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Locking apps on iPad

234557 Views 173 Replies Latest reply: Apr 8, 2014 5:23 PM by Lyssa RSS Branched to a new discussion.
  • Henry939 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 7, 2011 6:24 AM (in response to Martin_UK)

    I would just like to say that my son is on the autism spectrum and he is 3 years old.

    And I bought the iPad primarily for him. The apps that are available on iTunes for individuals with special needs are invaluable.

    Not only does the iPad provide an outlet for children / adults to communicate with others it also can help with all kinds of issues. There are apps to help with eye contact, speech articulation, and most importantly for us communication.

    I am looking for an app or way to 'lock' certain apps so he doesn't accidentally tap them too.

    So, before making statements one should consider that there are factors that would want someone to a)purchase and iPad specifically for their child b)realize that teaching a child with special needs is not easy and c) iPads are not babysitters but invaluable teaching tools and communication devices with those with special needs.

    See articles,

    iPod Therefore I Can: Enhancing the Learning of Children with Intellectual Disabilities Through Emerging Technologies

    We are full aware that he could break it, so we are careful, but we have had ours 2 months and if it broke today it would be worth it and we would buy another one for him.

    So, hopefully I haven't offended... you just never know what a person's reasons for doing something is until you have stood in their shoes.
  • James Ward4 Level 7 Level 7 (23,125 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 7, 2011 7:08 AM (in response to Henry939)
    A two pronged issue, at least in my opnion, adn any response is likely to raise some hackles, but being the curmugeon that I am, I'll give a go:

    While I'm not sure this is the correct platform for such, the point that there is an inherant risk in letting a small child use any device with access to the internet unsupervised is noted. I have to agree. The caveat being unsupervised. I also agree that the iPad has tremendous potential for education and theraputic uses.

    But it doesn't allow multiple login accounts (as do most laptops and desktop comupters) and consequently its impossible to prevent a particular app from being used while others are accessible. Immeadiate solution: move the "restricted" apps to a page or folder that is not as prominent and use passcodes to lock the device down; or buy a second iPad (yes, I know, not practical). Longer term: submit a suggestion to Apple for this here: Personally I think it would be a worthwhile feature (but not a substitute for supervision).
    MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.6.6), iPad, iPod, Airport Express
  • Philly_Phan Level 6 Level 6 (11,010 points)
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    Mar 7, 2011 7:38 AM (in response to Lyssa)

    Message was edited by: Philly_Phan
  • amandafromlos molinos Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Jun 4, 2011 10:45 PM (in response to tdubbs26)

    one i am very dissapointed with this post well not the original post but the negativity everyone gave u i looked up this topic on google got led here to read people chastising someone for letting a 3 year old play with an ipad. most 3 year olds would love to play with an ipad u let them play with it once then they will find it no matter where u put it it is a great educational toy for any child. and u shouldnt treat her like poo cause heaven forbid an ipad may get broken while her child is having a good time i mean really whats worth more a childs laugh and smile or an ipad seriously anyone who thinks the money is more important doesnt have kids. i was looking up this topic to find out how to lock certain apps so that my autistic 3 year old could play and learn on the ipad without getting misdirected by utube or other unnesecary apps. He will be four in march and has never spoken a word in his life and since using the autism apps on the ipad is now speaking in sentences in less than 3 months it is amazing he has had counseling for past 2 years with no improvment and is now blossoming so ipads can be amazing learning tools for autistic children and even more so for on the track children in my opinion every child should have one and people shouldnt be treated like they are endangering an animal by letting there child play with an ipad i promise apple will continue to make them as long as we want them they wont become extinct till something new comes out which will be better children need and really understand this technology better than we do and are worth alot more than money

  • Demo Level 9 Level 9 (73,710 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 5, 2011 4:49 AM (in response to amandafromlos molinos)

    Normally threads like this one that are over three months old do not get much response. The way the discussion site is set up I get notification of past threads in which I have contributed. When I got notification and read your response, I felt compiled to contribute again.


    My post spoke about not letting the child "play with the iPad".


    The way the OP came off, made it sound like the child was using the device without adult supervision and that the parent was using it as a babysitting tool. I still absolutely stand by my postiton that an expensive tech device should not become a plaything or a babysitter for an unsupervised toddler or very young child.


    Having said that, I DO understand the value of the iPad as a learning tool. I have read some a couple of articles about the way the iPad has been "opened up the world" for children with autism. I think that it has been an incredibly wonderful discovery for parents with autistic children. I have children. One was born perfectly healthy and one was born with a horrible genetic disease that just about killed her and kept her in and out of hospitals for the first 17 years of her life. I know what it is like to "discover" something new and exciting that can help your child succeed in life or help them live a healthier, more normal life. For my daughter, it was a double lung transplant. For your child it is the use of the iPad.


    I honestly could not be happier for you. You and your child now have hope. When you have a "sick" child, sometimes hope is all you have to cling onto while you are waiting for the next scientific breakthrough. I sincerely hope that your child continues to find his way in the world and that someday the iPad and science can lead him into the "mainstream" and he can live a long, healthy, normal life!

  • ipadam129 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 16, 2011 2:44 PM (in response to tdubbs26)

    This issue should not be as hard as this thread is making it.  We all have 3 year olds that play the iPad as an educational tool, and move our apps around screens and folders because there is no way to lock them in place.  Hopefully, Apple is already working on an update for this, but in the meantime, if you don't have TECHNICAL advice that would help this issue, let's leave the parenting advice on another blog.  Does anyone know of an app that can lock apps in place, to prevent moving folders, etc?

  • Martin_UK Level 2 Level 2 (150 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 16, 2011 3:25 PM (in response to ipadam129)

    There isn't one. No 3rd party apps can do what you want. The 'sandbox' nature of iOS means it's unlikely they ever will be able to.


    In most homes with a kid there tends to be an adult and a drawer. Using these and something called discipline in the right combination will allow all parents and carers posting in this thread to acheive the following


    1) Supervised access

    2) No unsupervised access

    3) No breakages/messing up of apps.


    Apple are a great company but they can't code systems to compensate for poor parental supervision and lack of discipline.

  • ipadam129 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 16, 2011 3:37 PM (in response to Martin_UK)

    Wow!  I thought this was a technical thread, not a parenting advice column.  (I guess few in cyberspace can keep themselves from passing out non-solicited parenting advice.) 


    You know, there is a GREAT website that you should ALL check out!  It has place where you are encouraged, even INVITED to tell other people how to raise their kids!  Check it out!!!


  • Martin_UK Level 2 Level 2 (150 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 16, 2011 3:44 PM (in response to ipadam129)

    It's a public forum where everyone's voice is equal. You're free to ignore any comment you dislike.

  • ipadam129 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 16, 2011 4:29 PM (in response to Martin_UK)

    I'm sorry, but it is a technical forum.  You still are not giving me any tehcnical information.  Please do.  Thanks!

  • Martin_UK Level 2 Level 2 (150 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 16, 2011 4:34 PM (in response to ipadam129)

    None of us here are employed by Apple. we are all users giving our ow time for free to help as can.


    There is no technical solution, nothing locks apps in the way you want.


    Either come to terms with that or don't. Either understand the need to parent your kid, or don't.


    There are no other options.

  • ipadam129 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 16, 2011 4:42 PM (in response to Martin_UK)

    Thank you for your succinct answer.  For those just viewing this topic for the first time, as I was today, Marin_UK has given an ANSWER.



    "There is no technical solution, nothing locks apps in the way you want."



    I would encourage Apple to clean out non-essential information, and I would encourage those who post to pay careful attention to the subject and title of the thread you are posting in.

  • arif nugroho Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 20, 2011 7:11 AM (in response to ipadam129)

    It can do. But You should googling n try "lock application on ipad"

  • thomasfromwahiawa Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 6, 2011 1:35 PM (in response to tdubbs26)

    Go to Settings/General/Restrictions and set Deleting Apps to OFF. 


    I set this up a while ago and when I use restrictions I need to put in a numerical code.  I can't remember if you must use a password but mine is set up that way.

  • Greg Parks Level 1 Level 1 (135 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 8, 2011 12:30 PM (in response to tdubbs26)

    It IS possible to lock certain apps so your child can't use them by using Restrictions (found in Settings), but once you disable Restrictions (to use the apps yourself) all your specific Restrictions settings are lost and you have to reconfigure each one to re-enable them. This could be made much less cumbersome if you could save Restrictions profiles and enable/disable them with one switch.


    As far as I can tell, it is NOT possible to lock the position/placement of apps on the screen so your child can't move them around. I imagine this could be added to Restrictions, since it already allows you to restrict deleting apps, but for now, I don't see a way to do it.


    So YES, there are options: you can prevent your child from using certain apps and you can prevent apps from being deleted, but you can't prevent apps from being moved around. However, since the iPad is a family-friendly device, a more elegant, family-friendly solution would be appreciated.

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