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Kids are finding ingenious ways around Apple’s screen time controls



child iPhone apple
are finding ingenious ways of gaming Apple’s new screen time

Getty Images/Mario

  • Kids are finding ingenious ways to get around screen
    time controls on their Apple devices, according to reports from
    parents posted online.
  • One seven-year-old tricked the feature by uninstalling
    and reinstalling apps.
  • A 13-year-old changed the date and time on his device
    to circumvent the “downtime” his parent set.

Children are confounding their parents by finding ingenious
away around Apple’s screen time controls.

The British press picked up on an r/apple Reddit discussion,
which features bemused parents sharing stories about how their
kids are gaming the settings on their Apple devices.

Apple introduced “screen time” as
a new feature on iOS 12
, released earlier this month. It
allows users to set restrictions on how much time users spend on
apps, and schedule “downtime” in which they cannot use them.

Parents can use the feature to impose restrictions on their
children’s device usage — or so they thought. One Reddit shared
the story of how their seven-year-old had gamed the feature,
sparking a chat that has nearly 500 comments.

“When iOS 12 came out I limited my 7-year old son’s screen time
through the family share. For a few days I felt like he was
playing a bit more than he should, but I couldn’t figure out
why,” u/PropellerGuy said.

“Finally today, my son revealed his hack: When he runs out of
screen time and his games get locked, he heads to App Store,
downloads a previously installed (but later removed) game through
the cloud icon, and it works without limitations!”

“What can I say,” they added. “I’m not even mad. That’s

Another parent asked Apple’s support forum how to get a step ahead
of their teenage son, who had reset his phone’s time and date to
trick “screen time.”

“I was so excited to turn on the screen time restrictions in the
new iOS. Until my 13 year old found a work around within 2
minutes of handing his phone back to him during ‘down time’ — he
went to settings and changed the date/time of his phone to an
unrestricted time and voila! Free screentime again.”

Simple yet elegant.

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