Set up Parental Controls for the iPhone or IPad | Restrict Content – Part 11

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This is one in a series of blog posts I have put together describing how to setup parental controls for an iPhone, iPad, or iTouch.  If  you find this material helpful, you may want to download the Kindle version of my Book.  It contains even more information to guide you through the steps to ensure your child’s iPhone is secure.

Allowed Content:  Restrict Access to Specific Content Types

The second section we’ll review in the Restrictions area is “Allowed Content.”  You can use these settings to restrict which music, movies, and TV programs are allowed on your phone.

The iTunes store contains a treasure trove of great music, videos, and games for your children; however, it is also a haven for adult content as well!  Given that there are explicit materials and R-rated movies within the store, you should consider restricting access to some or all of this material.

Beware that these settings don’t apply to content viewed through a browser, YouTube, or through an app you may have installed on your phone; however, since a majority of content, such as music and apps come from the iTunes store, these restrictions are effective:

*Ratings For – Select the country’s rating system you wish to use.  For instance, to change the country to United Kingdom:

  1. tap Ratings For
  2. Use your finger to slide down the screen to locate and tap United Kingdom.
  3. When done, tap the Restrictions button in the upper left of the screen.

*Music and podcasts – You can restrict music and podcasts containing explicit language.  To change this setting:

  1. Tap on Music & Podcasts
  2. Then tap ON button to change the setting to either ON or OFF.
  3. Once done, tap the Restrictions button in the upper left of the screen

*Movies – Restrict which movies are available for use, such as R and PG-13 rated movies. To change this setting:

  1. Tap on Movies
  2. From the Allow Movies Rated, section, tap the ratings your child is allowed to view.  For example, for a small child in the United States you may want to tap to uncheck all ratings except G.
  1. As you tap, restricted groups change color to red.  Also, as you tap to restrict, the current age group and those older are automatically unchecked.  So in our example, by taping on G, we restrict all ages above G; no extra tapping is required.
  2. Once done, tap the Restrictions button in the upper left of the screen.

 

*TV shows – Restrict which TV shows, by rating, your child is able to view, such as TV-14 and TV-MA. Changing the restrictions for TV shows is similar to movies:

  1. Tap on TV Shows
  2. From the Allow TV Shows Rated, section, tap the youngest ratings your child is allowed to view.  For a small child in the United States you’ll want to tap to uncheck all ratings except TV-Y.
  1. As you tap, restricted groups change color to red.  Also, as you tap to restrict, the current age group and those older are automatically unchecked.  So in our example, by taping on TV-Y, we restrict all ages above TV-Y; no extra tapping is required.
  2. Once done, tap the Restrictions button in the upper left of the screen.

*Books – Restrict young readers from explicit sexual content.  To prevent your child from sampling, downloading, and reading books with explicit sexual content:

  1. Tap on Books
  2. Then tap ON button to change the setting to either OFF, vice versa.
  3. Once done, tap the Restrictions button in the upper left of the screen

*Apps – Apps are naughty and nice, too.  You may wish to restrict 12+ and 17+ apps on your phone.

Changing the restrictions for Apps is similar to movies and TV shows:

  1. Tap on Apps
  2. From the Allow Apps Rated, section, tap the oldest rating your child is allowed to view.  For a small child in the United States you’ll want to tap to uncheck all ratings except 4+.
  1. As you tap, restricted groups change color to red.  Also, as you tap to restrict, the current age group and those older are automatically unchecked.  So in our example, by taping on 4+, we restrict all ages above 4+; no extra tapping is required.
  2. Once done, tap the Restrictions button in the upper left of the screen.

*In-app purchases – Restrict your child from making an in-app purchase.  It is overwhelmingly tempting to spend $.99 for the next Angry Birds level; while this does not sound costly at first, one must consider how many levels exist, just waiting to be purchased.

To change this setting, tap the ON button.  You can toggle the setting to ON or OFF by repeatedly tapping it.

*Require Password – We recommend you change this setting from 15 Minutes to Immediately.  This means that a password will be required for every single individual purchase of apps or songs (if allowed).

To change this:

  1. Tap on Require Password
  2. Then tap on immediately.
  3. Once done, tap the Restrictions button in the upper left of the screen

Note:  you should also set up a password requirement for purchasing music or an app from the iTunes store.

Privacy: Privacy Settings

Loophole!  When you turn restrictions on, you’ll see a section for Privacy settings.  This isn’t the only place you can change these settings as they can also be directly access from the main Settings screen.  Don’t assume just because restrictions are set on, that the privacy settings are locked.

Allow Changes:

Some final items to consider are whether your child should be able to set up or change his email accounts, or to participate in multi-play games.  Also, you can set the volume limit for headphones, which can help prevent damage to your child’s hearing.

You can choose to prevent changes to the following:

*Accounts – If you choose to allow your child to have an email account, set this to Don’t Allow Changes to stop your child from being able to set up additional accounts.  This way you can keep tabs on his or her email.  You’ll know the password, and you will be able to access the account via the web (e.g. by using a Gmail account).

To change this:

  1. Tap on Accounts
  2. Then tap on Don’t Allow Changes.
  3. Once done, tap the Restrictions button in the upper left of the screen

*Volume limit – Set the volume to a reasonable level and lock it to avoid damaging your child’s hearing.

To change this:

  1. Tap on Volume Limit
  2. Then tap on Don’t Allow Changes.

Once done, tap the Restrictions button in the upper left of the screen

Game Center:

You can choose to restrict features within Game Center:

Multiplayer games – If you’re nervous about your child interacting with others over the Internet, then you should turn this OFF.  Note that you can add some friends, such as your child’s cousins, and then lock it down.

Tap the ON button to turn the feature OFF.

Adding friends – Once you have added friends, such as your brother, sisters, or cousins, you can set this restriction so that your child can’t add strangers as friends.

Tap the ON button to turn the feature OFF.

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If  you find this material helpful, you may want to download the Kindle version of my Book.  It contains even more information to guide you through the steps to ensure your child’s iPhone is secure.

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