How To Toddler-Proof Your iPad

I blogged last week about our toddlers using iPads. On the back of that, I have realised just how many people haven’t activated the “restrictions” on their devices. These are Parental Controls, and take literally 5 minutes to set up.

This blog post is designed to talk you through wich settings I have used to “toddler-proof” my iPads, to prevent little fingers making in-app purchases without permission, and a few tricks to stop them deleting my own apps. These settings haven’t let me down (yet)! I can’t be held responsible if your child is a hacker extraordinaire, and beats my system, though!

The first thing you need to do is go into SETTINGS then GENERAL.

Scroll down, and select RESTRICTIONS. (It’s 3/4 of the way down the settings).

You want to select ENABLE RESTRICTIONS.
It will prompt you to choose a 4 digit pin number here. Make sure you’ll remember it, but don’t let the kids have it!

The next menu you see is all of the different restrictions you can set up. The following screen shot is how I have got our iPads set up.

Here’s a quick explanation behind some of my settings choices…

I allow access to Safari because the kids enjoy playing on the Cbeebies website. Once they are old enough to google and browse the internet by themselves, I may decide to block access to this as well.

I allow access to the camera so I can laugh at the dodgy selfies the children take. It also means I can grab the iPad to take a quick snapshot if my phone isn’t to hand.

I have facetime access blocked purely so the kids aren’t driving anyone crazy with it. I might activate it with a very moderated contacts list when they are old enough to understand facetiming Daddy 80 times a day is not cool…!!

I allow access to iTunes and the App store because I am confident they’ll never crack my password. It means I can make purchases for them quickly, whenever I want to.

Deleting Apps is disabled so they can’t accidentally (or otherwise) delete anything.

Siri and Airdrop are deactivated because the kids have no use for them.

I have activated all of the restrictions in the “allowed content” section to keep the kids as protected as possible. Even if they did somehow crack my iTunes or App Store password, they wouldn’t be allowed to download or listen to explicit content. DOUBLE PROTECTION!

In the privacy section, anything with a padlock next to is is locked, so the kids can’t edit or delete anything. These options are great for shared devices – No danger of them deleting an email, appointment or a contact. The same applies for the locked items in the “allow changes” section too.

If you want to edit or delete something from the device yourself, you have to go into Settings > General > Restrictions and then after you’ve entered your 4 digit pin number, you deactivate the necessary settings, edit whatever you were editing and then reactivate the settings again.

These settings are great way to prevent your child spending a fortune on in app purchases. They are also great for preventing them downloading apps with an adult rating.

If all of the above is too much like hard work. you can always just activate Guided Access. (This prevents your child exiting the app you have put on for them). To use this for the first time, you need to go into SETTINGS > GENERAL ACCESSIBILITY GUIDED ACCESS. Select ACTIVATE and then choose a 4 digit pin number (Don’t share this with the kids). Activate the ACCESSIBILITY SHORTCUT option.

Once you’ve done that, any time you want to “lock” your child into an app, you just tap your HOME key three times, quickly. The guided access menu will then pop up. Circle any areas of the screen you want to stop them tapping on (In app purchase options or app store buttons are always worth blocking). Once you’re happy, you hit START and your child can play on the app. When you want to switch off Guided Access, you tap the home button Three Times, and enter the pin number.

I hope at least some of that made sense to you. If not… Here are the links to the Apple Help pages for their take on restrictions and guided access…!

This is not a sponsored post. I just wanted to share these steps to help others protect their children and their pennies!

I just want to add that we use our iPads as educational aids – not glorified TV’s. The kids can’t access TV shows or Youtube, and they only have educational apps on them.

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