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>Instead, the rationale from Apple and defended by you and others is that it is better to make the entire app 17+

Yes, then parents can give the device to children, turn on whatever restrictions based on those ratings, and have it work, even if the kid is trying to get around it by doing all those things.

This is not only intended to defeat 5 year olds, but 14 year olds.

If 500px would prefer to turn that switch off for everyone, then 4+ is possibly the correct rating. If they do not, then the correct rating is 17+.

The only people it prohibits from getting the app, by setting to 17+ are those whom have another person setting 17+ as inappropriate for that user.

You do know the web browser and pretty much any apps can be turned off in restrictions right? You can give the thing to a 4 year old, and the only thing you have to worry about is "will they break it" once you've locked it down correctly.

500px mislabeled their app, and as a result were allowing industrious young people who were otherwise restricted to find stuff like http://500px.com/photo/10228807 (Which I don't view as harmful PERSONALLY, but LOTS of people would find that inappropriate for a kid).

What's the rating on the iOS web browser? 17+? Presumably your hypothetical 4 and 14 year olds would have access to that too?

Although I notice that several web browsers in iTunes have 17+ ratings too, so at least they're consistent, maybe. According to https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/mercury-browser-fast-web-bro...

  You must be at least 17 years old to download this app.
    Frequent/Intense Sexual Content or Nudity
    Frequent/Intense Profanity or Crude Humor
    Frequent/Intense Mature/Suggestive Themes
    Frequent/Intense Cartoon or Fantasy Violence
    Frequent/Intense Horror/Fear Themes
    Frequent/Intense Realistic Violence
    Frequent/Intense Alcohol, Tobacco, or Drug Use or References
update: did you actually look at the picture that you linked? I doubt a 14 year old is going to be harmed by it...

Any app that allows general web access must be given a 17+ rating. This includes any browser, as well as any app that happens to include an integrated browser for another purpose (e.g. a Twitter client that shows links in-app).

As for children having access to the built-in web browser, certainly not if their parents don't think full web access is appropriate for them.

I did look at the picture, and intentionally picked it for humor and inclusion in my permanent HN comment history. I don't think any 4+ year old would be harmed at it, but I also think the parents of many 4+ year olds wouldn't want them bandying it about, especially in very religious communities.

The iOS web browser has it's own on/off switch in restrictions.

> You do know the web browser and pretty much any apps can be turned off in restrictions right?

Please enlighten me as to how to restrict apps other than Safari, Camera, FaceTime, and iTunes, because that's all there is in that menu.

You restrict based on age ratings. That's the whole point of his argument.

You set the rating restriction, block the communication apps, Safari, and the kid cannot go download another browser and surf. If Apple goes lax on these ratings, then those parental controls stop working.

I just set my age restrictions to "4+", and was still able to open Chrome, Twitter, Flipboard, etc.

What I want is to be able to lock down certain apps so I can hand my device to my 4-year-old and know that he's not going to get into anything except the few games I have for him. Is that not possible?

My understanding it's the app store download and install that gets blocked, not the actual running of apps. That's when you see the age-restricted warning, not when you run the app.

An imperfect system for your use case, for sure. An example where multi-user iPad would be great.

The whole iOS ecosystem is design with one user per device in mind. Apple ID, single user, etc.

I get that, and it's a source of much frustration. The idea of buying an iPhone for your four-year old strikes me as lunacy. These things are marvelous at keeping kids entertained and quiet when you're waiting at a restaurant or checking out at the grocery store, and expecting that there will only be one user of the device ever is annoyingly myopic. It also occurs to me that if you're going to gate it at install time, the iTunes password already does that. Don't give the kid the password, she can't install anything that isn't approved.

There's a tremendous disconnect between how it should work and how it does work. If I want to put my device in "four-year-old mode", I shouldn't have to uninstall everything to get there.

Agreed. My guess is that we'll get somewhere closer to what you're looking at eventually. True focus of the company is very much in the personal device area, though.

However, they have started some work mainly focused on accessibility that might be good for this use. iPad only at the moment: http://www.gottabemobile.com/2012/10/01/how-to-lock-the-ipad...

My above comment might get you there.

That said: I dislike the single user nature of the devices as well. I understand WHY they do it, but dislike it personally.

Also: iPodTouch costs about $200, which is the same as a handheld gaming handset from the likes of nintendo, etc, especially when looking at the different costs of games.

The password is not good enough, because multiple iTunes accounts can be on one device, and the kid could add a gift card to buy whatever.

The multiple accounts thing is a good point. I hadn't considered that, but it makes the "single user device" seem even sillier - why can I attach multiple accounts to a device that is otherwise completely inappropriate for multiple people to use at the same time?

I'm aware that the Touch is less expensive, but my argument is that "Just buy a separate device for your 4-year-old" is an insane line of reasoning, whether it's a $200 iPod or a $600 iPhone.

When doing MDM (which is the vast majority of my experience with this), they disappear after a couple minutes or a restart. Did some apps disappear?

They reappear after you up the rating again (and annoying lose folder position, which is why I didn't just turn it back on).

If Restrictions are less powerful than MDM, then you can STILL delete the apps on a child's device.

Chrome persisted through a full reboot of the device, despite App Restrictions being set to 4+. I was able to see it and open it after a full reboot. I'm testing on an iPod Touch running iOS 6.0.

I see Chrome appear and disappear for me (fresh install of chrome). I wonder what's up there.

Okay, I looked into it:

Chrome disappears and reappears when I toggle down to 12+

Twitter is (mis)labeled at 4+

I don't have flipboard on my iPhone.

It did take a second for them to disappear. I'm pretty sure a turning off and on will make them disappear. They reappear instantly.

You don't seriously believe that any age restrictions are able to prevent a 14 year from seeing whatever porn he/she wants? Or whatever else.

Sure, they might make the process a bit annoying, but in the end it's always possible to simply jailbreak the device. (not to mention that most 14 year olds know more about technology than their parents)

It will prevent a lot of 14 year olds, not all of them for sure.

Either way, Apples goal is to make the stock software prevent it.

Also: iOS6.0 JUST got a JB. 6.1 is about to drop

I am a realist: I think parents will often care. Many others won't.

Thanks for some common sense. Couldn't this be easily solved by releasing two apps with different age ratings? The 17 rated app could additionally require a login to their verification system if they want to have a complete database of such users. I don't see the problem.

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