Struggles with Apple Screen Time: A Parent’s Perspective

Estimated read time 2 min read

As a long-time fan of Apple products, I’ve appreciated their consistency and reliability over the years. However, my recent experience with Apple Screen Time, their parental control solution, has left me deeply frustrated.

With the increasing role of technology in our lives, especially for my children, we sought ways to manage their device usage responsibly. After relying on third-party software for a while, we welcomed Apple’s decision to integrate parental controls into the operating system through Screen Time.

On the surface, Screen Time seemed like the perfect solution, offering a comprehensive set of features to manage and protect our children’s online activity. From limiting app usage to restricting access to inappropriate content, it appeared to tick all the boxes.

Unfortunately, the reality has been far from ideal. Screen Time’s performance has been incredibly inconsistent, causing frustration not just in my household but among many other parents as well. Despite setting the same controls for my 15 and 16-year-olds, the results have varied significantly. While my son’s experience aligns with my expectations, my daughter’s encounters frequent glitches and failures. With my son, I usually know it’s working by the immediate complaints I hear about “why am I locked down?”. For my daughter, I’ve learned the hard way that it’s the quiet that I should be worried about because I suspect it’s her working to bypass the latest controls. (The hacks are all over the place on the internet – from powering off devices to setting time/date back to bypass the schedule, you name it)

This inconsistency undermines the very purpose of Screen Time and makes it difficult for parents to trust and rely on it as a tool for managing their children’s device usage effectively. If you’re interested in exploring Screen Time further, I encourage you to visit the Apple website. Additionally, I’ve included a link to online discussions where other parents share similar frustrations.

It’s my hope that Apple addresses these issues promptly to restore the confidence of parents like myself who are striving to strike a balance between technology and family life. Or if they are not willing to put the level of quality behind this product that many of us Apple fans expect, then eliminate Screen Time and let the 3rd parties back in to do it the right way.

Photo by David Pupăză on Unsplash

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