Many parents have invested in Apple consumer products in recent years that both they and their children can enjoy – the iPod has replaced the Sony Walkman as the portable music player of choice for many people – and yet some parents may be unaware of the possible challenges these devices can introduce:
- access to unsuitable video or website content
- computer security issues
- in-game or in-app purchasing linked to an iTunes account and/or credit card
Media stories about parents hit by unexpected charges when their children have been playing simple games have lead NetSafe executive director Martin Cocker to offer these tips in the NZ Herald:
- Smartphones and iPads are essentially computers. Treat them like computers.
- Test children’s applications yourself.
- Don’t save your credit-card details to your iTunes account.
- Disable the “in-app purchase” option under the Settings, General, then Restrictions option on your iPad or iPhone.
- Read the terms and conditions.
Setting parental restrictions for iTunes
If you use Apple’s multimedia library on your computer you can learn more on their website about how to use parental controls to block content and disable purchases.
The company also offers information on using restrictions to block iPad2 tablet users from making in-app purchases.
WebSafetyNZ in Christchurch have also produced this handy guide with screenshots to walk you through the iPad process.