 4 or 5 on your device, however, you will need to use a different method to shut down the ad tracking on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch. The steps below will explain what to do.

Step 1
Start by opening up your Safari app. Later iOS devices let you opt out of ad tracking by editing your menus, but iOS 4 and 5 don't have that feature available. You will therefore have to make use of Apple’s retroactive “opt-out” page online.

Step 2
Type into the address bar on your device. Simply visiting the website should automatically limit the ad tracking on your device. This step will only limit advertisements directly from Apple, but is still worth taking to avoid at least some of the ad tracking on your device.

Later versions of iOS made it easier and more effective to limit ad tracking. If you are using an older device that still runs iOS 4 or 5, the above method will limit your ad tracking but only slightly. If possible, updating to a later version of iOS would give you more control over ad tracking. However, remember that not all older devices can run the newer incarnations of iOS.