Not a toy: children will be blocked by iPhones
By: Joseph Reis – X Tech News
Apple responded to the request of its investors and promised to save children from excessive enthusiasm for their iPhones. Now the company has to develop a system of enhanced parental control so that adults can track how many hours their child spends on their gadgets.
Apple promised to protect children from iphones after the company’s investors urged management to tackle the problem of the dependence of the young generation on their iPhones, reports The Wall Street Journal.
“We always think about how our products are used and what impact they have on our users and the people around them,” the representative of Apple commented on this decision. “We take our responsibility [for this] seriously and try to meet and exceed customer expectations, especially if it concerns the protection of children.”
The Cupertino Company took such measures after an open letter on behalf of JANA Partners LLC and the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS), two of Apple’s key investors. They asked the “apple” brand to develop certain rules and tools that would allow children to use iPhones “in the best way.”
No sleep, no rest
To prove the need for decisive action, Apple investors shared some statistics relating to children and adolescents. According to the study, 67% of teachers noted that the latest technologies divert students from study, and 75% recorded a decrease in the concentration of students and the inability to focus on academic assignments.
Over the past three to five years, gadgets have confidently taken their place in the classroom. Teachers noticed that even those students who used to go out on the street, talk or exercise, now prefer to sit still and play on their smartphones.
According to professor of psychology Jean Twenge from the University of San Diego,
American teenagers who spend more than five hours a day with the phone in their hand are 71% more likely to commit suicide than their peers who use gadgets less than an hour a day.
In addition, high school students who live an active life in mobile social networks increase their risk of depression by 27%, and those who do not release a smartphone from their hands often do not sleep enough, which in future can lead to obesity and increased pressure.
The authors of the open letter also acknowledged that 94% of their parents said they had taken certain measures to restrict the use of technology gadgets by their children. “But parents should not lead this struggle alone – this is unrealistic and inefficient in the long term,” say Apple investors, suggesting the brand to join.
Apple has some parental control, but it boils down to a complete ban or full access to the iPhone, not giving adults a wide choice and a custom set of tools.
Investors suggested creating software that would change the smartphone so that the applications and services available to the child differed from applications and services for, for example, a 40-year-old adult.
Concerns about addiction to gadgets were voiced by former Apple employee, iPhone and iPod designer Tony Fadell. According to him, gadgetomania is a reality, and the Silicon Valley must be combated with it.
In his tweet, he noted that Google, Facebook and Twitter are good at making people make another click for the next dose of dopamine. “Now they must take responsibility and help people control their dependence at all levels – from smartphones, laptops, TVs and other things,” Fadell added.
The former designer of Apple stressed that if the companies are not “going into the fight,” then the government will need help to influence them.
Dad and Mom are watching you
Responding to the investor’s letter, Apple pointed out that the company has introduced “parental” functions into its devices since 2008 – in the “Options” section, you can install or remove the application, monitor purchases inside the games, or deny access to a particular site. In addition, the company ensures that there is no controversial or offensive content in the App Store and other services.
Nevertheless, Apple has promised that it will try to improve its devices and add new features to it so that parental control becomes even more reliable.
The date of updating and its approximate content has not been announced yet. Presumably, parents can remotely monitor how much time their child spends on the smartphone, and disable some features if the daily limit is exceeded.