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Set up a kid-friendly iPad

Scholle Sawyer McFarland | June 14, 2013
Before handing over your iPad to a kid, it's best to do some parental preparation. In this Macworld Video, Scholle Sawyer McFarland offers some tips.

Explicit content
If you're worried about young kids stumbling upon inappropriate content, there are a few things you can do. First, you'll see the Explicit Language setting. This just ensures that Siri won't misinterpret any dictation with four-letter results.

The Allowed Content section applies to content purchased or rented through the iTunes Store. Here you can set an allowed rating level for Music & Podcasts, Movies, TV Shows, Apps, and more.

If you've left Safari enabled, take a moment to go to, click on the Gear icon, click Search Settings, and adjust the SafeSearch filters. This tool lets you filter out sexually explicit videos and images from Google search results. I'll show you the difference here between a search for 'sex' without filtering and with filtering. You need to save your Search Settings.

If you want to lock your settings so that they can't be changed, associate a Google account with your device.

If you have the YouTube app on your iPad (it's no longer there by default as of iOS 6), seriously consider deleting it. If you decide to keep it, go to Settings, tap Safe Search Filtering, and adjust the filter to your liking. This will at least filter out some of the dreck.

Apple's Allowed Content restriction only applies to content that comes from the iTunes store. So, what about Netflix? Netflix offers some great programming for kids, but it has plenty of inappropriate content as well—some of which might show up in your Watched Recently list.

Netflix does now offer parental controls, but they affect the entire account on all devices. That mean when you want to watch grown-up shows, you must go to your computer, log in to, click Your Account, change the Parental control settings, and then...wait up to 8 hours for changes to go into effect.

If you have young kids, don't bother. Instead, activate Netflix's special dashboard limited to kids' shows. On your iPad, click on "Just for Kids" to switch to this view. The Kids view highlights characters at the top to make selection easier for non-readers. It also reveals a lot of children's shows that are otherwise hard to dig up.

The kid-friendly iPad
These tips can help you make the iPad a more kid-friendly place.Thanks for watching.


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