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iOS Parental Controls (Mobile)

Devices supported
Operating system
Price *
free of charge
Language of interface
Test date
SIP Bench III, 1st test cycle, Summer 2013

*Prices might change according to the latest company offers


The iPhone is provided with an embedded parental control tool that allows some filtering/blocking action that complement the control functionalities offered by an external tool: e.g. it enables the PARENT to block the Safari functionality and also YouTube application using the restriction code.


Installation of the tool: iOS Parental Controls is part of the operation system. Therefore the installation process was not tested with regard to usability.
Configuration of the tool: It is easy to limit the access to some apps. But the software offers unusual options that confuse the user. Expecially there is no hint that basic parental control features as web filtering (based on different content criteria or age) are not supported.
Usage of the tool: Deactivated browser functions leads to a disapearing Safari icon. This can be confusing and annoying for user with enabled parental control and not be aware of this fact.

Usability of the installation process: n/a
Usability of the configuration process: 2.4
Usability of the usage of the product: 1.0

Overall score for usability: 1.9 out of 4 points


The iPhone is provided with an embedded parental control tool that allows only blocking action of some (not all) apps. It enables the PARENT to block e.g. Safari browser or iTunes application.

There is no build in web-filtering tool (as per 2013-07)! You have to install additional external tool to protect children from harmful web content. iOS' parental control tool can limit the use of films or other non www-based content as well as in-app-purchases.


The embedded system is installed by default on all iPhones devices. It is difficult to by-pass it. As the tool does not offer any filering feature, the security tests were not applicable.


Area of needFunctionalitySpecific issuesAssessment
Management Management of User profiles Create several profiles No
Remote Management Manage on various devices No
Monitoring Remote access to monitoring No
Filtering Customisation Topics Customisation of Filtering Topics No
URLs White List Restrict Browsing to White List No
Default White List No
Modification OR Creation No
URLs Black List Creation of User's own Black List No
Keywords Keywords Default Black List No
Default White List No
Creation of a User's Black List No
Creation of a User's White List No
Time Time Limit Settings Set a specific time frame or web access duration No
Blocking Message Type Ask for unblocking by parents No
Redirect to safe resources No
Usage Restriction Web Block Access Yes
Monitor Access No
Safe search Availability No
Social Networks Block Access Yes
Monitor Usage No
Personal data Provision Block No
Streaming Block Access No
Monitor Access No
P2P Block the application Yes
Monitor Downloads No
Skype Block chat Yes
Block video chat No
Monitor No
Prevent new Contact No
Windows Life Messenger Block chat No
Block video chat No
Monitor No
Prevent new Contact No
Email Block email client and/or webmail access Yes


Yes / No
I: installation in 3 steps or lessYes
I: choice of installation for beginners or advanced usersn/a

C: different degrees of strength for the filteringNo
C: different content criteria for the filteringNo
C: option to transfer filter configurations between target usersn/a
C: option to transfer filter configurations between devicesNo
C: overall comprehensible configurationYes
C: overall conformity with user expectationsYes
C: overall easy to learnNo

U: alert message in a child friendly languagen/a
U: option to customise the reaction in case of blockingNo
U: overall easily operable and comprehensible reportingn/a


The Tool prevents the user from by-passing the filter by:Yes / No
Using the IP address instead of the URLn/a
Using an alternative browsern/a
Changing time and date settings*n/a
Disabling or uninstalling the software without a password*n/a
Closing the filtering tool trough the Task Managern/a
Using a proxy instead of a direct connection to the Internetn/a
Accessing the web-pages through the Google Cachen/a
Reaching a website through translation sitesn/a
Renaming a blocked applicationn/a
Using Safe Moden/a
Filtering Content personalised by usern/a
Filtering Content evolving through timen/a
Filtering Multimedia contentn/a
Filtering outbound contentn/a

Funded by
Logo: EUEuropean Commission

Cybion Online Business Intelligence

Stiftung Digitale Chancen

coordinated by:
Innova - Technology Transfer and Valorisation

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