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How To Child-Proof Your iPhone

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Dave Caolo at 52 Tiger shares a series of interesting tips to “child-proof” an iPhone (though most of these features are enabled on the iPad as well) to make sure kids using a device won’t get access to functionalities like deleting apps and pulling the trigger on in-app purchases. Something I never had the chance to play with is the restriction settings panel for location and email:

Next, exercise (limited) control over location services and email accounts. First, tap Location to see the locations options screen. You can disable/enable location services on an app-by-app basis or turn it off entirely. Once you’ve set this up how you’d like it to be, select Don’t Allow Changes. Likewise, tapping email accounts and then Don’t Allow Changes won’t let you modify existing email, contacts or calendar information or create new ones. Of course, Jr. can still read your mail (and reply to it), so this isn’t entirely useful.

You can read more at 52 Tiger by hitting the source link below, and enable restrictions under Settings->General on your iOS device. Apple has been criticized in the past for not offering the right tools to parents to prevent children from spending money in iTunes, though with iOS 4.3 they introduced a broader set of restrictions and brought the in-app purchase window (when a device asks for your Apple ID password) from 15 minutes down to 5 minutes.

Read more | 52tiger.net

Passcode

The first and most obvious line of defense is a passcode. A passcode prevents a user, like Jr., from getting past the lock screen. There are two types of passcodes: simple and complex. Here’s the difference and how to set them up.

A simple passcode consists of four numbers. It’s easy to remember but also easy to guess. A complex passcode is much longer and contains alphanumeric characters. Obviously it’s less easy to remember but also significantly harder for Jr. to guess. Follow these steps to create either type:

  1. Tap the Settings app, then tap General.
  2. Tap Passcode Lock.
  3. You’ll be prompted to enter a passcode. Enter it twice to produce the passcode options screen.

At this point you can replace the simple passcode you just created with a complex one by moving the Simple Passcode slider to the Off position. Other options let  you determine how long the iPhone must be in sleep mode before requiring a passcode (from immediately to four hours) and voice dialing. You don’t want Jr. burning through your minutes, after all. Finally, you can opt for the iPhone to erase all of its data after 10 failed passcode attempts.

Of course, I hand my iPhone over after it’s already been unlocked. If you do the same, a passcode isn’t very useful. Let’s check out Restrictions.

Restrictions

Here’s how you can disable apps, purchases, email access, ratings and more. If you want to prevent Jr. from launching Safari, deleting apps, listening to age-restricted music or noting the iPhone’s location, you can with Restrictions. Here’s how.

Open the Settings app. Next tap General and then tap Restrictions. You’ll be prompted to enter a restrictions passcode. Note that this is not the same as your iPhone’s general passcode. Next you’ll find four sections:

  1. Apps to allow or disable
  2. Location/email account options
  3. Content options
  4. Game Center
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