Use Apple's Screen Time Feature | IPhone Journal

Use Apple’s Screen Time Feature

Screen Time’s settings and controls may offer you some assurance– and they’re currently on your gadget.

If you have an Apple gadget, you likely already understand something about Screen Time, a function within iOS 12 (and readily available throughout Apple computer systems with the release of MacOS Catalina). However, if you’ve had an interest in using parental controls to assist handle your kids’ Apple gadgets, and wonder if Screen Time will suffice, it’s crucial to know the information to make certain it’s the very best fit for your household. As with any adult controls, they’re best used in addition to assistance and continuous discussions to help your kids discover to handle their own media use. It’s likewise worth noting that kids have discovered ways to navigate some of the settings (as they make with most parental controls), so it’s not an airtight solution.

Screen Time lets you see precisely just how much time your kids invest on their phones and tablets, the times of day they’re most active, and which apps they use one of the most. You can likewise set app time frame, filter inappropriate material, and schedule “downtime” — generally, closed down the gadget– whenever you desire. (By the way, you can do this for yourself if you need help managing your own device use.).

Some of the settings will recognize if you’ve used Apple’s Family Sharing and Restrictions. However iOS 12 has more features. You can establish Screen Time to handle your kid’s gadget remotely (using Family Sharing) or you can just utilize your kid’s phone to allow screen limitations (which you can password-protect) and evaluate your kid’s device usage together.

So what will you see and what can you manage?

Usage Tracking.

Screen Time provides you a weekly report revealing how long your kids have utilized their gadget that week and at what times of day (kids can see this on their gadget, too). You can likewise see what classifications of apps (Productivity, Entertainment, etc.) and particular apps (Snapchat, Fortnite) they use the most.

How you can utilize it. Considering that you can see your own usage details, too, it’s a great discussion starter around balance and goals– for the entire family. Have a look at which apps you’re using most and when, and discuss the why’s (why you utilize it the most) and how’s (how you feel after utilizing it). Determine if your device is pumping you up or bumming you out. Could you adhere to watching just 15 minutes of YouTube each day? Would that assist you get your research done quicker or meet other personal goals?

App Limits.

If your kids are using apps that you’re concerned about (like, they can’t manage themselves) you can use App Limits to cut them off after a specific amount of time or on certain days. You can set App Limits by classification, such as Social Networking or Entertainment, and for specific apps. You can even personalize the amount of time for specific apps on specific days. If you want to restrict whatever, you can go into App Limits and select All Apps & Categories. Once kids hit their time limitation, they can send out an ask for more time; you can either approve it or not.

How you can use it. Eventually, you want to get kids to handle their own usage by themselves, without any tools. If you can get them to set a goal, such as “I desire to stay with 30 minutes of Fortnite a day,” they’ll feel great when they reach it. If you require a quicker solution, it’s still an excellent idea to get kids’ buy-in. Discuss their goals– setting them on your own may assist, too– and praise their efforts. If you’re still having difficulty, take out your Family Media Agreement to make your rules concrete. Make certain to discuss the Request More Time function, where kids can ask to extend the limitation (through their device). Prevent using this feature as a benefit for tasks or homework: It’s bound to result in begging and take you away from the end goal of balance.


This feature lets you obstruct off a chunk of time when kids can’t utilize their phones– like from right around bedtime until they wake up. If your kid says, “But I listen to music to help me go to sleep!” No problem: You can set the Music app to Always Allowed, and your kid can access that app throughout Downtime.

How you can utilize it. Downtime is handy to have for critical times, such as bedtime, mealtimes, and when your kid remains in a particularly cool mood and simply requires, well, downtime. Since late-night gadget use can really hinder kids getting adequate sleep, think about setting Downtime about an hour prior to bed up until morning. This helps them wind down before they go to sleep and also releases up a long time to speak about the day and do peaceful, calm activities such as reading. To get buy-in, talk it through first, and set it up on your own phone so that it’s a bonding experience rather than a top-down order.

Always Allowed.

This is where you can pick apps that your kid can always gain access to, even during Downtime. The phone is always enabled no matter what your settings are, but you can turn off core apps like Messages, FaceTime, and Maps so that they will not come on either.

How you can use it. You might choose to enable access to specific apps that you do not mind your kid using at any time for any factor. These might be instructional, soothing, or otherwise useful, such as bedtime music, podcasts, the Books apps, or meditation apps. Be picky here, though. Otherwise, what’s the point of Downtime?

Content & Privacy Restrictions.

This section is essentially the old Restrictions section, and you can control whatever you might previously: music, TELEVISION programs, apps, movies, web content, multiplayer video games, and more. The iOS default is Allow All, Unrestricted, and Explicit (for music), so if material is an issue, you’ll desire to alter those settings. In this section, you can also shut off in-app purchases and area services and avoid your kids from altering your settings by locking them with a passcode.

How you can utilize it. Handing your kid an iPad or iPhone provides access to all type of stuff, even if you do not download a single app. You can utilize the Content & Privacy Restrictions location of Screen Time to manage the settings that suggest the most to you and avoid your kid from making modifications. Some of the settings you can make in this area, such as location tracking, are for your kid’s safety. Talk about why these settings are nonnegotiable. Also, you may consider permitting your kids to “earn” the features they desire, such as the capability to make in-app purchases, after they reveal that they can be extremely responsible with their gadget.