More and more, companies are finally starting to realize that parents want a way to let their children safely use digital devices.
Apple and Google have been providing app ratings similar to the ESRB ratings for video games for years now but what do those ratings mean?
In this episode of The Wired Homeschool I take a look at the Apple app rating system and give a brief overview of Google's new parental control feature: Family Link.
Apple Rating Chart
Apps in this category contain no
Apps in this category may contain instances of the following content that may not be suitable for children under the age of 9:
Infrequent or mild occurrences of realistic violence
Infrequent or mild profanity
Infrequent or mild mature, suggestive, or horror-themed content
Frequent or intense cartoon or fantasy violence
Apps in this category may contain instances of the following content that may not be suitable for children under the age of 12:
Infrequent or mild medical or treatment-focused content
Infrequent or mild references to alcohol, tobacco, or drug use
Infrequent or mild sexual content or nudity
Frequent or intense profanity
Frequent or intense realistic violence
Frequent or intense horror-themed content
Apps in this category may contain instances of the following content that may not be suitable for children under the age of 17:
Unrestricted web access, such as with an embedded browser
Gambling or contests
Frequent or intense mature or suggestive content
Frequent or intense medical or treatment-focused content
Frequent or intense references to alcohol, tobacco, or drug use
Frequent or intense sexual content or nudity
Apple classifies apps that are rated 9+ or lower as kid-friendly. Keep in mind, that these apps can contain profanity, occurrences of realistic violence, and mature, suggestive, or horror-themed content. The condition is that content is either infrequent or mild not infrequent and mild.
App developers classify their apps themselves when they submit it to the app store. Developers that are trying to get the most exposure and might be a little unscrupulous could fail to include content that would get their app banned in other countries. Apple has removed apps in the past because the developer didn't correctly classify an app.
Further information about the app submission process can be found in the iTunes Connect Developer Guide.
Google Family Link
Google has finally realized that kids use their devices. Now they want to help parents by providing parental controls (finally). Family Link gives parents the ability to set screen time limits, see reports on how much their kids are using apps,
and manage the apps your kids use.
Mashable has a great article that goes into setting up and configuring Family Link, I'll be doing a deep-dive into the service in the next few weeks.
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